Just last week, authorities were shocked to find the remains of eight bodies in what appears to be a string of particularly brutal murders in the Mexican tourist hotspot of Cancun. These findings are representative of the growing problem of gang violence in Mexico’s most popular tourist destinations, an issue that has proven especially severe in beach towns such as Acapulco and Los Cabos.
South America’s first sleeper train, The Belmond Andean Explorer in Peru, is scheduled to begin running in May of 2017.
In Rio de Janeiro, a growing crime rate still plagues much of the city and the sound of gunshots and back-alley drug deals are not uncommon occurrences. The torture and murder of a bricklayer from the neighborhood of Rocinha has sparked protests against the corrupt police forces responsible. Despite these ongoing issues, tourists are finding themselves seeking lodging within these neighborhoods. Hotels in Rio are in very short supply and even the most basic hotels have increased their prices to $450 per night during the World Cup1.
With one month until the World Cup, Brazil is rushing to complete the necessary infrastructure to effectively host the tournament, which begins June 12th when Brazil faces Croatia. The Brazilian Ministry of Tourism has estimated the World Cup could result in up to $11 billion USD in direct, indirect and induced economic growth for the country, a number more than 20 times what host South Africa made in 2010.
In recent years, tourist income from all over the world has been flowing into the Cuban economy as visitors take in the sights of Havana and stroll along the sunbaked sands of small beach towns such as Baracoa Varadero and Guanabo that lay on Cuba’s golden coasts.
This article is a commentary on research by Fahrenbruch and Cochran (2014) in San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua. Our study was spurred by the realization that there is a dearth of research on the vulnerability of tourism communities in the developing world, despite the increasing popularity of tourism in these regions (Faulkner 2001; Bowonder and Kasperson 2005).
Recently, the news about the approval of the construction of the Nicaragua Interoceanic Canal have caught the attention of news media and people around the world. Concerns about the detrimental environmental consequences of the megaproject are coupled with unease about the socioeconomic impacts to local communities that could result from their direct displacement and from the lost of access to the resources that support their livelihoods.
The success of the tourism industry depends on government stability and an assurance of personal safety.[i] Not surprisingly, the industry responds immediately to political instability. Even in post-conflict nations where histories of revolution and political uprising become tourism attractions (Babb 2011; Sánchez and Adams 2008), a degree of political and social stability is necessary to bring in tourism development.