The state of Coahuila has hopes for the designation this year of two new Pueblos Mágicos, or “magical towns.”
The addition of General Cepeda and Múzquiz would bring the state’s total to eight, said José Antonio Gutiérrez Jardón, secretary of economic development and tourism.
General Cepeda came close to being named last year, he said.
Tourism in the three that were named last year — Candela, Arteaga and Guerrero — helped boost Coahuila’s visitor numbers to nearly 3 million in 2016. The other designated towns are Parras de la Fuente, Viesca and Cuatrociénegas.
The next undertaking for the state will be to ensure the maintenance of infrastructure in the Pueblos Mágicos and that they adhere to the standards set by Sectur, the federal tourism secretariat, Gutiérrez said.
There are currently 111 magical towns and the federal government has indicated it wishes to name eight more.
One of the benefits of the designation is the injection of federal funds for infrastructure, but that investment has suffered due to cutbacks.
Coahuila’s hotels and motels association says the state’s Pueblos Mágicos are among the top destinations, but there was no money for them last year.
Association president Héctor Horacio Dávila Rodríguez said much remains to be done in the way of improvements.
Meanwhile, the association anticipates 1.8 million visitors arriving for the summer vacation period, bringing economic spinoffs worth 881 million pesos (US $50 million). The numbers would represent an increase of 2.5-3% over last year.
Dávila Rodríguez said summer tourist numbers have been rising steadily since 2013.