18 places around the world that are being ruined by tourism



Slide 1 of 19: 
 Tourists can make everyday
 life much harder for locals in cities all over the world. 
 Some tourists vandalize ancient monuments, like one
 traveler who carved his name into the Colosseum in Rome, Italy. 
 Cities often receive an influx of tourists during peak
 season, sometimes far more than their own population. 
 Visit Insider's homepage for more. 
 It's no surprise that locals often get frustrated with tourists
 who visit their home city - sometimes
 tourists behave very poorly while traveling.
 In fact, some cities have encountered so many problems with
 tourists that they've introduced caps on how many people can
 visit the city per day. Locals in other cities have even held
 protests against tourism in their hometowns.
 Keep reading for 18 places that have been ruined by tourism.
Slide 2 of 19: 
 A street in Hanoi, Vietnam, has 
 become popular among tourists in recent years as a place to
 get the perfect selfie for Instagram. The famous street -  dubbed
 "train street" - has a single railroad track with shops and cafes
 that sit dangerously close to the tracks. 
 Built in 1902, the unique neighborhood was once known as the
 "rough part of town," but social media turned the area into a
 tourist attraction. Businesses benefited from tourists who wanted
 to take selfies on the railroad tracks. 
 In October 2019, a train had to make an emergency stop because
 too many tourists were on the tracks and would not move. As a
 result, the Hanoi municipal government is forcing the local
 businesses to close by October 12. 
 "Though the railway cafes attract tourists, they are, in fact,
 violating some regulations," Vice Chairman of the Vietnam
 National Administration of Tourism Ha Van Sieu 
 said.
Slide 3 of 19: 
 The Spanish Steps in Rome were made famous in 1953 after they
 appeared in the Audrey Hepburn rom-com "Roman Holiday." Since
 then, tourists have been flocking to the famous staircase outside
 of Piazza di Spagna.
 As a result, the 135 stone steps are now dirty with red wine
 stains and lumps of chewing gum. In 2016, the city spent $1.68
 million to clean and restore the steps. Now, the Italian
 government has 
 made it illegal to sit on them altogether. Visitors who sit
 on the steps can be fined $280 to $448.
Slide 4 of 19: 
 Fjaðrárgljúfur Canyon in Iceland was featured in a recent
 Justin Bieber music video, and made
 appearances in the most recent seasons of "Game of Thrones." The
 canyon's cameos in pop culture have made it a popular travel
 destination for tourists, but the influx of travelers to the site
 has badly damaged it, prompting a visitors ban.
 The Environment Agency of Iceland reports that about one million
 people have visited the site since Bieber's video was
 released in 2015. They expect even more now that "Game of
 Thrones" has come to an end, despite the ban recently
 implemented by environmentalists, which hasn't discouraged
 visitors from going. According to the AP, visitors have snuck in
 overnight.
12 Highly Unnecessary Things People Waste Money On
Slide 5 of 19: 
 In the center of Amsterdam, you can find the Bloemenmarkt,
 a collection of flower shops that sit atop floating barges. The
 popular attraction is now closing due to over tourism. 
 The market dates back to a time when the shops would receive
 their flower shipments directly on the canal and sell them right
 on the barges, but now most of the shops have been turned into
 cheap souvenir stalls.
 Michael Saarlos, the last of Bloemenmarkt's
 florists, said it's because large tourist groups
 stop to take pictures in front of the shops, blocking locals from
 buying flowers. 
 "I have had enough of all the tourists who ruin my trade,"
 Saarlos told Dutch newspaper De
 Trouw. "If they are here with a group, I can no longer see my
 own customers."
 This year, 18.5 million people are expected to visit
 Amsterdam, and that number is predicted to jump to 23 million by
 2025.
Slide 6 of 19: 
 Komodo Island in Indonesia announced in April that it will
 close the island to tourists for a year because of the
 dwindling Komodo Dragon population. The Indonesian Ministry of
 Environment and Forestry said it caught smugglers trying to sell
 41 Komodo Dragons on the black market for $35,000 each. 
 The island is home to 1,800 Komodo Dragons, which is the largest
 living lizard, weighing in at 200 pounds and up to 10
 feet long. 
 During the year of closure, conservationists will monitor the
 habitat and ensure that the reptiles have enough food and a
 healthy natural environment. The goal is to increase the Komodo
 Dragon population.
Slide 7 of 19: 
 Venice is already known to be sinking, and the masses of
 tourists that visit the city every year certainly aren't helping.
 Locals have complained that tourism, including cruise ships, is
 responsible for 
 increased pollution in the city, and the UNESCO World
 Heritage Committee is concerned about the impact it has on
 Venice's many historical sites.
 Venice has implemented strict rules regarding tourism: littering,
 engaging in horseplay, not wearing a shirt in public, leaving
 love locks, and writing on or damaging trees or buildings are 
 all fineable offenses in the city. According to CNN, the city
 is even 
 limiting
 the number of new hotel rooms.
Slide 8 of 19: 
 In part due to the popularity of HBO's "Game of Thrones,"
 Dubrovnik, Croatia, has seen a significant increase in tourism in
 recent years. The coastal city that is frequently seen on the
 show experienced a 
