Many European destinations put a limit on mass tourism

Published on : Thursday, August 17, 2017

Many European destinationsFed up with mass tourism, locals in Barcelona are protesting against making their city uninhabitable. It is the latest European hotspot to eye tourism with hostility.

From the romantic canals of Venice to the walled mediaeval town of Dubrovnik via the wilderness of Scotland’s Isle of Skye, tourism is becoming a nightmare for many locals, despite the jobs it offers and the income it generates.

In the trendy seaside Barceloneta district of Barcelona, residents have complained about anti-social behavior like drunkenness and indecent behavioral display in public areas, as well as a leap in rental prices that has forced many locals out. Similar demonstrations have flared in other parts of Spain, the world’s third tourism destination.

This summer in Palma de Majorca in the popular Balearic Islands, activists burst into the port, setting off flares of red smoke and throwing confetti over people eating at a restaurant. A bus full of tourists was attacked in Barcelona, painting over its windscreen and giving passengers a fright.

Officials too have started addressing the problem of overcrowding. The governments in these countries have started limiting the number of tourists to address the protests. Many destinations are now sagging under the weight of tourists.

Dubrovnik in Croatia is a favorite with cruise ships — a popularity that soared even further when it was used as a backdrop in the smash TV series “Game of Thrones.” The walled old town is a delight of 17th- and 18th-century architecture. Locals now say that it is almost impossible to move in the congestion.

Similar measures have also been taken on the other side of the Adriatic Sea in Venice, which counts 265,000 inhabitants for around 24 million visitors annually.


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