Published on : Tuesday, November 7, 2017
The city of Venice, which has been of long appeal to the tourists for its cobbled alleyways, gourmet restaurants and rich cultural history, is recently crumbing under the weight of tourism, and locals are fed up with it.
With about 28 million visitors each year, which is more than the entire Australian population, the city has seen rising tensions growing amongst the locals who are taking aim at tourists – those arriving by cruise ships in particular. From a local’s window in the port-side Dorsoduro area hangs a sign that says ‘no grandi navi’, or ‘no big ships’, with a picture of a cruise ship crossed out in red.
Venice is also known as La Serenissima, translating to ‘the most serene’, which is certainly not the scene now.
What was once the place for the art lovers and the intellectuals are now witnessing a diminished quality of life and high rental prices.
While many do not support the tourism, movements such as Venezia Autentica aims to ensure the protection of Venice, while providing a meaningful experience of Venice to travellers. It offers tours and activities to travellers that won’t harm the city or annoy the locals.
Co-founders of the website said that Venetians are very few, Venice lovers are many. If the mainstream starts seeing Venice as a living city, the general approach to Venice could change.
Similar anti-tourism rhetoric was echoed in the Spanish capital Barcelona earlier this year as tourism reached it’s peak in the summer period.