 10% rise in tourism in 2015 due to "Game of Thrones,"
 according to Dubrovnik's mayor. 
 The city hasn't been able to handle to recent influx of tourists,
 however. In August 2017, Dubrovnik's mayor announced plans to 
 reduce the maximum number of tourists allowed in the city per
 day from 8,000 to 4,000 over the next two years.
Slide 9 of 19: 
 Reykjavik,
 Iceland, is a popular vacation destination, especially given
 recent airfare deals. However, the entire country has been
 overwhelmed with tourists in recent years. 
 In 2015, 1.26 million people visited Iceland, compared to the
 country's population that year of approximately 330,000. In
 2016, 
 the number of American tourists alone will be greater than
 the number of locals.
 A local politician recently complained about the number of
 tourists, 
 comparing the island country to Disneyland. While tourism has
 given the economy a much-needed boost post-recession, it's bad
 news for local infrastructure (there's
 construction everywhere), and it has pushed local prices
 sky-high.
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Slide 10 of 19: 
 Cozumel, Mexico, is a beautiful island surrounded by the
 Caribbean Sea. It's also the second most popular cruise ship
 destination in the world, according to the
 BBC.
 Coral reefs surround the island, although significant amounts of
 coral have been destroyed by boats and scuba divers. The
 remaining reefs have also been damaged by pollution from heavy
 boat traffic.
Slide 11 of 19: 
 Locals in Barcelona aren't shy about their disdain for tourists.
 Earlier this year, 
 a protest against tourism in the city turned violent when
 protesters attacked a tour bus and hotel. 
 Popular attractions have even changed their rules as a result of
 tourist activity. La Boqueria, a large public market, 
 banned tourist groups of more than 15 people in 2015. Before
 the ban, large groups of vacationers often blocked foot traffic
 while taking photographs, causing disruption for vendors and
 regular customers, according to 
 The Telegraph.
Slide 12 of 19: 
 New York City has been a popular vacation destination for years,
 although the tourism industry is only growing. 
 The New York Times reported earlier this year that the city
 currently has 113,000 hotel rooms, although that number is
 expected to rise to 137,000 by 2019. 
 From the ever-growing hotel market to the influx of 
 trendy, Instagram-worthy foods that tourists wait in line for
 hours to try, some would argue that the tourists have taken over
 in New York City.
Slide 13 of 19: 
 The ancient Inca village of Machu Picchu attracts thousands
 of visitors daily - far more than the 2,500 limit set by Peru and
 UNESCO in 2011. However, this massive influx of tourists is
 putting the site in danger, causing irreparable damage. 
 Plans requiring tourists to hire guides and follow specific
 paths are in the works, and should be implemented by 2019.
Slide 14 of 19: 
 Santorini is a beautiful island off the coast of Greece, although
 it's often packed with tourists during the summer. 
 In fact, due to the seasonal influx of tourists, 
 the island imposed a cap on visitors from cruise ships to
 8,000 per day. A whopping 790,000 people from 636 cruise ships
 visited Santorini in 2015, according to 
 Conde Nast Traveler, while the entire island only has a
 population of just over 15,000.
Forget Amazon; Here’s a Better Stock to Buy
Slide 15 of 19: 
 Rome is a beautiful city full of ancient ruins, but too many
 tourists fail to respect their history.
 The latest example of tourists ruining a Roman monument occurred
 in August 2017, when a tourist from Ecuador was caught carving
 his family's names into the Colosseum. He faced fines up to
 $23,000 for vandalizing the 2,000-year-old Roman amphitheater.
Slide 16 of 19: 
 Prague is another city that is popular among partying tourists
 because of its lively bar scene and cheap beer. 
 Rowdy tourists have gotten so out of control that local officials
 had to step in to enforce a city-wide "night quiet time" at 10:00
 p.m. according to 
 CNN.
Slide 17 of 19: 
 The adorable swimming pigs of Big Major Cay Island in the
 Bahamas have
 been dying in large numbers because tourists
 have been feeding them on the beach, causing them to ingest too
 much sand.
 The fact that rowdy tourists regularly  feed them beer and rum,
 and even try to ride them, doesn't help matters. The pigs'
 owners are now working with the government to implement
 regulations.
Slide 18 of 19: 
 Amsterdam has long been a popular vacation destination for
 party-loving travelers, but chief marketing executive of
 Amsterdam, Frans van der Avert, told 
 Travel Weekly, "A lot of smaller historic cities in Europe
 are getting destroyed by visitors."
 Vacation rental sites, like Airbnb, have had negative
 effects on the city, according to van der Avert, who said that
 vacation rentals have taken over the city's canal
 district.
 In response to a rise in tourism, the city 
 has put restrictions on Airbnb in place so that a rental
 listing cannot have more than four people at a time, and cannot
 rent apartments for more than 60 days a year.
Slide 19 of 19: 
 According to the New York Times, a record number of 3.5
 million visitors last year has led to a food shortage for locals,
 who are also unable to pay for many basic items, which have
 skyrocketed in price as hotels stock up on them.
 The Cuban government has since imposed price caps on necessities
 to keep them affordable for locals.
 Sign up 
 here to get INSIDER's top travel stories straight to your
 inbox every week.

