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March 2018
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The Management Concept of Mountain Based Destination Through Carrying Capacity Analysis in Situ Patenggang Nature Park, Bandung Region


(Presented in IFLA APR Congress, Lombok, 07 – 09 September 2015) 

Fitri Rahmafitria1, Ghoitsa Rohmah Nurazizah2

1Lecturer of Management Resort & Leisure Study Program – Universitas Pendidikan Indonesia

2Lecturer of Management Resort & Leisure Study Program – Universitas Pendidikan Indonesia


E-mail of contact person : rahmafitria@upi.edu




Bandung Region is famous for its mountainous forest landscape, and popular for its uniqueness of natural landscape and comfort climate. The tourism development in Bandung Region requires adequate natural space, to gain tourists satisfaction and environment sustainable. The increasing number of tourists and investments in the form of facilities and tourism infrastructure can lead to the decrease of land carrying capacity, especially if ignoring the concept of environmental friendly and sustainable management. Mountainous areas need a particular model of tourism management and it is not an easy task to do. On one hand, protection and preservation aspects become a main concern. On the other hand, the increasing number of tourists have become the main reason to explore the destination and gain material benefits from it. Thus, tourism management in mountainous areas has a vital function for the society and other inhabitants surrounding it (Arrowsmith et.al[1]; Dudley[2]).This study was conducted to determine the carrying capacity level in Situ Patengang Nature Park, Bandung Region. The study was based on the theory of Douglass[3] that “The use of excessive natural destination will lead to a reduction of tourism quality, and generally can reduce the quality of physical environment”. The data analysis was performed using the formula of carrying capacity which indicated by environment quality, the tolerance of nature resources, number of visitors, the use of nature resources and environment management. The analysis was used GIS as a tools to determine each thematic map and overlaying them to produce the carrying capacity map as the basic to develop a management concept of the area. Scoring technique based on weight standard is used to find the total score that indicate the area as low, medium or high carrying capacity. The analysis showed that the Situ Patengang Nature Park are dominated by the low carrying capacity area, medium quality of environment, high tolerance of natural resources, as well as low concentration of tourist activities, low benefits of natural resources, and low environmental management. The development concept of Situ Patengang Nature Park directed at 5 principles of ecotourism which lead to the creation of ecologically, financially, and socially sustainable activities. For the zoning, core zone should be place in high carrying capacity zones, service zone should be placed on medium carrying capacity zone, as well as buffer zone should be placed on low carrying capacity zone.


Keywords: mountain based destination, carrying capacity, natural tourism



  1. Introduction

Bandung Regency is one of tourist destinations in West Java. It has variety of objects and attractions including natural, cultural, and special interest attractions. The uniqueness of Bandung Regency is the typology. Bandung Regency is mostly mountainous and hilly with the heights between 500m – 1.800m above sea level. In addition, the regency also has a lot of forests, plantations, as well as a long river. While viewed from the climate and air temperature, Bandung Regency included as a cool area with temperatures from 120C to 240C. This kind of specialty are very favorable for the development of tourism sector, especially natural tourism, because natural tourism generally presents natural resources such as mountains, craters, lakes, and waterfalls. Those natural potentials are important for the carrying capacity of nature tourism. With those high natural potentials, of course Bandung Regency attracting tourists to come, especially for tourists from big cities such as Bandung and Jakarta.

Based on the data of tourists’ arrivals in Bandung Regency from year to year, there is an increase in the number of visits. Tourists’ arrivals in 2003 are 1.5 million persons and reached the number of 4.6 million on 2010. The average growth of tourists’ arrivals in Bandung Regency grew by 17% per year. The greatest growth occurred in 2007, reaches 36%.

Just as the province of West Java, Bandung Regency also offers various types of natural tourist attractions. 32 destinations from 49 attractions in Bandung Regency are included in natural attractions. The prime natural attractions in Bandung Regency consist of various types, such as Situ Patengang Nature Park that provides the beauty of lake in the foot of mountains.

