Tourism and National Parks: the origin of the concept

Stephen Boyd, Richard Butler

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


This chapter sets out the narrative behind the factors that brought about the development of the world's first national park: Yellowstone, Wyoming, USA and how a system of parks evolved across the US over time. A distinct pattern emerged where many parks were established in peripheral regions in western US, in areas of low population density and in amenity-rich environments. The system of governance evolved with Acts followed by agencies and a series of policy developments. Many of the early US parks developed against the backdrop of early elite travellers interested in these spaces as part of the countries frontier region. The chapter outlines that that parks established in Canada followed the history in the US, and that a Canadian system of parks had a similar history albeit with different Acts, agencies and policies. The authors make the strong argument that the 'origin of the concept' is a North American one; this model was quickly replicated across many other 'New World' countries, with some local and regional variation, of South Africa, Australia and New Zealand.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTourism and National Parks: Issues and Implications
EditorsRichard Butler, Stephen Boyd
Place of PublicationChichester
PublisherJohn Wiley & Sons, Inc.
ISBN (Print)0-471-98894-4
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 2000


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