Factors Influencing the Growth of Tourism in Uganda: A Case Study of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park.
The study was about factors influencing the growth of tourism in Uganda. Acase study of Bwindi Impenetrable national park. The study was guided by the following objectives; to identify the attractions that have influenced growth of tourism at Bwindi impenetrable national park, to examine how government policy has contributed to the tourism at Bwindi impenetrable national park and to identify other potential factors that have led to the growth of tourism at Bwindi impenetrable national park. Descriptive research design was used in the study and data was collected using a questionnaire and key Infomart interviews. During data collection purposive sampling technique and simple random sampling were used. Both qualitative and quantitative approaches were used to collect datafrom8 l respondents.The respondents were dominated by males accounting for 59% and females accounting for 41 %. In terms of occupation, respondents were comprised of tour guides with diploma level represented by 48% most tour guides had completed Diploma, policy makers were represented by8% and had completed degree level of education. Tourists were represented by 12% and they had completed postgraduate level of education, peasants had completed primary and secondary level and they were represented by 15% and 17% respectively. The findings revealed that animal species such as mountain Gorillas were the major tourist attractions at Bwindi impenetrable national park because 22% of the respondents or touristsrated them as the main reason for visitingBwindi impenetrable national park. Other factors have led to the development of tourism at Bwindi impenetrable national park include political climate with 10% of the respondents, image of the destination with 7%, craft shops and tourism centers with 18%, game and bird watching with 16%, nature walks with 11 % and friendly tour guides and tour operator with 14%. Some of the challenges that hinder tourism development at Bwindi impenetrable national park include poor road network and cool climate which most of the tourists feared.The study concludes that the presence of unique wildlife especially mountain Gorillas, the image of Bwindi as a tourist destination and favourable policies are the major factors that influenced tourism development, policies that improve and promote tourism in the sharing of tourism benefits and other factors that contribute to tourism development at Bwindi impenetrable national park.-The findings of this research are expected to be useful to policy makers, academicians and other key players in the tourism industry and community development sector.Although the results have established that local communities participate in the tourism decision-making process through their leaders who are members of the decision-making bodies, overall the local people in Ruhija sub-county felt they were generally not involved. This was in part caused by people's reluctance to attend village general meetings, which eventually posed barriers to communicate outcomes. This suggests the need to raise people's awareness of the importance of village general meetings as important avenues through which public opinion can be collected and feedback from leaders can be communicated.
Katwesigye, Jordan (2022). Factors Influencing the Growth of Tourism in Uganda: A Case Study of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. Kabale: Kabale University.