As mentioned earlier, the growth of tourists’ arrivals will impacted on the economic sector of regency included local community. The growth is leveling up the community welfare and regional income toward tax and retributions. But in other side, the growth of tourists’ arrival will also give negative impact to the quality of environment. Especially to the destination that provides natural potential such as Situ Patengang Nature Park. In the end, the quality of environment will determine the level of tourist satisfaction in the natural destinations. Therefore, the good and appropriate management are needed to assure the preserve of natural destination, high level of satisfaction so it can maintain the tourist loyalty. Based on those backgrounds, the objectives of this research is to identify the tourism carrying capacity of Situ Patengang Nature Park and developing the model of mountain based destination.


  1. Method

The research was conducted in the Situ Patengang Nature Park Bandung Regency, astronomically located at 107°22’BT – 108°05’BT and 06°41’LS – 07°19’LS. The basic theory used is “the excessive use of natural tourism area will lead to a reduction of tourism quality and generally can cause damage to the surrounding area and the landscape” (Douglass[3]).

The overlay analysis was done to perform mapping and to describe the condition of tourism carrying capacity through field observations in natural attractions Situ Patengang Nature Park. Observations carried out on aspects of environmental quality, resources tolerance, tourists’ number, benefits of resources, and environmental management. The basic theory used is Munasinghe[4], which discusses the approach of environmental, social and economic in measuring sustainable development.

The quality of carrying capacity is determined by the variable carrying capacity condition consisting of variables of environmental quality, resources tolerance, tourists’ number, benefits of resources, and environmental management. Carrying capacity analyzed through scoring technique based on weight standard and the score quality of carrying capacity as seen in the following table.

 Screen Shot 2015-09-23 at 09.18.31

The weight’s values obtained by comparison between the importance and the five variables that affect the carrying capacity according to Fandeli[5]. Weighting matrix is as follows:

 Screen Shot 2015-09-23 at 09.18.41

Scoring is done to determine the quality of the carrying capacity by mapping the variable and the thematic map of tourism carrying capacity. This thematic map overlaid using Arc GIS 8.0 program in order to obtain the quality of the overall Tourism Carrying Capacity based on the following standards:

 Screen Shot 2015-09-23 at 09.18.48 

The map of tourism carrying capacity in Situ Patengang Nature Park was analyzed based on overlaying five thematic maps, which are environment quality, resource tolerant, tourists’ number, resources benefit, and management factor. To develop the concept of mountain based destination that formulated based on the carrying capacity analysis, triangulation is a compound or a combination of various methods used to assess inter-related phenomena from the different perspective. In this research, combinations between qualitative and quantitative methods are used in assessing a particular symptom. With this method, the reliability and validity of the data is more secure because the data were analyzed with a variety of different approaches to produce complete findings from various perspectives.


  1. Literature Review

Natural attractions are the embodiment of human creation, way of life, art-cultural way and history of the people/place that has an attraction to visit. Indonesia’s natural attractions are grouped into two types, they are the attraction outside conservation area and attraction located in the conservation area, which consists of national parks, theme parks, hunting parks, marine parks and forest park. All of these area are under the responsibility of the Directorate General of Protection and Nature Conservation.

Feasibility of natural resources consists of the physical elements in form of plants, animals, geomorphology, soil, water, air, as well as an attribute of the human environment that supposed to have certain values, such as the beauty, uniqueness, scarcity, diversity, landscapes and stretchiness.

According to Fandeli[5], the application of understanding of carrying capacity is used for a variety of human life. The environmental carrying capacity is the ability of environment to support human behavior and other living things naturally. According to Douglass[3], the carrying capacity of the tourist destination is the number of tourists who still can use the destination and still can be supported by the area, marked with the absence of changes in tour quality.

The concept of tourism carrying capacity becomes very important because the tourist satisfaction is very dependent on the quality of tourist attractions. Condition of objects and natural attractions can determine the tour quality. Tour quality is the limited level of those destinations should maintain so that tourists can feel comfortable physically, psychologically and physically (Douglass[3]).

