Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk - flickr user TracyelaineLet’s take a moment to recognize the oldest theme park in California. The Santa Cruz boardwalk has been around since 1907! I still ride the roller coaster every time I am down there. It’s amazing that this tourist attraction is over 100 years old and still going strong.

What are the key elements that keep this place vital after all this time? We can think of several: First, its location right on the water. Second, it appeals to a wide variety of segments and is priced for many different budgets.  Third, it has historical significance; the Santa Cruz boardwalk  is actually an official California landmark.  Fourth, and perhaps the most important reason, it’s fun.

Destinations need to manage the experience they provide over the long term.  While you may not have a 100+ year old attraction, how will your current attractions and experiences be perceived in another 25 to 50 years? Do they have the elements of timelessness?

Photo: Flickr user tracyelaine