It’s no surprise that locals often get frustrated with tourists
who visit their home city – sometimes
tourists behave very poorly while traveling.

In fact, some cities have encountered so many problems with
tourists that they’ve introduced caps on how many people can
visit the city per day. Locals in other cities have even held
protests against tourism in their hometowns.

Keep reading for 18 places that have been ruined by tourism.

Hanoi’s “train street,” Vietnam

A street in Hanoi, Vietnam, has
become popular among tourists in recent years as a place to
get the perfect selfie for Instagram. The famous street – dubbed
“train street” – has a single railroad track with shops and cafes
that sit dangerously close to the tracks.

Built in 1902, the unique neighborhood was once known as the
“rough part of town,” but social media turned the area into a
tourist attraction. Businesses benefited from tourists who wanted
to take selfies on the railroad tracks.

In October 2019, a train had to make an emergency stop because
too many tourists were on the tracks and would not move. As a
result, the Hanoi municipal government is forcing the local
businesses to close by October 12.

“Though the railway cafes attract tourists, they are, in fact,
violating some regulations,” Vice Chairman of the Vietnam
National Administration of Tourism Ha Van Sieu
said.

Spanish Steps, Rome

The Spanish Steps in Rome were made famous in 1953 after they
appeared in the Audrey Hepburn rom-com “Roman Holiday.” Since
then, tourists have been flocking to the famous staircase outside
of Piazza di Spagna.