According to Fandeli[5], basically tourism carrying capacity depends on several aspects such as environmental conditions, and the number of tourist, and tourists’ behaviors. Conceptually tourism carrying capacity is the function of:

Screen Shot 2015-09-23 at 09.19.03



  1. Result and Discussion


Limiting Factors of Mountain Based Destination

The use of natural resources as the main attraction for tourist activities are getting increase as the increase of tourists interest to explore the uniqueness of natural resources (Fandeli[5]; Hermantor[6], Supriyanto and Sari[7]).   Mountain based destination is one of the popular destination in tropical country that getting higher in demand. However some research noted that the increase of tourists number often in line with the decrease of environment quality   (Cole[8]; Doggart and Doggart[9]; Nelson[10]; Harris and Leiper[11]; Hillery et.al[12]). The tourism management of mountain based destination needs a specific model based on local landscape characteristics, and consider some limiting factors that influencing the level of landscape sensitivity. In one hand the management should give more focus on its preservation program as the main function of mountain based destination, but in another hand, the management also has to boost the number of tourists to get more profit as income generated for local government. The difference standard and rules between preservation function and tourism purpose, frequently become a conflict between stake holder which are government, management, local community and tourist (Arrowsmith et.al[1]; Dudley[2]). The management of preservation area is focused on maintaining its nature as origin, while for tourism’s purpose the management will explore its resources as tourism attraction and organize the facilities for tourists comfort. According to Hammitt et.al[13] and Hillery et.al[12], the management of mountain based destination need a specific model, which considering the aspect of carrying capacity, the importance for nature habitat, and also the intensity and behavior of visitors. The regulation should deliberate tourist density and behavior as one of the basic identification for developing the visitor management model (Arrowsmith et.al[1]).


The Analysis of Carrying Capacity Aspect in Situ Patengang Nature Park

Environment quality analysis

The quality of environment in this research is determined by the type of land cover in Situ Patengang Nature Park. The result of this analysis is showed that Situ Patengang Nature Park is divided into 4 land cover, which are forest, plantation, lake and building. Sequentially, levels of carrying capacity from the lowest to the highest level are: forest, plantation, lake and building. From the total area of 331.8 hectare, the area with high level of carrying capacity is 22.99%, the medium level is 75.11% and the low level is 1.91%.

Screen Shot 2015-09-23 at 09.19.12


Resource tolerance in Situ Patengang Nature Park

Resource tolerance is about the land sensitivity to disaster, caused by human treatment or activities. The level of resource tolerance is decided by analyzing the slope level. The highest slope level, the lowest tolerance it be, and the lowest carrying capacity of that land to carry human activities. The land with high level of slope is ease to erosion and land sliding, especially with intensive tourists’ activities on that.

The result of slope level showed that Situ Patengang Nature Park is dominated by high tolerance resource (43.13%). These findings show that this area is covered by flat slope which is available for tourism activities.

 Screen Shot 2015-09-23 at 09.19.18


Tourist activities and density in Situ Patengang Nature Park.

In this research, the level of tourist density and activities, is divided into 3 categories, which are 1) high intensive area of density and activities, which placed on center area for facilities and services, 2) medium density and activities area, which are the lake area and camping ground, 3) low density and activities which is contained of forest area for preservation.

It showed that Situ Patengang Nature Park is dominated by low density area. The intensive activities and high density area are placed in the north part of the lake, which provided by facilities and service center like restaurant, souvenir shops, and “Batu Cinta” site. The area with medium density and activities is lake, with boating and water biking activities. The forest area in the south part becomes the lowest density area, because of the access limitation as the regulation for tourism purpose is very strict on that area.

 Screen Shot 2015-09-23 at 09.19.25


Resource benefit in Situ Patengang Nature Park

The resource benefit is showed its benefit for tourism purpose. The high benefit is lake and facilities area, the medium benefit is plantation area and the low benefit is forest area. According to the result of resource benefit analysis, Situ Patengang Nature Park is dominated by low resource benefit (59.67%), as forest become dominate in covering the total area. The high ones only cover 17.34% (57.52 Ha).

 Screen Shot 2015-09-23 at 09.19.30


Environment Management in Situ Patengang Nature Park

Criteria for environment management in Situ Patengang Nature Park are observed based on intensity of maintenance program created by the management. The preservation forest has the highest management and supervision program, because of the frequent of regular patrol by the management. The lake with 5 meters buffer to the land is maintained rarely than the forest area. The quality of lake’s water and its depth are done once in a month. While the management of facilities and tourism service center has no specific maintenance program, especially to increase the environment quality surround it.

