Farm Tourism in Wales. Products and Markets, Resources and Capabilities. The Experience of Six Farm Tourism Operators

Open access

Abstract

Wales’ high quality natural environment is a key attraction for tourists from more urban parts of the UK and this has provided opportunities for many farmers to diversify into tourism. This study provides a qualitative examination of the experience of six farm tourism operators, whose businesses are performing well. The study examines the farm tourism operators’ resources and capabilities and how these have contributed towards the performance of their businesses in order to provide examples to other farmers. The study identifies the key resources that farmers have drawn on in creating their tourism products and found these to be: a favourable location, the working farm, farm land and buildings, farm produce, the farm family, the farmer’s business ethos and the business’s reputation. It also highlights the market appeal of these resources to different tourist markets. The research also finds that this group of farmers has demonstrated the necessary capabilities to transform their resources into tourism products that meet evolving market needs. The study highlights that farmers have identified market gaps, niches and trends to cater for in developing their businesses and that they have focused on maintaining the quality and utility of their tourism product. It found that these factors have influenced their business performance. The study also examines the extent to which agriculture (in this case the working farm and farm produce) features as part of the farm tourism product. It concludes that there is scope for a greater focus on agriculture in the farm tourism sector in Wales and that this could create a stronger farm tourism product.

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CiteScore 2016: 0.69

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