Less visited tourism spaces in South Africa

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Abstract: Within the vibrant and expanding body of tourism scholarship around peripheral regions, there are limited geographical studies on locational issues. Notwithstanding a substantive contribution by geographers to understanding a cross-section of tourism issues the need exists to ‘re-spatialize’ our understanding of tourism patterns in peripheral areas. It is against this backdrop that the purpose of this paper is to build upon recent analyses of South Africa’s tourism space economy and investigate the location of ‘less visited tourism spaces’ in the country. Situated within an international literature on peripheral tourism this analysis reviews a range of indicators concerning less visited tourism spaces in South Africa. The focus is explicitly upon identifying the most marginal and in many respects most ‘off the tourism map’ local municipalities in South Africa as a counterpoint to previous works that identify across a range of similar indicators the most significant and leading spaces for tourism development. Overall, the paper represents a contribution both to an evolving South African scholarship on tourism geography, as well as to an expanding international literature around peripheral tourism spaces.