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Abstract

Provides background on the development and nature of Antarctic tourism and associated environmental issues, as well as agreements and regulations affecting environmental management in Antarctica. Following an outline of the survey methodology and provision of information on the socioeconomic profiles of the respondents, results of a survey of Antarctic tourists on the Russian registered ship the ‘Akademik Ioffe’ are reported. The importance of Antarctic wildlife as an attraction for these Antarctic tourists is then given particular attention. The study considers amongst other things how important Antarctic wildlife was in convincing these tourists to undertake their trip to Antarctica, the importance to the tourists of seeing different species of wildlife and the relative importance of wildlife compared with other attractions of the tour to Antarctica. Views both prior to and following visits to Antarctica are given. The views of the tourists about selected environmental issues involving Antarctica were canvassed. These are reported and discussed. Amongst the subjects discussed is whether the sampled tourists favour an expansion in tourism to Antarctica and why. An overall assessment completes the study.

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