Characteristics of forest-based recreation in Korea and the case of natural recreation forests

Characteristics of forest-based recreation in Korea and the case of natural recreation forests
이주형Renate Buerger-Arndt[Renate Buerger-Arndt]
Issue Date
Life Science Journal, v.10, no.3, pp.739 - 747
Comprehensive opportunities for urban populations to enjoy outdoor recreation are a major indication of the quality of life and the well-being of people in industrial nations. Forests can play a major role in providing these opportunities and can provide physical and emotional benefits to recreational users. Not only are the quality and quantity of forests crucial, their accessibility is also important. Access includes ways for people to enter forests, the existence of recreation facilities, opportunities to use forests, and customs that include forest recreation. This article analyzes forest recreation opportunities and practices in South Korea that have been introduced as a new concept during the last three decades, in the wake of massive reforestation of the mountainous areas after the Korean War. The analysis is based on available Korean forest visitor data, the designated homepage of the Korean Natural Recreation Forests, and interviews with experts. Forest recreation in Korea is compared with that in Germany. The study shows that although Korea has become one of the best wooded industrial nations worldwide and embraces forest recreation, opportunities for the general public to use forests are still limited for various reasons. Thus, we propose a more integrated and multifunctional approach for future forest management.
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