The contribution of faculty of physical activity and recreation in the development of sport tourism in Albania
Keywords:sport tourism, touristic potential, cultural heritage
Albania is a country poorly known in Europe despite its rich history and cultural heritage. Otherwise known as "the land of eagles" or "the bridge linking the east with the west", Albania has given a lot to the history and culture of Europe. In 1992 this country came out of a long communist dictatorship and began its path to democratization. Tourism, which during the communist era was considered as "a problem of society", is taking a leap today, becoming one of the main branches of the Albanian economy. In this context there was needed to inform and educate the public for the advantages and the disadvantages of tourism. The Geo-Physics condition of Albania provides enough opportunities for the development of different forms of Sports Tourism. With about 70% of the mountain surface, Albania offers the possibility of outdoor sports development as: Hiking, Mountaineering, Skiing, etc. The 400 km coastline offers the possibility of the development of aquatic sports such as Kayak at Sea, Diving, Kite Surf, etc. Numerous rivers and lakes offer the opportunity of developing sports: Fishing, Rafting etc. This rich natural tourist potential and the growing demand of tourists that practice these kinds of sports faces with tourist and cultural deficiencies service that Albania offers. For this reason the Sports University of Tirana and in particular the Faculty of Physical Activity and Recreation have created opportunities to students in this field. Between lessons in the auditorium and hours of practice in mountainous areas and in coastal areas, those first generation students in sports and recreation tourism was given the opportunity to be pioneers in the development and spread of this sports tourism culture in Albania.
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