Tourism campaigns, the good ones

The world is packed with wonder and variety, but genuinely original tourism ads are few and far between. Mark Tungate tracks down some of the most innovative campaigns of recent years

So here you are at the cinema. A vague odour of popcorn and confectionery. The lights have dimmed and the huge curtains have swished back. If you’re anything like me, you’ve arrived in plenty of time to catch the trailers and some decent ads on the big screen. At one point, a spot opens with a long panning shot of an emerald landscape. A voiceover rumbles: “In a land where everyone is welcome…”

Of course. The tourist authority ad. They’re all pretty much the same: a cod-poetic narration over a montage of people trekking, kayaking, eating street food and bargaining with friendly locals. Someone always leaps from a rock into the sea. I have never done this, mainly because the presence of one rock strongly implies others, lurking just below the surface.