Skip to Content

Go Home: The Cities Rejecting Tourists

Go Home: The Cities Rejecting Tourists

As travel becomes increasingly accessible, the impacts of tourism on popular destinations have led to a growing backlash. From Venice to Barcelona and beyond, these hotspots are grappling with the negative consequences of over-tourism, including environmental degradation, disruption of local life, and cultural dilution. This piece explores the measures various cities are taking to mitigate these effects, from restricting visitor numbers to implementing fees, aiming to balance tourism with sustainability and quality of life for residents.

A Growing Problem

Image Credit: Pexels / DSD

We are fortunate to live in a time when holidays are common and travel easy. However, this makes some desirable destinations resent the constant influx of outsiders.

Not Just Benefits

Image Credit: Shutterstock / David Bokuchava

While many consider tourism a positive thing for an area—investment, an economic boost, jobs, and improved infrastructure are all benefits—there are also downsides.

The Negatives of Tourism

Image Credit: Pexels / Lenita Tropical

Tourism can negatively impact any area – urban or rural. Cities can suffer from extra pollution, traffic, priced-out locals, littering, and antisocial behavior.

War with Nature

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Conservationist

Rural destinations like islands, mountains, and jungles can suffer from other issues besides littering and pollution. Tourism can cause soil erosion and the loss of natural habitats, threatening endangered species.


Image Credit: Shutterstock / Jacob Lund

Problems caused by tourism can lead to hostility and resentment from locals. This can lead to communities protesting and developing movements to reduce or even stop tourism in their local area.


Image Credit: Shutterstock / maudanros

The countries most affected by “over-tourism” are Spain and Italy. Malaga, Portofino, and the Canary Islands have too many visitors. These popular destinations are often cheap to reach for Europeans and offer weather and beaches not found in places like the UK. 

Cities Pushing Back

Image Credit: Shutterstock / TTstudio

Venice and Barcelona are two notoriously popular cities, and they are fighting back against the volume of tourists. Venice banned cruise ships in 2021, while loudspeakers and tour groups over 25 people will be banned from 1 June 2024.

Financial Deterrents

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Efired

Venice isn’t trying to prevent everyone from visiting but is looking to encourage more responsible and sustainable tourism. One measure is a fee for day visitors. Up to €10 per day will be charged for anyone not staying overnight in the city.

Unlicensed Rentals

Image Credit: Shutterstock / aniel Krason

Barcelona has many unlicensed Airbnbs, which attract extra tourists and raise rent for locals. In 2016, Barcelona fined the website €600,000 for advertising unlicensed properties. The city has inspectors who crack down on the problem.

The Cost of Tourism

Image Credit: Shutterstock / NATNN

While tourists can bring money to an area through restaurants, taxis, and entrance fees, they can also bring additional costs that locals shoulder, such as increased road tax due to damage by coaches. 

Water Shortage

Image Credit: Shutterstock / New Africa

Tenerife recently declared a water emergency. According to, some tourist areas use six times more water than residential areas, straining water supplies essential for farming and local consumption.

Warning Signs

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Hampton Lamoureux

Some locals have taken action against tourists. Malaga has a sticker campaign and fake signs to deter tourists from the area. Misleading posters in English warn tourists of dangerous jellyfish and falling rocks, with small print in the local language explaining that the real problem is mass tourism.

Closer to Home

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Fernando Espinosa

Europe isn’t the only place with this problem – Hawaii is also experiencing issues. Tourists in the area are killing the coral, pushing up home and land prices, and blocking commuter routes to get their sunset photos.


Image Credit: Shutterstock / Gorloff-KV

Hawaii and many other popular destinations worldwide have a new problem – sunscreen. Sunscreen washed into the water contaminates marine life and sediment. Scientists are researching the long-term impact of this.