As a result, the 135 stone steps are now dirty with red wine
stains and lumps of chewing gum. In 2016, the city spent $1.68
million to clean and restore the steps. Now, the Italian
government has
made it illegal to sit on them altogether. Visitors who sit
on the steps can be fined $280 to $448.

Fjaðrárgljúfur Canyon, Iceland

Fjaðrárgljúfur Canyon in Iceland was featured in a recent
Justin Bieber music video, and made
appearances in the most recent seasons of “Game of Thrones.” The
canyon’s cameos in pop culture have made it a popular travel
destination for tourists, but the influx of travelers to the site
has badly damaged it, prompting a visitors ban.

The Environment Agency of Iceland reports that about one million
people have visited the site since Bieber’s video was
released in 2015. They expect even more now that “Game of
Thrones” has come to an end, despite the ban recently
implemented by environmentalists, which hasn’t discouraged
visitors from going. According to the AP, visitors have snuck in
overnight.

Bloemenmarkt, Amsterdam

In the center of Amsterdam, you can find the Bloemenmarkt,
a collection of flower shops that sit atop floating barges. The
popular attraction is now closing due to over tourism.

The market dates back to a time when the shops would receive
their flower shipments directly on the canal and sell them right
on the barges, but now most of the shops have been turned into
cheap souvenir stalls.

Michael Saarlos, the last of Bloemenmarkt’s
florists, said it’s because large tourist groups
stop to take pictures in front of the shops, blocking locals from
buying flowers.

“I have had enough of all the tourists who ruin my trade,”
Saarlos told Dutch newspaper De
Trouw. “If they are here with a group, I can no longer see my
own customers.”

This year, 18.5 million people are expected to visit
Amsterdam, and that number is predicted to jump to 23 million by
2025.

Komodo Islands, Indonesia

Komodo Island in Indonesia announced in April that it will
close the island to tourists for a year because of the
dwindling Komodo Dragon population. The Indonesian Ministry of
Environment and Forestry said it caught smugglers trying to sell
41 Komodo Dragons on the black market for $35,000 each.

The island is home to 1,800 Komodo Dragons, which is the largest
living lizard, weighing in at 200 pounds and up to 10
feet long.

During the year of closure, conservationists will monitor the
habitat and ensure that the reptiles have enough food and a
healthy natural environment. The goal is to increase the Komodo
Dragon population.

Venice, Italy

Venice is already known to be sinking, and the masses of
tourists that visit the city every year certainly aren’t helping.

Locals have complained that tourism, including cruise ships, is
responsible for
increased pollution in the city, and the UNESCO World
Heritage Committee is concerned about the impact it has on
Venice’s many historical sites.

Venice has implemented strict rules regarding tourism: littering,
engaging in horseplay, not wearing a shirt in public, leaving
love locks, and writing on or damaging trees or buildings are

all fineable offenses in the city. According to CNN, the city
is even
limiting
the number of new hotel rooms.

Dubrovnik, Croatia

In part due to the popularity of HBO’s “Game of Thrones,”
Dubrovnik, Croatia, has seen a significant increase in tourism in
recent years. The coastal city that is frequently seen on the
show experienced a
10% rise in tourism in 2015 due to “Game of Thrones,”
according to Dubrovnik’s mayor.

The city hasn’t been able to handle to recent influx of tourists,
however. In August 2017, Dubrovnik’s mayor announced plans to

reduce the maximum number of tourists allowed in the city per
day from 8,000 to 4,000 over the next two years.

Reykjavik, Iceland

Reykjavik,
Iceland, is a popular vacation destination, especially given
recent airfare deals. However, the entire country has been
overwhelmed with tourists in recent years.

In 2015, 1.26 million people visited Iceland, compared to the
country’s population that year of approximately 330,000. In
2016,
the number of American tourists alone will be greater than
the number of locals.

A local politician recently complained about the number of
tourists,
comparing the island country to Disneyland. While tourism has
given the economy a much-needed boost post-recession, it’s bad
news for local infrastructure (there’s
construction everywhere), and it has pushed local prices
sky-high.

