This study aimed at identifying the factors that likely favor or hinder the development of cruise tourism in an emerging Southern Italian tourist destination. We conducted semi-structured interviews with key players in this business, showing that the following are relevant enablers of cruise tourism development: the accessibility of tourist resources, the supply of integrated services to cruise lines and their passengers, cooperative relationships among private and public operators, and the creation of a distinctive image. However, cruise tourism development can be inhibited by poor professionalism on the part of tourist firms, the lack of a clear tourist regulatory framework, the fragmentation of the shore-based offer, and the risk of environmental degradation. The study thus contributes to the research on cruise tourism development, which is still in its infancy, and provides policymakers and practitioners with suggestions for facilitating the emergence of the cruise industry.
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