Assessing the Role of Cultural Attractions at Merkato Market for Tourism Development in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

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Addis Ababa University


Now a day, culture is a major asset for tourism developmentand it is serving as a major factor in the attractiveness of most destinations like Merkato which is an open air market and cultural destination in Addis Ababa City that stands to signify Ethiopian cultural spots. Despite the fact that Merkato cultural attractions play a significant role for tourism development, they were not properly tapped and managed to sustain as a remarkable attraction. Hence this study was designed assessing the role of cultural attraction at Merkato market for tourism development in Addis Ababa Ethiopia.The study employed both qualitative and quantitative research designs, Quantitative data were gathered from both international and domestic tourists and owners of shopping and qualitative data were collected through the semistructured interviews from tour operators ,tour guide, government sector .Purposive and simple random sampling techniques were used to obtain data among 300 hundred sampled participants for interviews and questionnaires. Quantitative and qualitative data were analyzed through descriptive statistics and thematic analysis, respectively.The major attraction of Merkato are rich anddiverse; they comprisereligious institution and their cultural product, souvenirs’ shop, various species, cultural medicine, social interaction tera and berend that explained what they did inside. The findings of thestudy revealed that Merkato open air market now a day’s encounters several challenges, such as lacks of parking area. Safety and security, traffic conjunction, fluctuations in price of cultural attractions and opens air market transactions moving to modern building construction. Due to these factors the biggest open air market has been diminishing its attractiveness. But, this cultural attraction for tourism development plays a huge contribution to the development of a country, so that the government has understood the tourism potentials of the country and made some progresses toward enhancement, protection, promotion, preservation, and sustainable utilization of all cultural. So, the researcher suggested government and different stakeholders to provide required attention to keep this nonrenewable cultural attraction.



Cultural Attraction, Tourism. Merkato, Cultural Tourism, Open Mesuem, Ethiopia