The result of this research showed that most of the area have low maintenance program, while intensive maintenance program only covered 16.14% from the total area. The factor of maintenance program has an influenced to the total carrying capacity of the area. The area with low maintenance program will have low carrying capacity level, and vice versa.

 Screen Shot 2015-09-23 at 09.19.36


Carrying Capacity at Situ Patengang Nature Park

Here are the results of the overlay analysis on the five parameters of the function of carrying capacity assessment Situ Patengang Nature Park:

Screen Shot 2015-09-23 at 09.19.44





Carrying capacity value in this study is the result of the attribute formulation values such as environmental quality, tolerance of resources, concentrations of tourists, benefits of resources, as well as existing environmental management in each area of Situ Patengang Nature Park. The formulation can be seen below:

Carrying capacity value    =   F {(score of environmental quality x 15) + (tolerance level of resources x 30) + (tourist concentrations x 17.5) + (benefit of resources x 15) + (tourism management x 22.5)}

The formulation will obtained three categories of carrying capacity, i.e. low, medium, and high carrying capacity. Low carrying capacity is in the range of value between 100-170, while the middle one is at the ranges 170-240, and the high one is at values > 240.

Based on the results of some thematic maps’ overlayed, the following are the results (Picture 2):

  1. Areas with high carrying capacity value: This area is marked with a dark green color. This area is located in area which perceived have middle environment quality, high tolerance of resources, middle concentrations of tourists, high benefits of resources and middle environmental management.
  2. Areas with middle carrying values: This area is marked with a yellow color. This area includes the intensive tourism development zone located on the north side of the lake. This area has been built and filled by gazebo, souvenir stalls, docks, and raft parking lots. The area is considered to have a middle environmental quality, middle resources tolerance, high concentration of tourist activity, middle benefits of resources, and low environmental management.
  3. Areas with low carrying capacity value: This area is marked with a light green color. This area includes a nature reserve forest, plantations, and including residential community areas. The area is dominated with the middle environmental quality, low tolerance of resources, low tourist concentration, middle benefits of resources, and low environment management.



 Screen Shot 2015-09-23 at 09.19.51



The overlay maps can finally categorize the three levels of carrying capacity in Situ Patengang Nature Park. From the entire area of 331.8 hectares, low capacity zones covering 82.75%, middle carrying capacity zone were 1.91%, and high carrying capacity zone were 15.34%. Tourism development in Situ Patengang Nature Park is limited to areas with high carrying capacity which laid on the lake area.


Management Concept of Situ Patengang

The development concept of Situ Patengang Nature Park preferably directed to the principle of ecotourism hence could create water-based nature tourism activities that are sustainable ecologically, financially, and socially, namely:

  1. The nature-based: The main natural resources that can be utilized is the lake which have high carrying capacity value. Tourism development is including the addition of the variety of tourist activity that can spark creativity and involvement of tourists, such as: water-based outbound activity, simulation program of traditional fishing, and water bird-watching on a boat to see and enjoy behavior water birds.
  2. Ecologically sustainable: the business continuity of tourist attractions relies heavily on the management in conserving resources, therefore the efforts should be taken include:
  3. Monitoring and controlling of natural resources on a regular basis
  4. Restrict access to the low carrying capacity area
  5. Prohibit oil-fueled boat and socialize traditional boats
  6. Minimize negative behaviors of tourists through interpretation programs
  7. Decentralized facilities and tourist activities
  8. Applying the construction of the facility in accordance with the PP 36 of 2010
  9. Environmentally educative: improving satisfaction and experience by giving added value services such as improving treasures, knowledge, and concern for the environment by developing interpretation media and interpretation program.
  10. Locally beneficial: involving local communities in managing tourism and giving brad entrepreneurship opportunities inside the object.
  11. Generate tourists’ satisfaction: improving tour quality by improving the quality of human resources and facilities.





