home Local, Travel The Value of Place

The Value of Place

Photo: Irene’s atole (Oaxaca, Mexico)

Place = A space, area, or spot

What makes a place special are the people who share the space. What makes trips so grand is the journey itself and connecting with locals on their turf. The way these first-person adventures treat the places and people beyond the horizon is a narrative balanced with how locals treat visitors.

Travelers are seeking place-based information. Where is Point A in relation to Point B. What else is nearby? The good news is that of this is available via apps. The better news is when locals are involved. This is not to say that those seeking travel tips are not looking for eco options, but first and foremost on their minds are the basics of getting from here to there.

Effective google searches regularly include multiple terms that include a place name and an activity or interest. Examples: Honduras + Rainforest, Australia + Permaculture, Oaxaca + Weavings.

About place
Places comprise not only the physical realm, but also the environmental and spiritual worlds.

Places are enjoyed best by those who pay attention. Even those looking for a weekend-getaway are seeking a connection with a particular place and that takes some preparation.

Places are also interpreted via collective and individual ‘memory’ which varies among stakeholders and age groups. Those interested in place-based travel tend to be interested for longer periods of time.

Locals and travelers have long cared about place, but only since the ’80s has the notion become articulated as a concept worthy of reflection and review. E-conferences such as the 2001 Media, Environment and Tourism Conference focused on the urgent need to improve media coverage of place as opposed to destination.

Some of our favorite place-based websites are created by those who live in the locale. We argue that travel writers ought to be paid fairly and that the best coverage — online or as guidebooks — are written by those who live in a specific place or by those who cultivate long-term relations with locals.


  • What is the value of place?


Place is back – how did we ever lose it?
The tale of two slums in South Africa as residents seek to upgrade lives@thisisplace

Elsewhere on the Web
Rebuilding Place

Flickr Places
Places (Design Oberserver)@PlacesJournal

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