Cultural Ecosystem Services and Recreational Use: A Review Study in Belgrad Forest, Istanbul.
This paper discusses Cultural ecosystem services (CES) as a part of ecosystem services (ES) and recreational use as a sub issue in the CES. Concepts, perceptions, cultural differences, and historical processes on the subject are explored by examining previous research studies. Explanations are illustrated through a case study of Istanbul’s Belgrad forest. Istanbul is the largest city of Turkey, with a population of over14 million inhabitants. Belgrad urban forest is located in the North West part of Istanbul, approximately 20km from the city center. An urgent management strategy is required to sustainably meet the recreational requirements of the population. Belgrad Forest is a multifunctional forest; it retains a protected status owing to its role in water production. In Belgrad Forest all ES are covered, but recently the recreational function of the forest has gained dominance relative to the other ES. It is operating over its capability from the perspective of CES. Picnicking, jogging, walking, cycling, and sight-seeing are the types of outdoor recreation activities most preferred by visitors. The total area of the forest is 5.442 ha, but the area allocated for recreation activities is just 181.5 ha. This allocated area is insufficient and other service areas are being used due to the high demands. For this review, recent studies and technological tools are examined using research papers and previous studies implemented on Belgrad Forest to identify the optimum management for the recreational requirements with consideration to the sustainability of ES.
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