Places Rated: Hainan’s Overdeveloped Coast
The November/December issue of Traveler features our annual “Places Rated” survey of destination stewardship, and this year 340 expert panelists rated 99 coastal destinations around the world. Here on the blog, we’re going to highlight some of these coastal destinations and are interested in adding your feedback to the mix. What do you think?
Rating: 51 — “Facing Trouble” Category
This teardrop-shaped island’s verdant, mist-bound mountains and excellent surfing beaches have earned it the nickname “China’s Hawaii.” Its burgeoning hospitality industry has brought economic growth and environmental challenges. “Locals may benefit from tourism, but outsiders benefit more.”
Why did the place earn this score? Read representative panelist comments after the jump.
“Has become an overdeveloped coastal city.”
“Developing quickly into a retirement and winter resort for Europeans, Russians, and the growing Chinese middle class. A result, the area is under considerable pressure. Developers with money easily circumvent regulations. In Yalong Bay, locals are being denied entry to the beaches. Reminds me of the situation in Phuket in the 1980s.”
“Hainan is suffering from overdevelopment. Survival of gibbons and Eld’s deer seems unlikely even in the medium term. “
“Unregulated development, especially in Sanya. There needs to be greater sensitivity to ethnic minorities and farmers.”
“Emerging conflicts between farmers and developers. The island is adopting a speculative development model geared towards attracting the urban rich.”
- Nat Geo Expeditions
Survey scoring system:
74-84 Top Rated
65-73 Doing Well
55-64 In the Balance
48-54 Facing Trouble
34-47 In Trouble
22-34 Near Catastrophic
See all 99 ratings and representative panelist comments online and share your thoughts below.
Photo: Qiuyu Gu