“‘The times they are a-changin’”, sang Bob Dylan in 1964, a personal plea aimed at stalwarts of the ‘old guard’ to open their minds to the changing values and norms of a new generation – a generation impacted by national as well as international events that fostered, among other things, a growing awareness of social inclusion as part of our collective future. Over the last 40+ years this idea has become a reality, a trend that has affected not only social exchanges, but also economic ones. Today, that change can also be measured by the exponential growth of international travel.
The World Travel Organization (UNWTO), a United Nations agency focused on global tourism – specifically on sustainability, social responsibility, economic growth, and inclusive development – has played an important role in this phenomenon. Every year they sponsor a ‘World Tourism Day’ (https://wtd.unwto.org/content/wtd-2018-about-world-tourism-day) during which a specific, currently relevant theme is explored. This year, on September 27th, the theme is ‘Tourism and the Digital Transformation’, a look into how advances in technology “can [and have] improved entrepreneurship, inclusion, local community empowerment, and efficient resource management” to essentially build bridges across global lines, an effort that has also brought the wonders of Cusco to the attention of travelers all over the world.
Our mission here at MLP includes all of the above, both locally and globally, and we have witnessed first-hand this rapid growth and influx of new visitors. We have also had a front-row seat from which to enjoy the growing international diversity of our guests, both on our signature adventures and trip extensions in Peru, an indicator that our own ‘digital transformation’ and increased outreach capabilities are, indeed, very real.
It used to be that traveling to Peru sounded far-fetched, mythical even, and most visitors to Cusco and Machu Picchu specifically, were ‘adventure-types’: trekkers, mountaineers, and globe-trotting ‘hippies’ satisfying their wanderlust. As Machu Picchu became better known, the profile of its visitors began to shift; however, most limited their visits to Lima and, of course, this iconic secret citadel of the Incas. Today, many more travelers are aware that Peru has a vast wealth of diverse regions and iconic destinations beyond Cusco, and are expanding their itineraries to explore them.
Many of our MLP guests have been interested in doing just that. Some are drawn to the lush Peruvian Amazon or the mysterious lines in the desert of Nazca. Others have Lake Titicaca or a visit to the charming city of Arequipa on their agendas. With that in mind, we have curated our own group of trip extensions in Peru to complement our guests’ MLP adventures. Please contact one of our travel specialists for more information. Happy travels!