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Visits to the Swedish Mountains: Constraints and Motivations

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This paper examines the joint role of constraints (structural, intrapersonal, and interpersonal) and motivations (place attachment and activity commitment) to understand why people visit the Swedish mountains. A national survey of the Swedish population shows that income and distance act as constraints to mountain visits, but that place attachment plays a stronger role than constraints. We argue that motivation should be more explicitly taken into account in constraint studies. Participating friends, perceived self‐skill and activity commitment are important for downhill skiers but not so much for backpackers. Like several other constraint studies, we find that those who are most active in visiting other places and participating in other leisure activities are most likely to visit the mountains. Rather than acting as a constraint, participation in one leisure sector is associated with participation in another sector. We believe this reflects a sort of recreational career and should be considered in future research. We also discuss the results of this study with regard to the future development of tourism in the Swedish mountain region.

Keywords: Mountain tourism; backpacking; constraints; downhill skiing; motivations; place attachment

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: European Tourism Research Institute (ETOUR), Mid‐Sweden University, Ă–stersund, Sweden 2: Department of Rural Sociology, University of Wisconsin—Madison, Madison, Wisconsin

Publication date: October 1, 2005

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