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How Europe's Major Destinations are Planning to Curtail Overtourism

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By Jaden Francis - - 5 Mins Read
Crowds of tourists strolling on the cobblestone alley near Grand Canal in Venice.
Tourists in Venice, Italy | Cristi Croitoru / Shutterstock.com

Europe's breathtaking landscapes, historic cities, and charming towns have long been magnets for tourists seeking unforgettable experiences.


However, the surge in visitor numbers has led to overcrowding, environmental degradation, and strains on local infrastructure.


In response, several major destinations across the continent are implementing measures to tackle over-tourism and preserve their cultural and natural heritage.


Venice, Italy

With its enchanting canals and iconic landmarks, Venice has been grappling with over-tourism for years.


The city introduced an entrance fee to manage the influx of visitors and alleviate the strain on its delicate infrastructure.


Additionally, measures such as restricting access to popular sites like the Trevi Fountain and Spanish Steps in Rome aim to balance tourism with preservation efforts.


Amsterdam, Netherlands

Amsterdam's picturesque canals and vibrant culture have made it a must-visit destination.


However, the city's small size and growing tourist numbers have led to concerns about overcrowding and disruption to local life.


Small boats docked on water
Amsterdam, Netherlands | Adrien Olichon


To address this, Amsterdam has banned cruise ships from its main port and launched campaigns to discourage rowdy behavior among visitors.


Nice, France

The French Riviera city of Nice has taken a creative approach to combating overtourism.


Street artist installations, including giant rat traps with ice cream as bait, serve as both a humorous commentary and a reminder of the challenges posed by excessive tourism.


Additionally, the government is implementing plans to regulate tourist flows and support local authorities in managing visitor numbers.


Santiago de Compostela, Spain

Santiago de Compostela, a popular pilgrimage destination, is implementing a tourist tax to discourage excessive visitation and preserve its cultural heritage.


The city aims to strike a balance between welcoming pilgrims and managing the impact of mass tourism on its historic center.


Mallorca, Spain

Mallorca, known for its stunning beaches and vibrant nightlife, has faced backlash from residents over the influx of tourists.


Measures such as banning public nudity and cracking down on disruptive behavior aim to restore harmony between locals and visitors.


Similar initiatives have been introduced in other Spanish cities like Barcelona and Ibiza.



Portugal's beautiful beaches draw millions of visitors yearly, but authorities are cracking down on disruptive behavior to protect the environment and maintain the quality of tourist experiences.


Fines for playing loud music and engaging in prohibited activities aim to promote responsible tourism and preserve Portugal's natural beauty.


Dubrovnik, Croatia

Dubrovnik, famous for its well-preserved medieval walls and stunning architecture, has implemented a range of measures to address overtourism.


A luggage drop-off system will reduce noise pollution from wheeled suitcases, while bans on public urination and drunk behavior aim to maintain the city's pristine image.


Europe's major destinations are proactively tackling over-tourism and ensuring sustainable tourism practices.


By balancing the needs of residents with visitors' expectations, these cities and regions strive to preserve their unique identities and appeal to future generations.


For many tourist-heavy cities, local residents reportedly feel unsafe as an ocean of loud and rowdy guests overruns their once-perfect havens.


According to reports from the World Tourism Organization, the influx of international tourists in Europe will hit the 2 billion mark at the end of this decade.