Miguel Torruco Marqués, Mexico’s Secretary of Tourism (SECTUR), announced the new Mexico’s Magical Neighborhoods (Barrios Magicos) program. The initiative seeks to broaden the range of tourist experiences for visitors touring the country.
The precedent of this new program is that of Pueblos Magicos, which emerged in 2001 and became a relevant tourism engine in the country, thanks to the promotion of the cultural, natural, historical, architectural, and gastronomic richness of the 132 destinations.
The Magical Neighborhood Program represents a space in which various elements are combined, which make a locality unique and unrepeatable: history, culture, gastronomy, products, and services, as well as the coexistence of the local population with visitors. A Magical Neighborhood can show a city’s ‘spirit’ and essence.
Magical Neighborhoods Motivate Road Travel
The Secretary of Tourism emphasized that as a first launching stage, SECTUR, in coordination with municipal and state authorities, will select 32 emblematic places, one for each state in the country, capital cities, or the interior.
The great challenge will be to choose those sites that, as part of a municipality, city, or metropolitan area, medium or large, facilitate the integration of tourism products. It also adds service chains; that are representative of the town; that have infrastructure and connectivity; and that can be linked to other tourist destinations through routes or thematic circuits, to mention just some of the aspects to be considered.
“The Magical Neighborhoods, in tandem with the Magic Towns (Pueblos Magicos), will boost, strengthen and motivate road travel. The purpose is to take the tourist above all, towards open spaces, in more intimate contact with nature and the host communities, in keeping with the new post-pandemic tourism trends,” said Torruco Marqués.
The Green Angels will always accompany tourists as they travel along the road network, which the Geointelligence Center already assists. This center locates the corporation’s units in real-time and knows the operator’s name and the estimated attention time.
“The Magical Neighborhoods of Mexico must comply with certain characteristics for their designation, but they will also be entitled to benefits such as the painting of facades, promotional actions, and training courses offered by SECTUR,” said the head of Sectur.
Magical Neighborhoods Preserves Towns
As part of the promotional actions of this program, Mexico’s Magical Neighborhoods will have a presence on the Pueblos Magicos digital platform.
In addition, the program will be promoted through strategies such as the Magical Towns Tianguis, the International Magic Towns Tianguis, and the Mexico Tourism Tianguis. And for the first time, it will be held in Mexico City from March 26 to 29, 2023.
The Magical Neighborhood Program, among other objectives, identifies, values, and preserves towns’ uses, customs, territories, identities, and cultures with a tourist vocation. Also, it supports the conservation and regeneration of their cultural, natural, and biocultural heritage.
The head of SECTUR stated: “Let us take advantage of our enormous tourist heritage to make Mexico an increasingly competitive destination. We have to reaffirm its position in the world ranking, mainly in terms of foreign exchange earnings from international visitors, which is how the tourist potential of a nation is measured.”