2 Comments

  • Murghchanay

    Authenticity is a construct of the tourism industry anyways. Like places can’t change because they are not in the US and Europe and have to cater to some stereotypes because the tourist bought tours based on that stereotype? Let the people of Ipoh decide if it’s good or bad. The real question is whether tourist dollars benefit the community or external investors or foreigners who open up guesthouses and cafés at the expense of the local community

  • minoritynomad

    I wanted to share this shot from my time in Ipoh Malaysia. A small town that most people outside of ASEAN even know about. It’s one of those cities with that slow life charm that people love to explore and “discover”. And it’s also one of those places I’m terrified to tell people about. A good friend of mine started a discussion about if tourism is ruining places for locals. This is something we discuss quite often as professional travelers. And I tend to place the responsibility on governments to regulate the impact tourism has on local communities. However, I’m not naive. I realized the reach an impact “influencers” have on travel and how destinations can change both positively and negatively. Which is why sometimes I keep gems to myself. lol.
    But whats the balance? The line between helping locals with tourism dollars and gentrifying/new colonizing a place?
    This is called Concubine Lane or Panglima Lima. A street where wealthy Chinese merchants and British officials housed their mistresses according to legend. Another story is the area was bought up by a wealthy miner Yat Tet Shin. With him giving a street to each of his 3 wives. Either way, this area has remain beautifully preserved. But as you stroll through the streets and speak with locals you can see the shifting priorities to appeasing mass tourism. Similar to what happened in Georgetown Penang.
    Do you think mass tourism, or social media exposure (for the gram culture), is destroying the authenticity of places around the world? Should tourism be more closely regulated to preserve places like Ipoh?

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