Keeping the spirit of each place is the greatest challenge posed by interventions in heritage sites. The delicacy of
the environments that host these sites entails that the adaptations required to serve tourism be conceived in full harmony
with the surrounding context. This paper starts from the recognition that sustainable design, linked to the principles
of sustainable tourism and particularly of ecotourism, is an operative and instrumental basis for the physical planning
of sustainable tourism projects. The paper presents an application of sustainability criteria to the planning and
design of an archaeological park, located in Quebrada de Humahuaca (a World Heritage Site in Argentina). Its aim
is thus to expose the planning and sustainable design process that was carried out at different projecting scales, from
the general zoning to the technological resolution of the park's facilities. It communicates the results obtained from the
design experimentation and exploration, which were generated from the very local resources. As a conclusion, it is
found that sustainable design allows the transfer of ecotourism principles to the physical planning level of the tourist
activity. In this case, it is demonstrated that the setting out of sustainable criteria in terms of context, function, formality
and technology is essential to help a sustainable tourist product comes to fruition. Success in conservation, protection
and valuation of the existing resources in heritage destinations will depend on the degree of suitability of sustainable
design measures at each intervention scale.
Keywords : Sustainable Tourism, Ecotourism, Cultural Tourism, Sustainable Design.
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