We all have blind spots. Things that just aren’t on our radar… but probably should be. Sometimes we just need a friend to bring them to our attention.
Here in the U.S., one of our collective blind spots is the importance of the United Nations World Heritage list. Perhaps it’s because we are so aware – and proud – of our excellent, world’s-first National Park System, and our many heritage and cultural attractions, that the World Heritage list doesn’t get our attention.
It’s not because the US doesn’t have sites that have been recognized as World Heritage. There are currently 22 locations, from Jefferson’s Monticello to Hawaii’s Volcano National Park.
Whatever the reason – its a blindspot.
As the US works to increase its international visitors it is important to recognize that for folks from many of America’s visitor source markets – World Heritage is important.
In some countries, there is broad community engagement in getting sites listed – and great pride when sites achieve the recognition that their heritage is important to all of humanity. And those same people are interested in seeing the World Heritage locations in other places.
America’s World Heritage listed sites represent a great way to promote what is unique and important in the United States to people from around the world.
Take them out of the blind spot and put them in the spotlight.