According to local press reports, Mexico’s Tourism Minister Gloria Guevara has confirmed that Mexico’s Magic Towns program is being considered for adoption by several other countries. Mexican tourism officials are reportedly advising their counterparts in El Salvador, Ecuador, Colombia and Chile how best to implement the program, which is designed to boost “cultural tourism”, usually to lesser-known, non-resort destinations. The program provides federal government help to improve tourist-related infrastructure and publicity.
Mexico’s own Magic Towns program now has 57 members, and the number shows no sign of slowing down, despite repeated claims by tourism officials that the program was to end this year.
In theory, Magic Towns should have local culture, handicrafts, architecture, festivals, gastronomy or traditions that offer a significant attraction for “sustainable” tourism. In practice, some of the places on the list, especially some of the more recent entries, are of dubious merit. As I’ve suggested in some previous posts, the Magic Towns program appears to be outliving its usefulness.
In a future post, we will take a closer look at the current distribution of Mexico’s Magic Towns.
Related post [with links to our Magic Towns mini-series]: