Geoheritage Information for Geoconservation and Geotourism Through the Categorization of Landforms in a Karstic Landscape. A Case Study from Covalagua and Las Tuerces (Palencia, Spain)


Link to Full Text

Download Full Text

Publication Date


Publication Title


Volume Number



This paper describes a methodological procedure for organizing geoheritage information, aimed at geoconservation and geotourism planning and management in protected areas. This method has been applied in a real-life process to declare the Covalagua and Las Tuerces sites as protected areas in the province of Palencia, in Northern Spain. Although the emphasis is on geoconservation, due to the predominantly karstic characteristics of the studied landscape, the process explains a course of action for the inventory, assessment and diagnosis of geological and geomorphological information for land use planning and management, including geotourism provision. The preparation of the regulations which derived from that information flow is also explained. The inventory included the classification, mapping and description of landforms. The assessment was based on the interpretation of the information in terms of geoconservation and geotourism capacities and limitations, and included a specific analysis of the singularity and representativeness of a bogaz (labyrinth karst) and a sinkhole field. The information which came from that evaluation led to the diagnosis, and to the setting of the planning, use and management goals for the geo-resources. These guidelines were finally articulated as regulations. The procedure described is innovative from a methodological point of view, as it attempts to correct the most common problems found in this type of surveys: (a) the accumulation of a large quantity of geo-information of little use for planning and management purposes and (b) the very limited relationship between the geo-information included in the inventory and that included in the evaluation, diagnosis and regulations phases.


Geoheritage, Geomorphology, Geotourism, Protected areas, Geosite, Karst, Categorization of landforms

Document Type


Digital Object Identifier (DOI)