Cultural Tourism DC, “a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, develops, delivers and celebrates real experiences for Washington area residents and visitors.”
When you think about it, that definition (besides the nonprofit part) could and should be part of the mission statement for any tourism organization. Now more than ever, people crave these real, authentic experiences that fall under the category of cultural tourism so they truly gather a sense of place when visiting a new area.
To help understand how Cultural Tourism DC promotes itself, we have analyzed their website and wanted to highlight some of its best features so your destination can be inspired and perhaps implement some of these tactics.
1. Passport DC
Passport programs are a great way to encourage visitors to visit a variety of sights and guide people to some of the best, richest, and/or most historic aspects of an area. We’ve created passport programs for the the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians and another for Biltmore Village–both great successes in helping promote the areas, increase foot and web traffic, and give people a more distinctive experience. Passport DC also highlights specific aspects of the city, framed as “a month-long journey around the world highlighting DC’s thriving international diplomatic community and its lively and varied culture.”
These self-guided walking trails encourage people to read signage, view historic photos, and stop along the trail at various restaurants and shops along the way–all while gaining a deeper understanding of the area and creating a more memorable experience.
3. PorchFest and other annual events
Annual events centered around cultural tourism are a great way to get people coming back year after year and can be a continuous part of a destination’s promotional efforts year-round. For Cultural Tourism DC, one of their main events is PorchFest, an event where “area residents and visitors celebrate local talent by turning the front stoops and porches of several neighborhood homes and storefronts of local businesses into performance spaces where local musicians play for the community for free.” Tap into the local talent that abounds in your destination, and your destination could create a similar experience.
It’s important to honor the past, and Cultural Tourism DC does so with this trail that consists of over 200 sites, 100 which are marked with plaques. A free booklet is available and provides lots of information about the people and places that have helped shape DC.
We’re here to help you execute these and other tactics to help highlight your area’s cultural tourism gems. We have experience increasing web traffic, foot traffic, social engagement and more, so please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like to learn more.