Archaeological Tourism as Catalyst for Landscape Change in Vedi, Armenia

Student: WANG Yadian

Supervisor: Scott Melbourne
Thesis section: Site design—does it matter?
Programme: Master of Landscape Architecture
Date: June 2020


This design mainly studies the staged landscape renewal strategy of the multi-purpose cultural heritage site with tourism as a catalyst for improved heritage protection, ecological performance, and sustainable economic growth in Vedi, Armenia. In recent years, with the increasing proportion of cultural tourism in the national economy of Armenia, archaeological tourism has become the government’s most concerned direction to promote national income and help maintain archaeological heritage. The current stage of Armenia’s archaeological tourism industry is mostly the evolution of the form of bottom-up farmhouses, pursuing a single development focused on ticket income. Based on this background, taking the Vedi fortress of Armenia as an example, This research aims to systematically analyze the relevant spatial and political, economic and cultural factors of the archaeological landscape, and explore the use of dynamic tourism as a catalyst to achieve better landscape change. The specific tourism dynamic methodology is distribution dynamics, model dynamics, and density dynamics. At the same time catalytic landscape is divided into three stages. The first stage focuses on archaeological research and tourism infrastructure preparation; the second stage focuses on high-density archaeological tourism, developing surrounding sightseeing agriculture, and obtaining capital accumulation; the third stage is the transformation of tourism and tourism into education Tourism, combined with the gradual restoration of the archaeological site and the restoration of the natural environment of the surrounding area. This study ultimately explores landscape strategies that gradually help multi-scale dynamic tourism design in areas, sites, and units to help the agricultural transformation of archaeological surrounding communities, achieve sustainable economics, archaeological heritage protection, and ecological restoration of the natural environment surrounding archaeological surroundings.

Keywords: archaeological tourism; landscape change; heritage conservation; sustainable economy; ecological archaeology

Enlarge Photo: Vedi fortress is located in the Ararat province of Armenia, which is an essential archaeological tourists site to be developed, with a complex surrounding environment and stakeholders. By WANG Yadian.Enlarge Photo: The specific tourism dynamic methodology is distribution dynamics, model dynamics, and density dynamics. At the same time catalytic landscape is divided into three stages according to the issue priority. By WANG Yadian.Enlarge Photo: In order to save start-up capital and protect the cultural and natural environment, the siting principle is cooperative agriculture, away from core nature reserves, and use of existing infrastructure. By WANG Yadian.Enlarge Photo: Archaeological land is mainly to gradually build the corresponding infrastructure to help it complete the excavation and research work, at the same time need to excavate the site of ecological and heritage protection. By WANG Yadian.Enlarge Photo: Archaeological land is time-sensitive, and archaeologists can restore it to its natural environment after excavation. By WANG Yadian.Enlarge Photo: The landscape design in the core are of the archaeological site is to meet the basic needs of archaeologists on-site activities and guide the visit of monuments through road design. By WANG Yadian.Enlarge Photo: Maintaining agricultural picking and tourist interaction in the early stage of agriculture and agricultural capital accumulated in the early stage will be used to industrialize agriculture transformation. By WANG Yadian.Enlarge Photo: The main activities of archaeology are excavation and investigations in nearby rivers. Ecological strategies need to be implemented to help restore the original natural soil quality. By WANG Yadian.Enlarge Photo: This design model focuses on the stage when there is a conflict with the lives of residents, and the strategy of achieving clear boundaries through the plant growth. By WANG Yadian.Enlarge Photo: The stratigraphy (underground layered content) and its upper surrounding areas reveal the details of the landscape scale and are also guidelines and principles for the landscape design. By WANG Yadian.