Patterns of coastal tourism growth and multiple dwelling: implications for informal camping along the Ningaloo coastline

Misty Lawrie

    Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis

    692 Downloads (Pure)


    Over the past few decades, the development of coastal areas has become an increasingly contested arena. For many years, tourism in remote coastal areas has been the preserve of a few intrepid campers, surfers and recreational fishers. More recently, however, numbers along parts of the coast have increased rapidly, not only contributing to an expansion of camping activity, but also pressure for more commercially oriented tourism. This has contributed to concerns about the environmental sustainability of tourism in remote coastal areas. Governments have increasingly been faced with the challenge of balancing ecological concerns with the pursuit of economic development. Adding to the complexity are the differing needs and demands of various segments of the tourism market all looking to enjoy particular places. Balancing the demands of campers, backpackers, package tourists and others in a single place is often wrought with conflict. This study explores some of these issues in a remote coastal area in Western Australia. The Ningaloo coast has evolved from a difficult to reach destination used by a small number of campers, to one of Western Australia's most popular tourist destinations in just two decades. The thesis examines the factors underlying the growth and change of tourism in the region, tracing its evolution from a few small rudimentary campsites to proposals for large scale resort developments. Of particular interest to this thesis is how planning and policy processes aim to address developmental pressures and resource use/planning conflicts. Additionally, this study provides an insight into the issues facing the informal, long term camper as the traditional segment of Ningaloo's tourism market. It examines how current planning and policy for the Ningaloo coastline affects this group by reshaping traditional tourism use of the area.
    Original languageEnglish
    QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
    Publication statusUnpublished - 2008


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