Tourist boom in Mexico’s Tulum

Americas Now

Tourist boom in Mexico’s Tulum

Most countries favor investment in tourism because it provides jobs and stimulates economic growth. But there is a downside to tourism too. Take Mexico, for example. A tourist boom is bringing in big revenue. But it’s also bringing big threats to the environment.

The beautiful beach paradise of Tulum, has been drawing travelers, particularly from the New York area, in droves.

Located on Mexico’s Yucatan peninsula, this once, sleepy, beach village has gone from hammock heaven to a must-visit magnet of chic bungalow hotels and restaurants, in a decade. But development has begun to put this tony town in peril.

The big resorts and all the swimmers and snorkelers have contributed to an increase in garbage, smelly seaweed growth and, some say, pollution of fresh water holes called Cenotes.

Correspondent Gerry Hadden visits this hot spot. He talks to both visitors and residents of Tulum, where tour guide Melchior Gamboa tells Gerry the crowds can reach to up to 5,000 a day.

Gerry Hadden also speaks to fishermen and an environmentalist, and discusses the importance of achieving an environmental balance, cultivating tourism while protecting the land, water and wildlife.

Tourist boom in Mexico’s Tulum

Tourist boom in Mexico’s Tulum

Most countries favor investment in tourism because it provides jobs and stimulates economic growth. But there is a downside to tourism too. Take Mexico, for example. A tourist boom is bringing in big revenue. But it’s also bringing big threats to the environment.

Most visitors, like New Yorker Matt Lesser, feel at home in Tulum and want to return. But as Gerry’s report makes clear, sustainability is the key.

Take a trip with Gerry Hadden to picture-esque Tulum, and see the surf, sun and the effect of tourism on the terrain.

According to The Mexican Tourism Board, 2014 was a record-breaking year for International Tourism with 14 million tourists visiting the country from abroad. Of that number over 50 percent were from the United States.