Cozumel, Mexico

Cozumel, Mexico, is a beautiful island surrounded by the
Caribbean Sea. It’s also the second most popular cruise ship
destination in the world, according to the
BBC.

Coral reefs surround the island, although significant amounts of
coral have been destroyed by boats and scuba divers. The
remaining reefs have also been damaged by pollution from heavy
boat traffic.

Barcelona, Spain

Locals in Barcelona aren’t shy about their disdain for tourists.
Earlier this year,
a protest against tourism in the city turned violent when
protesters attacked a tour bus and hotel.

Popular attractions have even changed their rules as a result of
tourist activity. La Boqueria, a large public market,
banned tourist groups of more than 15 people in 2015. Before
the ban, large groups of vacationers often blocked foot traffic
while taking photographs, causing disruption for vendors and
regular customers, according to
The Telegraph.

New York, New York

New York City has been a popular vacation destination for years,
although the tourism industry is only growing.

The New York Times reported earlier this year that the city
currently has 113,000 hotel rooms, although that number is
expected to rise to 137,000 by 2019.

From the ever-growing hotel market to the influx of
trendy, Instagram-worthy foods that tourists wait in line for
hours to try, some would argue that the tourists have taken over
in New York City.

Machu Picchu, Cusco, Peru

The ancient Inca village of Machu Picchu attracts thousands
of visitors daily – far more than the 2,500 limit set by Peru and
UNESCO in 2011. However, this massive influx of tourists is
putting the site in danger, causing irreparable damage.

Plans requiring tourists to hire guides and follow specific
paths are in the works, and should be implemented by 2019.

Santorini, Greece

Santorini is a beautiful island off the coast of Greece, although
it’s often packed with tourists during the summer.

In fact, due to the seasonal influx of tourists,
the island imposed a cap on visitors from cruise ships to
8,000 per day. A whopping 790,000 people from 636 cruise ships
visited Santorini in 2015, according to
Conde Nast Traveler, while the entire island only has a
population of just over 15,000.

Rome, Italy

Rome is a beautiful city full of ancient ruins, but too many
tourists fail to respect their history.

The latest example of tourists ruining a Roman monument occurred
in August 2017, when a tourist from Ecuador was caught carving
his family’s names into the Colosseum. He faced fines up to
$23,000 for vandalizing the 2,000-year-old Roman amphitheater.

Prague, Czech Republic

Prague is another city that is popular among partying tourists
because of its lively bar scene and cheap beer.

Rowdy tourists have gotten so out of control that local officials
had to step in to enforce a city-wide “night quiet time” at 10:00
p.m. according to
CNN.

Big Major Cay Island, Bahamas

The adorable swimming pigs of Big Major Cay Island in the
Bahamas have
been dying in large numbers because tourists
have been feeding them on the beach, causing them to ingest too
much sand.

The fact that rowdy tourists regularly feed them beer and rum,
and even try to ride them, doesn’t help matters. The pigs’
owners are now working with the government to implement
regulations.

Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Amsterdam has long been a popular vacation destination for
party-loving travelers, but chief marketing executive of
Amsterdam, Frans van der Avert, told
Travel Weekly, “A lot of smaller historic cities in Europe
are getting destroyed by visitors.”

Vacation rental sites, like Airbnb, have had negative
effects on the city, according to van der Avert, who said that
vacation rentals have taken over the city’s canal
district.

In response to a rise in tourism, the city
has put restrictions on Airbnb in place so that a rental
listing cannot have more than four people at a time, and cannot
rent apartments for more than 60 days a year.

Cuba

According to the New York Times, a record number of 3.5
million visitors last year has led to a food shortage for locals,
who are also unable to pay for many basic items, which have
skyrocketed in price as hotels stock up on them.

The Cuban government has since imposed price caps on necessities
to keep them affordable for locals.

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here to get INSIDER’s top travel stories straight to your
inbox every week.

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