It began as stories, which grew into legends, which faded into myths, which transformed into ides. Very specific ideas. Ideas of the kind expressed by the phrase “let’s go there and find out”.
As so often is the case with these things, this idea was sufficient to set people in motion. Towards the aforementioned “there”.
At first, the inhabitants of “there” were enthused about the notion that the stories, legends and myths had some nugget of truth to them. A while later, when the local scholars had identified them as the travel logs of a notoriously enthusiastic drug smuggler from the 17th century, enthusiasm faded.
But people kept coming. And they did not update their ideas, or take into account the numerous available options of finding out the truth without going there.
As more and more people kept coming, the locals felt it necessary to discuss the situation. At length. At the conclusion of the talks, it was decided that the myths were actually true, and that these are who we are now. For better, worse and immense tourism profits.
All in service of the authentic experience.