The U.S. travel and tourism industry generates approximately $2.1 trillion per year. So, it is no surprise that there is actually a “Tourism Week” celebrated. In South Carolina, Gullah/Geechee culture is often highlighted at the I-95 North Visitors Center in Hardeeville, SC. However, in most cases, Gullah/Geechee culture is not highlighted, it is hijacked!
The massive amount of tourists that come to the Gullah/Geechee Nation annually believe that by driving through and taking photos and then staying in a hotel or camp ground over night, they have supported the Gullah/Geechee people. They even end up often duped into spending funds at “historic sites” and plantations that have Gullah/Geechee listed on their websites and shots of sweetgrass baskets on their brochures to only find out that there are no Gullah/Geechee people that own that site. There may be one Gullah/Geechee person or a few that work there, but beyond their salaries, there is no economic support going to the citizens of the Gullah/Geechee Nation.
For 2017, Travel and Tourism Week which will be held May 7-13 is themed “Faces of Travel.” During this week, the Gullah/Geechee Nation is calling on tourists to post pictures of themselves at Gullah/Geechee OWNED locations with the items that they have purchased and with the owners or Gullah/Geechees that are working or creating items at the location so that we can see the “faces of travel” on their journey. They can tweet them @GullahGeechee or tag them to the Gullah/Geechee Nation’s Facebook Fan Page at
In the event that you are saving your travel days to come down for another time of year, like once your children are out of school for the summer, we will make finding actual Gullah/Geechee business owners very easy for you by listing some places and events where you can stop and and support Gullah/Geechee crafts artists, authors, restaurants, and entrepreneurs: