Rural tourism as a driver of the economic and rural development in the Republic of Serbia




rural tourism, rural areas, agriculture, economic development


Rural tourism supports the linking of the economic, social and environmental development elements, while boosting employment and stepping up rural development This paper aims to assess the importance of rural tourism in terms of the economic and rural development in the Republic of Serbia. The Kruskal-Wallis test was used to compare the values referring to the number of registered tourist arrivals and overnight stays per region. According to the research findings, the region of Šumadija and Western Serbia has the largest number of rural households and also records the highest number of tourist arrivals and overnight stays. In developed countries, the tourism industry strongly supports the agricultural sector by creating new jobs and contributing to the overall economic development, however, the situation is quite different in Serbia. Furthermore, considering the EU, where the rural areas cover a large part of the overall territory, it is exactly the rural areas that account for a significant number of overnight stays and accommodation facilities.


Download data is not yet available.


Akkoyunlu, S. (2015). The potential of rural–urban linkages for sustainable development and trade. International Journal of Sustainable Development & World Policy, 4(2), 20–40.

Alina, N. (2015). Development of rural tourism in the European context. Annals of the “Constantin Brâncu?i” University of Târgu Jiu, Economy Series, 2(1), 199–202.

Ana, M. I. (2017). Ecotourism, agro-tourism and rural tourism in the European Union. Cactus Tourism Journal, 15(2), 6–14.

Apostolopoulos, N., Liargovas, P., Stavroyiannis, S., Makris, I., Apostolopoulos, S., Petropoulos, D., & Anastasopoulou, E. (2020). Sustaining rural areas, rural tourism enterprises and EU development policies: A multi-layer conceptualisation of the obstacles in Greece. Sustainability, 12(18), 7687.

Awokuse, T. O., & Xie, R. (2014). Does agriculture really matter for economic growth in developing countries? Canadian Journal of Agricultural Economics, 63(1), 77–99.

Carvache-Franco, M., Carvache-Franco, W., Carvache-Franco, O., & Borja-Morán, J. (2022). Motivations as a predictor of satisfaction and loyalty in ecotourism. Journal of Outdoor Recreation and Tourism, 37, 100478.

Cvijanović, D., Pantović, D., & Đorđević, N. (2021). Transformation from urban to rural tourism during the COVID-19 pandemic: The case of Serbia. In J. Subić et al. (Eds)., Sustainable Agriculture and Rural Development (pp. 123–133). Belgrade, Serbia: Institute of Agricultural Economics.

Čavić, S., & Mandarić, M. (2021). Authenticity of gastronomic events as a function of branding a destination. Menadžment u hotelijerstvu i turizmu – Hotel and Tourism Management, 9(1), 89–101.

Čerović, S., Knežević, M., Matović, V., & Brdar, I. (2015). The contribution of tourism industry on the GDP growth of Western Balkan countries. Industrija, 43(3), 159–170.

Dašić, B., & Labović, B. (2020). Agrarian and tourist potential of rural areas in Serbia. In D. Cvijanović et al. (Eds.), Tourism in Function of Development of the Republic of Serbia - Tourism and Rural Development (pp. 130–146). Vrnja?ka Banja, Serbia: Faculty of Hotel Management and Tourism in Vrnja?ka Banja.

Dašić, D., Živković, D., & Vujić, T. (2020). Rural tourism in development function of rural areas in Serbia. Economics of Agriculture, 67(3), 719–733.

Dimitrijević, M., Ristić, L., & Despotović, D. (2021). Rural development of regions of the Republic of Serbia in terms of employment and sources of income. The Annals of the Faculty of Economics in Subotica, 57(46), 131–148.

Đor0273ević, D. Ž., Šušić, V., & Janjić, I. (2019). Perspectives of development of rural tourism of the Republic of Serbia. Economic Themes, 57(2), 219–232.

Eurostat (2022). General and regional statistics – Degree of urbanisation – Tourism. Retrieved March 3, 2022 from

Fawaz, F., Rahnama, M., & Stout, B. (2014). An empirical refinement of the relationship between tourism and economic growth. Anatolia - An International Journal of Tourism and Hospitality Research, 25(3), 352–363.

Gajić, A., Krunić, N., & Protić, B. (2021). Classification of rural areas in Serbia: Framework and implications for spatial planning. Sustainability, 13(4), 1596.

Jane Warne, S., & Thompson, M. (2022). Future approaches to evaluating tourism in the developing world: Assessing realism in the Solomon Islands. Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Management, 50, 391–399.

Jurjević, Ž., Zekić, S., Đokić, D., & Matkovski, B. (2021). Regional spatial approach to differences in rural economic development: Insights from Serbia. Land, 10(11), 1211.

Liu, C., Dou, X., Li, J., & Cai, L. A. (2020). Analyzing government role in rural tourism development: An empirical investigation from China. Journal of Rural Studies, 79, 177–188.

McAreavey, R., & McDonagh, J. (2010). Sustainable rural tourism: Lessons for rural development. Sociologia Ruralis, 51(2), 175–194.

Miljković, M. M., El Bilali, H., & Berjan, S. (2010). Rural economy diversification in Serbia. Research Journal of Agricultural Science, 42(3), 684–691.

Ministarstvo poljoprivrede, šumarstva i vodoprivrede [Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management]. (2019). Vodić za korisnike IPARD II programa [IPARD II User Guide]. Retrieved March 11, 2022 from

Ministarstvo poljoprivrede, šumarstva i vodoprivrede [Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management]. (2020). Saopštenja poljoprivredne politike - Spisak poljoprivrednih i prehrambenih proizvoda (osim vina i jakih alkoholnih pića) sa oznakom geografskog porekla koji su sertifikovani u 2020. godini. [Agricultural policy announcements - List of agricultural and food products (except wine and spirits) with the indication of geographical origin that are certified in 2020]. Retrieved March 11, 2022 from

Muresan, I., Oroian, C., Harun, R., Arion, F., Porutiu, A., Chiciudean, G. … Lile, R. (2016). Local residents’ attitude toward sustainable rural tourism development. Sustainability, 8(1), 100.

Mwesiumo, D., Halfdanarson, J., & Shlopak, M. (2022). Navigating the early stages of a large sustainability-oriented rural tourism development project: Lessons from Træna, Norway. Tourism Management, 89, 104456.

Naseem, S. (2021). The role of tourism in economic growth: Empirical evidence from Saudi Arabia. Economies, 9(3), 117.

Park, D.-B., & Yoon, Y.-S. (2010). Developing sustainable rural tourism evaluation indicators. International Journal of Tourism Research, 13(5), 401–415.

Reardon, T., Berdegué, J., & Escobar, G. (2001). Rural nonfarm employment and incomes in Latin America: Overview and policy implications. World Development, 29(3), 395–409.

Republički zavod za statistiku [Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia – SORS] (2011-2021). Statisti?ki godišnjak [Statistical Yearbook]. Retrieved March 8, 2022 from

Roman, M., Roman, M., Prus, P., & Szczepanek, M. (2020). Tourism competitiveness of rural areas: Evidence from a region in Poland. Agriculture, 10(11), 569.

Ruiz-Real, J. L., Uribe-Toril, J., de Pablo Valenciano, J., & Gázquez-Abad, J. C. (2020). Rural tourism and development: Evolution in scientific literature and trends. Journal of Hospitality & Tourism Research, 109634802092653.

Schweinsberg, S., Fennell, D., & Hassanli, N. (2021). Academic dissent in a post COVID-19 world. Annals of Tourism Research, 91, 103289.

Trukhachev, A. (2015). Methodology for evaluating the rural tourism potentials: A tool to ensure sustainable development of rural settlements. Sustainability, 7(3), 3052–3070.

Vuković, P. (2017). Character and dynamics of development rural tourism in the Republic of Serbia. Ekonomika, 63(4), 53–60.

World Bank (2022a). Tcdata360. Retrieved March 8, 2022 from

World Bank (2022b). Indicators. Retrieved March 8, 2022 from

World Economic Forum (2019). Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index. Retrieved March 8, 2022 from




How to Cite

Dimitrijević, M., Ristić, L., & Bošković, N. (2022). Rural tourism as a driver of the economic and rural development in the Republic of Serbia. Hotel and Tourism Management, 10(1), 79–90.



Original Scientific Papers


Most read articles by the same author(s)

Similar Articles

<< < 1 2 

You may also start an advanced similarity search for this article.