ECOTOURISM AND CULTURAL INTEREST OF A NATURAL SITE: KARST LANDSCAPE IN A CAVE OF EL KAF IN THE ORIENTAL REGION OF MOROCCO
The site of the El Kaf cave in Sefrou is located in the rural town of Aïn-Sfa, 30 km north of Oujda city that is in eastern region of Morocco about many kilometers from the Moroccan-Algerian border. It’s an ecotourism site with a source of water purity and benefits from an impressive geomorphological quality to visit. In terms of the process of mobilizing underground ecotourism in Morocco, it is interesting to conduct a study of tourism development, geoscientific importance and the use of a cultural dimension. El Kaf cave presents a much richer history, requiring the support of scientific interpretation and a tourist guide. This geosite therefore describes the historical relationship between the men of yesteryear and the environment that surrounded them. Although this geosite benefits from a protection status of the rural municipality, it remains threatened and damaged by human actions. The results of this study could be used in the proposal of an ecotourism development plan for the geosite studied, valuation and associating the scientific with the cultural, which can be applied to caves of similar cultural interest.
Keywords: Karst, El Kaf cave, Ecotourism, Culture and history, Northeastern of Morocco