The Role of Rural Tourism in Sustainable Rural Development: A Case Study of Shandiz Rural Region, Khorasan Razavi Province, Iran

Document Type: research paper


Assistant professor, Department of Geography, Payame Noor University, Tehran, Iran.


Purpose: Owing to the vital role of rural tourism in the resurgence of rural economies, rural settlements have been encouraged to incorporate it into their local economies. This paper examines the rural settlements around the metropolitan city of Mashhad in the northeast of Iran to determine the role of tourism in creating sustainable economic capacities in rural areas.
Methods: The data were collected through a field study of 237 selected households to evaluate the research variables. Two models were applied to test the hypotheses.
Results: It is shown that there are relationships among the variables and that rural tourism can lead to the expansion of sustainable capacities through economic diversification, entrepreneurship, and the production of local capital. Indeed, rural tourism is found as a central phenomenon that can create new opportunities in rural settlements.
Conclusion: Rural tourism indirectly promotes rural sustainability. The promotion of diverse economic sectors is highly significant for building rural sustainable capacities.


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