vol 19 no2,2019

The Sid Effect of Tourism Icons: Petra/Jordan as a Case Study

The Sid Effect of Tourism Icons: Petra/Jordan as a Case Study

Nasim F. Barham                                                   Kefah Fare Al- Shawaqfih                                            Areen Ibrahim Al-maani

Geography - School of Arts                                       Tourism Management Department                           Queen Rania Centre

Jordan University - Jordan                                      Khawarizmi College - Jordan                                        Yarmouk University - Jordan

Received 02/01/2018                                                          Accepted 04/06/2018

Tourism in Jordan is based on cultural assets limited to a few historical and religious locations. Over time, general impressions about specific touristic sites were firmly established as "touristic icons". This has lead to a rigid understanding of the Jordanian tourism product. Petra is the primary "touristic icon", in addition to secondary locations such as Jerash, Um Qais, Madaba and the historical castles. Urban and rural sites, with their cultural heritage and natural landscapes, remained irrelevant despite all efforts to diversify the Jordanian tourism product. Thus, the regional dimension (Petra, the South of Jordan) completely overshadows the rest of the country.
Despite the positive effect of constructing and maintaining "icons" in the tourism industry, three main negative consequences, inter alia, have been crystallized: 1. The marginalization of numerous touristic sites, 2. Shortening the length of stay in Jordan, 3. Limiting the spatial trickle-down effect of socio-economic benefits of tourism. These negative effects will remain as long as the singular regional dimension remains in contradiction with the diverse national potential.

Keywords: Petra, side effects, touristic icons, national identity, clusters.


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