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Exploring Social Carrying Capacity Based on Perceived Levels of Crowding: A Case Study of Hanauma Bay, Hawaii

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This study explored the concept of social carrying capacity to identify an acceptable use level for a marine park reserve. Many studies have examined a social capacity of the outdoor recreation sites, whereas few studies have been conducted in the ocean recreation settings. The study attempts to identify a social carrying capacity of a marine park based on the users' evaluation of crowding. Based on the perceived level of crowding, the results suggest that the use level of Hanauma Bay (the Bay) is exceeding capacity. This article provides suggested use levels to implement a social carrying capacity management system.


Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: 2008-09-01

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  • Tourism in Marine Environments is an interdisciplinary journal dealing with a variety of management issues in marine settings. It is a scientific journal that draws upon the expertise of academics and practitioners from various disciplines related to the marine environment, including tourism, marine science, geography, social sciences, psychology, environmental studies, economics, marketing, and many more.
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