In Turkey, highlands have been used as venues for livestock and summer recreation for many years. Today, however, they are subject to alternative tourism and recreation activities, which dramatically change the nature in these regions. Because of natural beauties, “Touristic Centers” for eco-tourism have started rapidly in these places for the last three decades. Uzungöl, which belongs to Çaykara district of the Trabzon province, is one of the first of these tourism centers. In this study, temporal and spatial land use changes of the Uzungöl tourism center that has a national and international importance were analyzed using aerial photographs and GIS. For this purpose, aerial photographs of 1973 - 2002, and base map of 2008 were examined to determine the dimensions of the construction in the region. The results of the analysis have shown that, the region has undergone a heavy construction in the last 35 years. A very significant increase in the number of buildings (91%), which is especially concentrated in a particular watershed protection area around the lake, has been identified. Results indicate that, Uzungöl is under an unplanned development period, which is away from the scope of eco-tourism wonderland sustainability and/or intervention with the general plan of construction work.
Key words: Aerial photograph, ecotourism, GIS, land use change, Uzungöl.
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