POLL: Are there travel destinations you don’t feel welcome? | World | News


Tourism is key in the economy of many countries. Nevertheless, some destinations beloved by visitors are fighting back against uncontrolled mass tourism.

Residents and local authorities in areas where there is a regular surge of visitors during the high tourism season have been increasingly vocal about residents being pushed out of entire neighbourhoods to make space for tourist accommodations, services not being able to keep up with increased demand and rising pollution – among other issues.

Some local governments are making decisions to stave off the effects of mass tourism while still welcoming tourists.

Among the most popular measures is the tourist tax, which asks visitors to pay a usually small fee in addition to the normal costs of their stay.

Local authorities around the world have also decided to limit the daily number of visitors able to access particularly popular areas. 

The latest city likely to make a similar move is Seville, in Spain, where visitors may soon have to pay a fee to explore the Plaza de España.

Seville Mayor José Luis Sanz wrote on X: “We are planning to close the Plaza de España and charge tourists to finance its conservation and ensure its safety.”

The message was accompanied by a video showing tiles missing from the space, damaged facades and street vendors stationed in alcoves and on the stairs. 

Other overcrowded cities have gone to the extent of quite literally asking tourists, or at least a certain type of visitors, to stay away.

Among them is Amsterdam, in the Netherlands, which ran an ad campaign in 2023 bluntly telling people planning a rowdy escapade to go elsewhere.

Lanzarote, extremely popular among Britons, has been trying to target wealthier visitors less keen on consuming large quantities of cheap alcohol.

Authorities on the Indonesian island of Bali also appear to be keen on attracting less unruly tourists and more people interested in the natural beauty of the area. 

Barcelona, another popular Spanish city, started taking steps in 2022 to limit the number of visitors by cracking down on the size of tour groups, among other measures. Anti-tourism graffiti expressing how locals feel when they feel their home is overrun by holidaymakers have also been dotting the city for years. 

Another art city locals feel strongly about mass tourism is Venice, in Italy, as is Santorini, in Greece, where the local population of around 10,000 see around two million people flocking to their beaches every summer. 

Have you ever visited one of these destinations? Have you ever gone to a holiday hotspot and felt not welcome?

Let us know in the poll above and the comments.

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