Yep, its halfway through the year but still a great time, and in plenty of time, to check out what’s tracking in travel trends for 2012.
One thing of which I am particularly proud is that Black Meetings & Tourism magazine (BM&T), in collaboration with Travel Professionals of Color (TPOC), have proclaimed 2012 as the “Year of African-American Heritage Tourism.” And it’s not surprising, given that in recent years African Americans have been one of the fastest growing segments of the travel and tourism industry.
What I love about this announcement even more, is that according to BM&T, the TPOC and other Afrocentric-focused travel entities, it’s not just about our interest in heritage travel, rather that numerous destinations, organizations and others are making significant and heartfelt efforts to highlight heritage and cultural travel that appeals to a wide variety of ethnicities and cultures.
In BM&T’s press release Gloria M. Herbert, its associate publisher and editor, is quoted as saying, “This growing interest in our heritage as a people is nothing new … But with recent developments, such as TPOC’s Heritage Tourism Certification Program, the ongoing popularity of the annual African Diaspora Heritage Trail Conference, and efforts by destinations like Miami, St. Martin, Philadelphia, Birmingham, the Dominican Republic and Columbia, SC to establish and or further develop or promote heritage trails, the time could not be more appropriate for us to proclaim 2012 the Year of African-American Heritage Tourism” …
Among the other destinations they note are Toronto and Windsor, Canada; Ghana and South Africa; the U.S. Virgin Islands; Trinidad & Tobago; Barbados; Buffalo, New York; and Detroit, Michigan.
Pack Your Bags!
In addition to destinations focused on heritage tourism, there are a bevy of others that are high on the radar this year.
Among them is Fodor’s, one of the world’s premier travel resources (books and on the web). Fodor’s has put out a guide to the 21 best places to go in 2012, dividing them by “Buzzy Destinations,” “Emerging Hotspots,” “Great Value,” and “Noteworthy Events.”
Among those “buzzing” for them this year are Scrub Island, the first resort development in the British Virgin Islands in over 15 years; Cusco, high in the Peruvian Andes; and Charleston, for what they call its “foodie-centric” ambiance. Budapest and Portugal are among their Great Values, and they name South Korea, Panama and Cuba as 2012 Hot Spots.
I’ve got more great resources for you coming up!