Progreso, Yucatán — For all its attractions, this port city has untapped potential to be a tourist destination, says the president of the Tourist Business Council of Yucatán, Jorge Escalante Bolio.
Escalante urged city officials to invest more to make Progreso an inviting place to visitors, including the thousands of cruise ship passengers who stay on board or bypass the city’s beaches, restaurants and amenities.
In a story in Milenio Novedades, the tourism official vented his frustration: As a resort city, Progreso is problematic for its unreliable electricity, drinking water and garbage collection, he said. He also criticized the proliferation of street vendors and excessive alcohol sales, even to minors.
The port city should differentiate itself, but vendors at the beach are selling the same Chinese trinkets that cruise passengers see at other ports, Escalante charged. Massage services on the beach are no different than massages offered on the boat, he said.
If Progreso raises its standards, more cruise passengers would opt to stay and spend money rather than hop an excursion bus, said Escalante, who urged a city program to paint facades, and to support artisans who offer unique, high-quality merchandise.