In order to develop Mahahual into a socially and ecologically responsible destination, we must fully consider and investigate the effects of tourism, as it is the greatest source of income for the local community. Being the second most visited cruise port in Mexico, Mahahual receives large amounts of tourists from around the world throughout the year. With a current maximum of 4 cruise ships at the same time during the high season, there can be around 18,000 tourists visiting Mahahual in one day. In comparison, the village is estimated to have a population of 2,000 inhabitants. Some negative impacts of tourism that have been noted include lack of infrastructure management and public services, high cost of living, and environmental damage.
The tourism research is presently twofold. On one side we aim to collaborate with the tourism industry to better understand its structure and organisation. On the other side, we communicate with the local community to see what sustainable goods and services they can offer; thus, allowing them to directly benefit from tourism.
Combining these two outlooks, we strive to create a solid network of local organisations, businesses, and individuals which can then contribute to the development of Mahahual as a responsible tourism destination. With the help of this network, we hope to propose solutions to existing problems caused by tourism.
If you are a tourist and want to help us with this project, you can answer our questionnaire: https://forms.gle/aTDqxCy535K5M7gn8