Assessment of Ecotourism Potential Using Fuzzy Analytic Hierarchy Process (FAHP) and Geographic Information System (GIS) in Do Hezar, Mazandaran Province, Iran

Document Type : Original Research Article


1 Department of Physical Geography, Faculty of Earth Sciences, Shahid Beheshti University, Tehran, Iran

2 Department of Physical Geography, Faculty of Earth Science, Shahid Beheshti University, Tehran, Ira


The present research was done to identify and map ecotourism suitability and potential using fuzzy analytic hierarchy process (FAHP) and geographic information system (GIS) in Do Hezar watershed, Hyrcanian forests, north of Iran. Assessment of ecotourism suitability for study area could lead to improving economic situation of people and better conservation of natural resources. The analysis process was performed to produce an ecotourism suitability map, using 12 criteria selected using questionnaires completed by 50 specialists and experts in the fields of ecotourism and natural resource management. These criteria included roughness elevation, slope, rainfall, lithology, soil, land use, distance from rivers, distance from roads, distance from villages, distance from fault, and vegetation density, that were demonstrated to be related to land use planning for ecotourism. The FAHP was applied to determine weights of criteria. The weighted map was overlaid and ecotourism potential was determined on the map.   The results indicated that 52.4% of the area of Do Hezar watershed has high and very high potential for development of ecotourism site. The FAHP methods were useful to determine and identify ecotourism suitability areas in order to develop ecotourism planning in the study area.


Main Subjects

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