By Lesego S. Stone & Gyan P. Nyaupane
The paper critically explores why most black Africans rarely visit protected areas. More specifically, the study examines non- Western tourists’ perceptions of nature and nature-based tourism in comparison to Western tourists, using Botswana as a case study. The differences in perceptions are explored by adopting an interpretive paradigm to collect and analyze the data and using the North–South conceptualization of nature and tourism. Results indicate that for Western tourists visiting Botswana, nature symbolizes recreation, rejuvenation, and an opportunity “to get away from it all,” whereas for Batswana, it is perceived as a part of everyday life, not an exclusive leisure space. Furthermore, Batswana’s conceptualization, relation to nature, and historical, cultural, and political backgrounds help explain their non-participation in nature-based tourism.