Envisioning Eden uses international tourism as an analytical and ethnographic lens to disentangle the intricate ways in which processes of globalization and localization intersect, overlap, and clash. Destinations of travel worldwide are adapting themselves to the homogenizing service standards of tourism while at the same time trying to maintain, or even increase, their own distinctiveness. Central to these deeply intertwined processes are tourism imaginaries, understood as representational systems that mediate reality and form identities, and their (re)production by local tour guides, key agents in the selling and telling of natural and cultural heritage. Based on over two years of fieldwork in Yogyakarta, Indonesia, and Arusha, Tanzania, this book offers an in-depth examination of local-to-global dynamics in the context of contemporary tourism. The author examines each destination in all its particularity, illustrating how tour guide narratives and practices are informed by widely circulating imaginaries of the past and personal fantasies of the future. A comparative and discourse-centred analysis reveals how local guides in Yogyakarta and Arusha assure the continued reproduction and localization of tourism fantasies, but also how they use the privileged contact with foreigners to foment their own imaginations of ‘paradise on earth’. The book’s focus on the human mechanics of globalization, on cosmopolitan mobility, and on the role of the imaginary in giving people’s lives meaning, illustrates some creative ways in which anthropologies of tourism and travel can contribute to ongoing theoretical and methodological debates about the local-global nexus. This insightful work will be essential to readers interested in culture contact, globalization, cosmopolitan mobility, and tourism.