GEOGRAPHICAL RESEARCH ›› 2020, Vol. 39 ›› Issue (3): 682-695.doi: 10.11821/dlyj020181360

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Influencing factors of tourists' cognition of local nostalgic cultural elements: Take Huizhou region as a case study

WANG Xinge1, ZHANG Xiyue2(), CHEN Tian3,4   

  1. 1. Urban-Rural Planning Administration Center, MOHURD, Beijing 100835, China
    2. School of Humanities and Social Sciences, Beijing Institute of Petrochemical Technology, Beijing 102617, China
    3. Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, CAS, Beijing 100101, China
    4. Key Laboratory of Regional Sustainable Development Modeling, CAS, Beijing 100101, China
  • Received:2018-12-10 Revised:2019-01-03 Online:2020-03-20 Published:2020-05-20
  • Contact: ZHANG Xiyue


The crisis of memory disappearing of local culture has made the development model aimed at "retaining homesickness" become the focus of academia. The function of both protection and activation of local culture has made tourism development an effective way to "keep homesickness" in the field of geography. In recent years, tourist destinations featured with regional nostalgic culture (especially the ancient cities, the traditional villages and the rural areas) have attracted many tourists and developed rapidly. However, the theoretical research on the local nostalgic cultural resources in China lags far behind the practice. At present, there are only a few studies on qualitative description and logical deduction in the academic debate, and case analysis or quantitative research on developing tourism to "keep homesickness" is scarce, which is not conducive to the exploration of the regional nostalgic cultural resources and the tourist destination construction of "retaining nostalgia". Under this background, this paper tries to bridge the gap. Taking Huizhou region as a case study, we examined the influencing factors of tourists' cognition of local nostalgic cultural elements with the aid of cognitive measure analysis, Logistic regression model, etc. During the process, local nostalgic culture elements system was built. This paper reveals that the overall cognition degree of tourists' cultural elements is high, however, there is a big difference between them. Tourists have a higher awareness of the local architecture of the tourist destinations, followed by the natural landscape and local story, while with the lowest cognition of local festivals. The factors that influence the tourists’ cognitive level of local nostalgic cultural elements mainly include tourists’ age, visiting frequency, the motivation of leisure, and the motivation of shopping. The influence of these four factors on the tourists’ cognitive level of local nostalgic cultural elements is the motivation of leisure > visiting frequency > age > the motivation of shopping. Among them, the motivation of leisure, visiting frequency, and age have significantly positive influence on tourists’ cognition, while the motivation of shopping has significant negative effects. This study has certain theoretical significance and reference value in response to the academic community’s assertion that tourism development is a new urbanization model under the concept of "retaining homesickness", broadening the connotation of cultural tourism resources and guiding the exploration of local nostalgic cultural elements through the market segmentation.

Key words: tourists' perspective, local nostalgic cultural elements, cognition, influencing factor, Huizhou region