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GPS-Based Mobile Exercise Application: An Alternative Tool to Assess Spatio-Temporal Patterns of Visitors’ Activities in a National Park

Jinwon Kim, Brijesh Thapa, Seongsoo Jang


The assessment of spatio-temporal patterns of visitors’ activities in national parks is essential to mitigate impacts to natural resources as well as manage experiences. With the use of a GPS-based mobile exercise application dataset, this study explored the spatio-temporal patterns of visitors’ activities in Seoraksan National Park, South Korea. A total of 1,206 anonymous mobile application users along with their 2,571 activity start points were acquired for January 2015 to December 2015. GIS-based hot spot analyses were employed to analyze the spatial patterns of activity points over time. Results indicated activity hot spots for hours (i.e., dawn, morning, afternoon, and evening) as well as risky points (i.e., falling-rocks, risk of structure collapse, or lightning) during dark hours (night) across seasons. Findings from this study can assist managers to allocate their spatio-temporal park management resources effectively to minimize environmental impacts, and enhance visitor experiences and safety. Furthermore, GPS-based mobile exercise application can be used as an alternative tool to assess spatio-temporal use of visitors in national parks. 

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GPS-based mobile application; hot spot analysis; Seoraksan National Park; South Korea; spatio-temporal patterns; visitors’ activities

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