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Mojtaba Ghadiri Masoum, Mohamadreza Rezvani, Mahmoud Jomepour, Hamidreza Baghiani,
Volume 4, Issue 12 (9-2015)

Poverty is one of the greatest challenges confronting humanity. It is said that poverty is almost related to natural resources, while it is also because of some other factors like natural and human capitals. Villagers are considered among the poorest and most vulnerable within human societies, especially in the countries of the third world. If the purpose of development is obviously that of poverty alleviation and eradication through employment generation for the rural and urban poor, supplying the minimum of basic requirements acceptable to everyone, increase of productivity, causing more balance between geographic areas and socio-economic classes, decentralization and people involvement in the process of decision-making, having emphasis on collective and national self-confidence, finding balance and the recovery of living conditions, then we can consider the rural communities as one of the most significant factors causing the above objectives come true. So, rural development plays a vital role in achieving the overall objectives of development at the national level. Approaches and paradigms are always provided by scientists and theorists to assist us achieving the above objectives. In 1980s, sustainable livelihoods (LS) and sustainable livelihoods approach (SLA) was proposed to be used a new approach in poverty eradication. The main emphasis of this approach was based on a comprehensive and integrated thought for poverty eradication and rural development. In a short time, this approach could attract the attention of many researches. Since, livelihood capitals is an important aspect of sustainable livelihoods approach and because of the important role of these assets in the livelihood of families, especially rural ones whose condition is influenced by tourism activities, in this research we decided to investigate the impact of tourism activities on livelihood capitals in mountain tourism villages of Bala-Taloqan in Taloqan County so we can find out the answer to the question that which villages are better in the case of this kind of capitals.
As a city of Alborz Province, Taloqan County is located at a distance of 90 km from the center of the province and within the northwest of it. In 2012, the city had 2 parts of central and Bala-Taloqan. It was also consisted of 8212 households and a population of 23765. Bala-Taloqan as the study case of this research consists of two rural districts: Kenar-rood and Joestan (central district) with 48 residential villages. In this paper, we have selected 10 mountain villages which have been affected by tourism. The purpose of this study is to investigate the issue of prioritization of capitals resulting from tourism activities in mountain tourism villages of the district of top Talogan, among inhabited households using analytical- descriptive method with an emphasis on library work, field studies and completing the questionnaires. Meanwhile, hierarchical Filler Triangle was used as a model to weighting each indicator along with Oreste method for ranking and prioritization of the mountain tourism villages in terms of investigating the condition of tourism assets and capitals.
Discussion and Conclusion
Considering livelihood capitals, Galird has the best and the village of Manglan has the worst condition. Galirad village, according to its proper position relative to the connecting roads and its distinctive tourist attractions, i.e. the old house of Ayatollah Taleqani, enjoys a certain reputation that has caused more tourists go there. Moreover, Guidance plan has been already implemented in the village that is important in the improvement of connecting roads quality and making easy-access roads. After Galird, Karkbud village is located in the second place. Its famous waterfall is the most important attraction of the village which has given it a national reputation. Although, it has located at an altitude of 2200 meters and it is difficult to access it, the attractive waterfall has compensated for this limitation and attracted tourists. Additionally, the village is very rich in terms of natural capital, but tourism has not developed enough and has failed to make the promotion of other capitals. The results of interviews conducted with residents indicate that they are dissatisfied with tourists there and think of them as a contributing factor to environmental degradation and the rise of social abnormalities. Joestan has also dedicated to the third place of this ranking. Vicinity to Shahrood River and the presence of tomb shrine of Haron the son of Muses, are the most important attractions of this village. Although it is the center of Top Talogan district, it has failed to accomplish its central role. So, many people have left the village over time as even the tomb shrine as a strong religious attraction with lodging facilities has not been able to properly accomplish its role of attracting tourists. For this reason, it is only social capitals, and partially, financial capitals, which have perfect situations here. Other villages have similar status and in spite of having human and natural attractions they have not been successful enough in collecting capitals. Of course, it must be mentioned that in this district tourism is mostly found in the form of Daily tourism and second home tourism by a more percentage of Daily tourists than the second-home ones. Because in the mountain villages studied, due to the lack of access to adequate lands with sufficient slopes in order to construct housing units, there have always been lots of limitations for constructing second houses for the non-native. Additionally, in some villages such as Karkbood, native people refuse to sell lands to the non-native and this could affect the status of financial capital of the village.