Development of Activities and Tourism Facilities

The results of the carrying capacity analysis indicate that the carrying capacity of water area is the highest carrying capacity of area. One of the causes of high capacity in this area is the high tolerance of resources, low tourist concentrations, and high potential benefits of resources for tourist activity. If connected to the Importance-Performance Analysis, the variable of density and queue time are included into Quadrant IV, it shows that the park still has high potential to accommodate more tourists because until now there has been no complaints about the tourists’ density of the object. It can also be connected to the lack of tourist activities to do in the area. Until now, the only activity to do is going around the lake by boat.

Tourist activities may have implications to the impact on the quality and environmental sustainability. The tourist activity development’s standard, proposed by Gold[14], is divided into 3 zones activity that can be seen in the following table. Provision variety of tourist activities must be done because the lack of tourism activities carried out in the Situ Patengang Nature Park which is causing passive tourists who tend to perform destructive actions. Various tourists’ activities should be able to accommodate the needs of both group and individual tourist. The management also has to organize monitoring action towards tourists’ behavior of managers by providing tour guide/interpreter, as well as a variety of interpretation boards.


  1. Conclusion

The result of this research shows that Situ Patengang Nature Park is dominated by the low carrying capacity area which is covered by tea plantation and water body area. The factor of resources tolerance has a highest weight, follow by management aspect and commitment, concentration of tourists’ activities, environment quality and resources benefit. The comprehensive tourism management should be applied in mountain based destination by consideration the aspects of physical characteristics, management program and education for tourists and the local community.

The development concept of Situ Patengang Nature Park should be directed to the sustainable principle of ecotourism, which is nature-based, ecologically sustainable, environmentally educative, locally beneficial, as well as generates tourists’ satisfaction, hence it can creating water-based nature tourism activities that are ecologically sustainable, financially, and socially. The applied concept of zoning development is adapted to the carrying capacity of the overlay zone.






[8] Cole, D.N. (1989). Recreation Ecology : What We Know, What Geographers Can Contribute. Professional Geographer 41(2): 143-148

[9] Doggart, C., and N. Doggart. (1996). Occasional Studies : Environmental Impacts of Tourism in Developing Countries. Travel and Tourism Analyst 2:71-86.

[10] Nelson,J.G. (1993). Third International Symposium on Tourism, Ecology and Municipalities. Environmental Conservation 20:373-374.

[12] Hillery, M., B.Nancarrow., G. Griffin, and G.Syme. (2001). Tourist Perception of Environmental Impact. Annals of Tourism Research 28(4):853-867

[13] Hammitt, W.E., R.D. Bixler, and F.P. Noe (1996) Goinf Beyond Importance-Performance Analysis to Analyze the Observance: Influence of Park Impact. Journal of Park and Recreation Administration 14(1): 45-62.



[1] Arrowsmith, C., D. Zanon and P.Chhetri. (2005). Monitoring Visitor Pattern of Use in Natural Tourist Destination (Chapter). Taking Tourism to The Limit : Issues, Concepts and Managerial Perspective. Routledge. Amsterdam.

[2] Dudley, N. (2008). Guidelines for Applying Protected Area Management Categories. IUCN Gland Switzerland. 106p.

[3] Douglass, W.R. 2000.Forest Recreation. Pergamont Press. New York. 326 p.

[4] Munasinghe. 1995.

[5] Fandeli,C. 2002. Perencanaan Kepariwisataan Alam. Fakultas Kehutanan Universitas Gadjah Mada. Pustaka Pelajar. Jogjakarta.265 p.

[6] Hermantoro, H. (2011). Creative Based Tourism. Aditri. Depok. 254 p.

[7] Supriyanto, B and L. Sari (2013). Ecotourism in National Parks in Indonesia (article). Ecotourism and Sustainable Tourism Development in Indonesia: The Potentials, Lessons and Best Practices. PT.Gramedia. Jakarta. 545 p.

[11] Harris, R., and Leiper, N. (1995). Sustainable Tourism, an Australian Perspective. Butterwoth Heinneman. 156 p.

[14] Gold. 1980. Recreation Planning and Design. Mc-Graw Hill Book.Co., New York. 332 p.

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