No Entry

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Sergii Rudiuk

Kyoto, Japan, closed certain roads to tourists after the city became a “theme park,” according to One area of Kyoto – Gion – known for its Geishas, will impose fines of around $65 for tourists walking where they shouldn’t.

Going Dutch

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Dennis van de Water

Amsterdam welcomes hordes of tourists every year, but not all are welcome. The city launched a campaign to discourage certain visitors – rowdy and disruptive ones. The campaign features videos and was first aimed at British men aged 18 to 35. 

A Better Way?

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Iryna Kalamurza

While it can be great to choose a well-known destination so you know what you’re getting, it might be time to avoid these hotspots in favor of something a little different…

Travel Smart

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Scott McManus

Sustainable tourism isn’t new but hasn’t yet reached its full potential. For those looking to positively impact their destination, places including Australia, Romania, and Bolivia offer the chance to give back.

Low Impact

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Mariasokphoto

The ultimate “do no harm” holiday might be a stay-cation. You can save on travel and hotel costs, avoid culture and language issues, and enjoy what’s right on your doorstep.

Nature at Home

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Francisco Blanco

One way to avoid “anti-tourism” is to consider your at-home options. National Parks across the US accept volunteers – that’s one way to see nature, get out of the city, and earn great karma.

More From The Green Voyage

Top 10 Trending Travel Destinations 2024

6 Essential Banking Apps for International Travel – Managing Your Finances on the Go

Traveling With Kids – 10 Tips to Create Memorable Family Holidays

The post Go Home: The Cities Rejecting Tourists first appeared on The Green Voyage.

Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock / asiandelight.

Related posts:

Tourism Cares Takes Flight - Expanding the Meaningful Travel Program for a Sustainable Future
Professor Dituri Spends 100 Days Underwater - Did He Reverse Aging?
A Guide to the 2024 Total Solar Eclipse in the US
New York’s $2.4 Billion Plan: Transforming Urban Travel Amid Growing Migrant Influence
Travel Insurance Has Become Something Many Feel is a Necessary Protection Rather Than Extra Expense
Almost $500,000 for Michelin Star Meals in the Stratosphere - Space Travel Company to Offer Unique E...
The Revolting Everest Human Waste Problem
Facial Recognition Takes Flight - Examining Security and Privacy at Alabama Airports
A New Home for Hip Hop in NYC
Washington, D.C.’s Cherry Blossoms - Anticipated Peak Bloom in 2024
"National Geographic Bucket List Family Travel" - A Guide to Globetrotting with Kids
April 8th Solar Eclipse - Why the US Is the Prime Spot for This Celestial Spectacle
U.S. Travel Competitiveness Slips - Study Ranks Country Near Last
Airbnb Prioritizes Guest Privacy With Indoor Security Camera Ban
Rare Kayaking Opportunity Emerges in Death Valley's Badwater Basin Following Unprecedented Rainfall
$1.7 Million Ticket - The Record-Breaking Cruise of a Lifetime!
The Rising Interest in NAD+ Therapy for Wellness
The Venice Simplon-Orient-Express - A New Journey from Paris to Portofino
Spring Break Season - Tips for Navigating Miami International Airport's Busiest Season Ever
Kyoto's Gion District - Balancing Tourism with Tradition
Manhattanhenge in NYC
The Cruelty Behind Elephant Rides - Why They Should Be Removed From Your Travel Bucket List
The Constant Build of Sagrada Familia – Is There Finally an End in Sight?
How Taylor Swift Fans Are Fueling the Rise of "Gig-Tripping"
The Cost of Magic - Walt Disney World Ticket Prices Increase for 2025
Safest Places on Earth - Top 12 Countries for Secure Travel in 2024
Beyond the Bucket List - American Express Report Shoes Experiential Travel Boom
AI Arms Race: UK and US Forge Pact to Match EU’s Tech Safeguards
Treasure Coast Gets on Board - Brightline Announces New Station in Stuart
Americans Can No Longer Pay Their Way Into Spain