Aliakbar Najafi Kani, Kobra Najafi,
Volume 10, Issue 35 (4-2021)

The tourism industry can provide a good platform for investment, and because of its less reliance on resources, provides an opportunity for less developed countries to stimulate their economic growth to increase production and create job opportunities. Meanwhile, the villages have very favorable and special conditions in accordance with their cultural, social, economic, geographical and natural structure. Today, tourists are interested in visiting farms, orchards, groves, springs, cultural and tourist landscapes in rural settlements. Therefore, planning to use them to develop rural tourism is inevitable. Undoubtedly, rural tourism is a reliable source in many developed and developing countries, which can have a significant impact on increasing the income of villagers. One of the biggest benefits of the rural tourism sector is to create income and increase wages, and consequently to improve the economic situation for the people who work there. Accordingly, the overall purpose of this study is to investigate the capacity of tourism development and provide solutions to develop tourism in mountainous villages near the metropolis of Tehran.
Damavand County is in Tehran Province, which has been selected as a typical tourism region of Iran. According to the 2016 census, its population is 125480 people. This county with an area of 1932 square kilometers, includes five districts named Damavand, Absard, Kilan, Rudehen and Abali, two districts including central and Rudehen and 111 villages. Its average height above sea level is 2300 meters.
The center of this county (Damavand city) is located 75 km away from Tehran and has an average height of 2051 meters and its population is 48380 people.
The central district of the county consists of three rural districts, Jam Abroud, (Absard city as capital), Abarshiveh Rural District, (Sarbandan village as the capital), and Tarrud Rural District, (Mara village as the capital), which overall have 87 villages.
Damavand mountainous and countryside county, with its many capabilities and diverse geographical landscapes, has potential and actual capabilities to attract tourists. Abali track, lakes such as Tar and Havir lakes, several waterfalls such as Tizab, Ayeneh Rud. Cheshmeh A'la and Roodafshan Cave and its numerous springs, beautiful gardens and farms, and a very pleasant climate are among its tourist attractions.
The most important attractions of this area attract many nature enthusiasts. For many years, it has been used by the public, especially the residents of the metropolis of Tehran, and many travelers travel from other areas, so comprehensive understanding, design, and proper management to develop tourism in this area is essential and inevitable. Accordingly, the present study, by examining and explaining the important factors of tourism development, tries to consider the welfare of present and future generations, improvement in the quality of life and finally improvement of economic and social welfare level and creating a healthy rural environment in the study area. According to the mentioned issues, the fundamental questions of the research are as follows:
  • What is the capacity of rural tourism in the studied villages?
  • What are the key strategies to solve tourism issues in rural areas?
Research Methodology
Research type is applied research and the research method is descriptive-analytical and field study. The statistical population of the present study is rural households living in the twelve studied villages that according to the 2016 census the population is equal to 14024 people and 3600 households, 15 questions in this research as tourism development capacity and 18 questions as possible challenges for tourism development. It was set in a five-level Likert item (very low, low, medium, high and very high). Tables 1 and 2 demonstrate the reliability of the research instrument using Cronbach's alpha coefficient for the studied components which were 79%, the sample size was 260 by using Cochran's formula and the number of samples was randomly simple/systematic after measuring, the generators were analyzed by using SPSS software and using a hierarchical cluster analysis method.

Discussion and Conclusions
The results of studies in the field of rural tourism show that tourism is an important factor in the occurrence of positive and negative changes in the economic, social and environmental fields at the local and regional levels. Although this activity can lead to the development of rural areas, it can have both adverse consequences. The results of the Friedman Test for measuring the tourism development capacity explain a significant difference at the 99% level with each other. Also, for the challenges of tourism development a significant and 95% difference between the investigated indices is observed. The results of the hierarchical cluster analysis test (neighborhood matrix calculations) Euclidean distance of each village is compared to the next village and based on this, the similarities and differences of the villages have been explained. Then, the clustering process is done in eleven stages, and the studied villages are classified into four categories in terms of tourism capacity. The first cluster villages (Moomej, Jaban Ayneh Varzan) and the second cluster villages (Sarbandan, Zan, Seyyedabad, Havir, Dehnar and Shalambeh) have the most tourism development capacity respectively. Although the third cluster village (Vadan) and the fourth cluster villages (Sorkh Deh and Hashemak) have many tourist attractions compared to the first and second cluster villages, they have lower tourism development capacity. The studied villages are also divided into four categories in terms of the challenges of tourism development. The first cluster village (Moomej village) and the second cluster villages (Jaban, Sarbandan, Vadan, Zan, Ayneh Varzan, Seyyedabad, and Dehnar) have the most challenges in tourism development, respectively. However, the villages of the third cluster (Havir and Shalambeh) and the villages of the fourth cluster (Sorkh Deh and Hashemak) have the least challenges respectively. It can be concluded that while some villages have a high tourism potential based on studied indicators, some of them are also more vulnerable. Therefore, the endeavor of all local managers and officials towards the comprehensive management of rural tourism development is essential and inevitable.

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