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Jonathan Tourtellot

of National Geographic Traveler

The Places We Love VI: Grenada on the Cusp

One of the last authentically Caribbean islands seeks to become a leader in sustainability. But can Grenada sustain its own unique character?

Louisiana’s Best-Kept Secret Now a World Heritage Site

On Sunday the U.S. succesfully asked for World Heritage recognition of a remarkable archaeological site that you’ve probably never heard of:
Poverty Point, Louisiana.
So, what is it?

OAS Nod Leads Off a 2013 Geotourism Roundup

Well into its second decade, the geotourism proposition—that it’s good to develop tourism business based on the character of the place being visited—gains an endorsement from the Organization of American States. Read more for a roundup of 2013 geotourism goings on.

The Places We Love V: First Global Summit on Sense of Place?

“People think that geography is about capitals, land forms, and so on. But it is about place – its emotional tone, social meaning, and generative potential.” – Dr. Yi-Fu Tuan, “Father of Humanist Geography,” scheduled speaker at a novel October summit.

New Book Will Open Your Eyes About Travel

From France to Disneyland to Cambodia, from tour buses to cruise ships to sex tours, Elizabeth Becker’s new book spotlights the true inner workings of what some call the world largest industry: Travel and tourism.

The Places We Love IV: Heritage Advocates Want Cruise Ships Tamed

At a first-of-a-kind international symposium in Charleston, SC, heritage experts look at how cruise ships can transform historic port cities. They find that big is not better. Not at all.

The One Billionth Tourist

Today, for the one billionth time this year, yet another tourist crossed an international border. That’s a historic milestone. According to the United Nations World Tourism Organization, 2012 will mark the first year in history to register more than a billion international arrivals. UNWTO picked Dec. 13 as the most likely day for the moment…

4 Costly Myths About World Heritage

As the 40th anniversary year of the World Heritage Convention draws to a close, many Americans remain oddly estranged from the program that could be proudly labelled “Made in the U.S.A.” That costs jobs.

Archaeologists Blast Hasty World Heritage Listings

One of the most significant global committees that you never heard of summoned a couple of hundred experts to the island of Menorca, Spain last week. The meeting involved politics, the remnants of great civilizations, human catastrophes, architectural triumphs, religious works of art and architecture, use of tourism, the rise and fall of empires, and…

The Places We Love III: Yikes, Can This Be How the Big Money at Davos Views Travel?

The 10 best destinations in the eyes of business leaders are not necessarily the ones a traveler would pick. Are decision-makers relying on data that can show bad as good? Take a look at how the World Economic Forum rates countries for tourism.

UNESCO’s Geoparks “Clarify” Geotourism

An International Congress in Portugal tries to resolve confusion about a key approach to the way destinations welcome travelers by determining what exactly is “geotourism”?

The Places We Love II: Hang Your Kids Over a Cliff and Turn Them On to Nature

Do eco-thrill attractions actually help people learn anything about ecology? Jonathan Tourtellot visits a nature theme park in Vancouver, B.C. and gets some surprise insights about the rain forest—and about long-term thinking.

The Places We Love I: Charleston at Odds

A proposal for a new cruise ship pier in historic Charleston, SC, has sparked a hot civic debate. Worries over ever-growing cruise ship crowds could derail an otherwise attractive renewal plan. Sustainable-destinations expert Jonathan Tourtellot reports on his dip into the fray.