Ecotourism is defined as intentional activity to natural and cultural areas to appreciate nature. The main objective of this review was to examine ecotourism potentials, challenges and opportunities in Ethiopia. To achieve the objective, relevant published scientific literatures were used as data sources. These data were obtained from freely accessible search engines. The review paper was done using common and freely accessible search engines such as Google Scholars, Science Direct and Research Gates. The result of empirical review shows that natural resources and landscape, cultural heritage, battles (historical places), archaeological sites are among ecotourism potentials in Ethiopia. Human induced factors and demographic changes (overgrazing, deforestation, illegal hunting, uncontrolled fire, and population growth, conflicts of interest over resource use, industrialization and agricultural expansion) are the main constraints for ecotourism development in the country. Lack of facilities (such as inadequate infrastructure, financial problems, lack of accommodation, inaccessible market, and low income), poor qualities of human resources and lack of awareness and coordination among stakeholders, institutional problems, climate change, invasive species and diseases are also challenges of ecotourism in the country. The presences of natural, cultural resources, historical sites as well as policies, legal and institutional frameworks are opportunities for ecotourism development in the Ethiopia. Therefore, based on the review result, incorporating different stakeholders, implementing the established polices, legal and institutional frameworks should be made so as to make strong tourism sector in the country. The review also recommends meeting ecotourism facilities, capacity building and creating awareness for local communities and staff members, conducting different mitigation strategies should be made by concerned bodies.
Key words: Ecotourism, challenges, cultural heritages, opportunities, prospect, protected areas.
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