Keywords:Geopark Chichibu, evaluation of geosites, geotourism
The Geopark Chichibu was established in 2011 as a national geopark of Japan, and its geopark status was extended after the review in 2015. Next review is scheduled to be conducted in 2019. Geopark Chichibu is claimed to be the birthplace of modern Japanese geology due to its geodiversity since the Meiji era. The purpose of this study is to evaluate 34 new geosites (Inoue and Tomita, 2018) of the Geopark Chichibu from the perspective of various values, highlight their advantages and issues to be considered, and finally contribute to the management of the Geopark Chichibu through presenting this study. In order to attain the above purpose, research has been conducted for 34 (this number is important because of the 34 pilgrimage sites (temples) in Chichibu) new geosites proposed in July, 2018, and additional 5 possible geosites. Total 39 geosite candidates are assessed from the perspective of six main values; educational value, scientific value, tourism value, safety and accessibility, conservation and site sustainability, and value of tourism information (Suzuki and Takagi, 2017). After showing advantage and issues to be considered for each geosites, this study proposes a partial change of new geosite from the perspective of geotourism as well as ways to make the Geopark Chichibu more attractive for many tourists.
Inoue, M. and Tomita, T., 2018, Bull. Saitama Mus. Nat. Hist. No. 12, 41-48.
Suzuki, D. A. and Takagi, H., 2017, Geoheritage, 10, 123-135.