Tag Archives: planeta.com

August 12 #MexMonday Travel Hangout

by Ron Mader

Planeta.com’s next #MexMonday Travel Hangout takes place Monday, August 12, from 4-5pm Mexico City time and will focus on Mexico. Planeta’s Mexico hangouts are unscripted conversation mostly in English and a smattering of Spanish and indigenous languages. Prepare to be adventurous and learn new words and phrases like yakxon and baax ka walik.

Questions are welcome before and during the livestreaming hangout. We pay special attention to the tweets on Twitter that have used the #MexMonday hashtag.

Our August conversation will be eclectic, reviewing on-the-ground and under-the-radar attractions in Mexico as well as Mexico on the Web, including social web channels Facebook, Flickr, Google+, Ranker, Slideshare, Twitter and YouTube. We will discuss current and upcoming events, recommended places, travel tips and tours, language classes and favorite foods including chocolatemole and mezcal.

You can RSVP and post your favorite Mexico resources online our Google+ event page:

Trivia Questions

Which Mexican park was recently added to UNESCO’s World Heritage List? Tip: the answer is on their Facebook page.
In November which Mexican city hosts a congress for World Heritage Cities?
Which Mexican churches are dedicated to the Assumption of the Virgin Mary?
Which Mexican baseball teams are in contention in the 2013 playoffs?

Planeta Directories
Learning Spanish in Mexico
Traveling in Mexico

What’s new?

Indigenous Peoples Week
Oaxaca: Tianguis Pochote Xochimilco Anniversary
Markets of Oaxaca – Transitions Abroad
Working legally in Mexico – Transitions Abroad
Four Strategies for Mexico to be a World Tourism Power
Xochimilco 360
Playas Limpias

Slideshare Faves

Mexico Now
Mezcal Treasure Hunt
Indigenous Oaxaca

Wiki Wiki

mexico night
la betulia
df, aka mexico city


What’s your favorite professional club in Mexico?
What’s your favorite colonial city in Mexico?

#MexMonday Travel Hangout August 12

Responsible Tourism in Cities: South Africa and Mexico

by Ron Mader

The date is set for the Responsible Tourism in Cities Conference in Durban, South Africa: the morning of May 6, as part of the Indaba tourism conference. The event is presented by The City of Cape Town in partnership with Cape Town Tourism and South African Tourism. Media partners include Planeta.com, the website I founded in 1994.

I’m looking forward to the opportunity to cross the Atlantic! There’s so much to learn when comparing more than two countries.

While in South Africa, I hope to arrange a Photosafari or two along the lines of the events we’ve conducted in Llano Park in Oaxaca.

Space is available for 100 delegates at the conference venue and any number of virtual delegates via livestreaming video and Twitter. We already have a few participants registered from Mexico! Register to participate here.

The Responsible Tourism in Cities Conference seeks to bring together leaders in local government, sustainable tourism and social media, focusing on a practical set of issues – conservation and tourism in cities. It will help city officials, community organizations, the private sector, academics, NGOs, activists and other stakeholders understand some of the key issues underlying responsible tourism in cities, and will equip them with practical knowledge and resources to help make a positive contribution toward implementing responsible tourism in their city destination.

Please let me know what you think Mexico could teach the world about responsible travel. If there is interest, we’ll conduct similar events in Mexico.


Turismo Responsable en las Ciudades

Slow Travel in Mexico

Slow Travel / Turismo Lento, originally uploaded by planeta.

by Ron Mader

Slow travel allows visitors to enjoy more than the adrenaline kick of speeding through a foreign landscape. To enrich your vacation, you need to meet the people which is the focal point of the growing local tourism movement.

Slow travel requires thoughtful preparation, learning about the places to be visited beforehand while allowing one’s self to be surprised once you arrive. There is the experience itself and staying in contact after this journey.

What are your thoughts about what constitutes slow travel in Mexico?


by Ron Mader

As part of the global celebration of World Environment Day, Planeta.com presents the tenth annual Colibri Ecotourism Awards honoring the work of Allan Rhodes and Verena Gerber.

