The following is a translated summary of a report from the local press. It has been edited for clarity, including the addition of links and information needed for readers unfamiliar with Jeju. — Ed.
Last year Jeju Special Self-Governing Province commissioned the Research Institute for Regional Government & Economy of Korea to conduct a survey about the awareness of Jeju’s environmental assets. In total, some 500 Korean tourists and 221 foreign tourists responded (including 150 Chinese and 71 Japanese nationals).
1. Korean tourists
– 72.2 percent of participants responded that they were aware that Jeju has World Natural Heritage sites.
– Only 33.2 percent had heard there are Global Geoparks on Jeju; 39.4 percent had “never heard of them before” and 27.4 percent had “heard of them but didn’t know where they are.”
– 73.2 percent of respondents said they had no idea of the existence of the Jeju Biosphere Reserve.
2. Foreign tourists
– 46 percent of Chinese respondents hadn’t heard of World Natural Heritage sites on Jeju.
– The percentage of Chinese tourists who also responded that they had “no idea” about Global Geoparks and the Biosphere Reserve was 52 percent and 60.6 percent respectively.
– For Japanese tourists, the number who were unaware of Jeju’s World Natural Heritage sites, its Global Geoparks and the island’s Biosphere Reserve was 49.3 percent, 63.4 percent and 78.9 percent, respectively.
Researchers said a definitive strategy to promote Jeju island as a place for eco-tourism is needed. — Halla Ilbo