Mobilides, Context Costs and Heritage in Tourism and Leisure Realtions on the Border of Central Portugal with Spain


  • Gonçalo Fernandes Instituto Politécnico da Guarda



The persistence of borders has been based on the fact that they are crucial for the reproduction of territoriality and of national identity narratives. In this context, and considering the border as a line that separates, divides and controls the existence of areas/territories, it implies that the effects (context costs) disappear with distance, in addition to the emergence of new meanings and dynamics depending on their accessibility, resources held, forms of settlement and economic activities. The Luso-Spanish border is the most stable and, at the same time, the one with the most critical development indexes, due to its penalising demographic evolution, productive disarticulation and differentiated administrative policies. Tourism development is seen as an instrument for the diversification of economies in peripheral and often underdeveloped frontier regions. These areas have, through their history and natural heritage, resources of great value, of which the international rivers, the classified natural areas, the castles and fortresses, the historical villages, the traditions and festivities, the gastronomy and the presence of different cultures stand out in the central Iberian border. Facing this panorama and considering formal and informal relations, cooperating or competing, we try to identify dynamics and forms of cooperation in the construction of a resilience space, in the face of existing constraints and heritage values held, capable of generating new attractions and functions in the oldest European border. Under favourable conditions, these territories contribute to tourism development in the framework of neighbourly relations and interests. In the case of Portugal central border with Spain, it is possible to speak of a porosity that is historical, with the territory(ies) coming together, either through public policies (EU, national, regional and local), or through private investments. The study aims to analyse and systematise the factors of tourism promotion, the political developments and the permeability of the border, in the construction of a tourism and leisure destination.



2022-05-11 — Updated on 2022-05-13