The 45th edition of the Tianguis Turístico México was held in Mérida from 16 to 19 November 2021 in the Mérida Siglo XXI Convention and Exhibition Centre. The slogan of this event was « the rebirth of tourism ». After months of pandemic and several postponements of the fair, the rebirth is here. Mexico has decided to live normally with this virus, to open up again to tourists and resume its activities. And the figures from the show tend to prove it.
At a post-show press conference, Miguel Torruco Marqués, Mexico’s Secretary of Tourism, announced all the results of the event, which highlighted all that constitutes the beauty of Mexico. Its nature, its culture, its gastronomy… and so much more.
« This demonstrates and supports the direction of the current administration’s tourism policy, focused on integration, regionalisation and diversification of a product that responds to the tastes and expectations of a more informed and demanding tourist, with a different profile due to the pandemic, » he said.
OBJECTIVES ACHIEVED AND BREAKING ALL RECORDS
All the objectives were achieved and even exceeded. This year’s figures were head-turning. 1,017 companies participated in the event, which brought together no less than 1,635 buyers. Both figures exceed the 2017 record. Another impressive figure is the number of countries present at this edition. 43 countries responded to the call with 3492 exhibitors from 936 companies. This was well above the figures for Acapulco 2019. During these four intense days, no less than 57,287 appointments were recorded in the database. Not to mention the many informal meetings!
And what about the sales? They amounted to 598 million pesos, with nature tourism, cultural tourism, gastronomic tourism, adventure tourism, sun and beach tourism and romantic tourism among the products most offered by exhibitors. Nature was the big winner with 58% of the offers, followed closely by culture with 57% and gastronomy with 55%. It is up to the different tourism actors to create offers, perhaps more à la carte, that can satisfy all the interests of tourists. Among the most popular Mexican destinations, Cancun and the Riviera Maya account for 46% of the requests with 28% and 18% respectively.
PUEBLOS MÁGICOS, TOWNS AND VILLAGES WITH UNIQUE FEATURES
Magical towns (Pueblos Mágicos) accounted for 11% of applications. Similar to the « Most Beautiful Villages of France » label, Pueblos Mágicos is a programme that promotes towns and villages with more than 5,000 inhabitants that offer visitors a magical experience through their rich culture, natural beauty, traditions, folklore, cuisine, etc. Towns and villages that have characteristics that make them unique and historically significant, but that also meet the strict selection criteria The Pueblos Mágicos programme takes its name from the French association Club des Villages Magiques, which was founded in 1935 by the publisher Paul Morihien, the painter Jean Cocteau and the sports journalist Dimitri Philippoff. This association then merged in 1956-1957 with Club Polynésie to form Club Med. In Mexico, this programme was launched in 2001. In 2019, it totalled 121 towns and villages in the 31 states that make up the country. It has helped to structure a diversified tourism offering, preserve local traditions and customs, create new tourism products (ecotourism, extreme sports and wine and food), enhance the appeal of these towns and villages to meet growing visitor demand and create jobs and reduce poverty. In Yucatán, the state where this 45th Tianguis Turistico México was held, Izamal (the yellow city) and Valladolid are two cities that have received the « label » Pueblos Mágicos. From 22 to 24 April, the first International Tianguis Turistico de Pueblos Mágicos will take place in Barcelona, Spain.
FABULOUS EXCURSIONS OUTSIDE THE TIANGUIS TURÍSTICO
Outside the walls of the fair, numerous excursions and familiarisation itineraries on the different themes of gastronomy, culture, ecotourism and many others were organised for international investors, tour operators, wholesalers, other buyers, journalists, etc. They were able to discover the Reserva de Xibalbá by Xcaret, which will open its doors to the public in June 2022, as well as must-see sites such as Uxmal or the Celestún Biosphere Reserve. During the fair, sumptuous parties were organised in magnificent haciendas (Hacienda Xcanatún by Angsana, Hacienda Xtepén, Hacienda Teya, Hacienda Santa Cruz) by Yucatán, Guerrero, Guanajuato…
Although the figures for the 45th Tianguis Turístico México – the most important tourist event in Latin America – broke many records, they will only be reflected in per capita income and expenditure in the year 2022. The next edition will take place from 22 to 25 May in Acapulco, Guerrero. That is, of course, if a new variant does not come along to spoil the party.