The Colibri Ecotourism Award recognizes leaders who are at the forefront of innovative measures to protect cultural and natural heritage in Mexico. The winner of the 2010 Colibri Ecotoursm Award is Alan Rhodes. This year we also present the Colibri Ecolodge Award to Verena Gerber, founder of the EcoParaiso ecolodge.

“Allan stands at the forefront of Mexican ecotourism leaders who are equally talented in working with communities and officials on the ground and communicating this work online,” said Planeta.com founder Ron Mader. The development of Ecoturismo Genuino and its accompanying online community are thanks to Allan’s long-standing commitment to connecting players working in the virtual and natural worlds.

Mexico’s esteemed park system plays a critical role in protecting biodiversity while creating employment for locals. Allan’s work stands as a model for those integrating conservation and tourism in these areas.

EcoParaiso offers responsible tourism and an alternative to mass tourism,” Mader said. “There is a growing market for smaller places that respect the environment. EcoParaiso has set a high standard and provides a positive financial impact for the people of Celestún and a positive environmental impact for the wilderness area of the Celestún Biosphere Reserve.


As part of the global celebration of World Environment Day (June 5), Planeta.com presents the annual Colibri Ecotourism Award (2001-) to a leading catalyst working toward ecotourism and responsible travel in Mexico!

Things you can do to support the Colibri Ecotourism Award

Congratulate the winners!
Work with the winners!
Add the Colibri logo to your website
Talk up Mexico’s ecotourism and responsible travel options
Talk up Mexico’s ecotourism and responsible travel options on your website
Talk up Mexico’s ecotourism and responsible travel options using Web 2.0: Blog, Tweet and Flickr!
Support the winners by adding a link to their website and Web 2.0 channels
Add photos to the Colibri Flickr Groups: Re-Imagining North American Ecotourism, Si mas Bicicletas, Mexican palette, Birds of the World!, Árboles de Oaxaca (Oaxaca Trees) and Sustainable tea, coffee and chocolate
Fave the Colibri Slideshow

Más Alla

by Ron Mader

This week I received via the dreaded email attachment the poster (seen below) about an upcoming tourism conference in Oaxaca. The idea behind the poster is great and asks academics and academic wannabees to think about tourism that goes beyond the books (más alla de los libros). But walk the talk! In terms of conversing about tourism using the Web (más alla de los libros), this conference and many like it fall short. Woefully short.

Personally, I find this event and many of its kin, truly wonderful hip and up-to-date venues … provided you’re living in 1977. If you’re not living in the Lost Universe that asks where where you when Star Wars debuted, then you might ask, what would it be like to promote tourism in 2010? Here is where Mexico falls short. Tianguis Turistico? Great idea a few decades ago. Not so much in the 2010s.

Don’t get me wrong. Mexico has wonderful options for visitors and locals, but conversing about the long tail of options is where officials fail and where TripAdvisor, Flickr and YouTube succeed in the current info climate. What worked in the 1970s simply will not thrive in the 2010s. We’re beyond Peak Oil and we’re beyond Peak Tourism. What can work is slow travel and the burgeoning local travel movement.

Foodies love Mexico and it makes sense to have events that showcase local cuisine. I invite anyone visiting Oaxaca to try out the chocolate and mezcal treasure hunts.

Looking beyond this particular event, what should event organizers change? Almost everything and we have a few ideas on making conferences more engaging for locals and visitors. Highly recommended listening is the ABC program The Future of Conferences.

On the bright side, most countries are adapting to the new digital divide measured no longer but whether or not do you or do you not use the Web but how well you use it as a tool for conversation instead of as a megaphone.

Más Alla de Los Libros

Día del Artesano

by Ron Mader

Happy Día del Artesano! The party is in full swing this weekend in Oaxaca City, one of the chief hubs of folk art in Mexico.

Whether you are seeking jewelry, woven rugs, shawls, ceramics or elaborate wooden figures, the famous alebrijes, you could be overwhelmed by the variety and quality of local crafts. Our suggestion – take your time, read a bit before you arrive and visit a few of the stores and artesanos. For tips, check out Planeta.com’s index of where to buy crafts.

This spring I have had the pleasure of collaborating with a number of artesano friends and we’ll be highlighting the 2010 Easter Market beginning next Friday. Keep an eye on Oaxaca Folk Art!

Dia del Artesano (Folk Artist Day!)