You would expect that a city of such Calibre as Venice shouldn’t be dealing with tourism issues. However, the city is experiencing a tourism threat and most Venetians now want more control over the visitor both locals and international.
With so many tourism issues, most locals are wondering whether the city will last long enough for the coming generations to witness. Over time, the Foreign Correspondents have discovered several things that are a threat to Venice but the sheer pressure from the international visitors is the most overwhelming.
Is tourism bad for Venice?
Definitely no, tourism is great for the city but too many tourists are becoming an issue in the city. First and foremost, the city has lost a significant number of its population. The other issue is that the social network that tied together the city has already started to vanish.
Unfortunately, you will find many people in Venice during the day and only a few after working hours. What this means is that most people visit the city for work and will leave after their working hours.
It also shows that very few people are willing to live in Venice. There are many reasons for this but the most impactful is flooding. Most locals opt to live in Mestre on the mainland.
The other reason is that the tourism weight has become so much to an extent it risks damaging the base on which the city was built on. The ships are also posing a great threat. As a matter of fact, they are coming too close to the Canal Grande. This can damage the lagoon.
Unlike what many cities advocate for, the authorities in Venice want to limit the number of people visiting every single year. If this is not advocated, then there can be negative impacts on the city.
I wouldn’t think that tourism is bad for the city. As a matter of fact, it brings currency and all the good things. The problem is how people conduct their tourism in Venice. Most of them visit the city on massive cruise lines.
The ships pose a threat to the environment and also the spending is not as huge. The main reason is the visitors’ usually have a shore excursion and hence tend to spend little on the Venice land.
There are also some instances of mass ‘’cattle’’ tourism which might be a cause of concern. This kind of tourism is detrimental to Venice. This doesn’t mean that Venice is the only part of the world with the same issue. There are many other countries but it happens that Venice is to be emblematic of the issue.
There are almost 60,000 people who visit Venice every single day. This shows that this population is more than her entire population. A very significant number of those people come from cruise ships.
As a matter of fact, the country has about a 49 percent increase in cruise dockings within the last few years (including a recent 2019 accident resulting in another ban of a cruise ship). This is according to the statistics shown by the Venice Passenger Terminal. Venice hosts the most popular cruise destinations in Europe.
According to the research conducted on this issue, it is deduced that the high number of visitors especially those touring through ships are damaging the city whose economy is based around tourism.
Through the information shared here, tourism in Venice is a double-edged sword. Venice is marked as a UNESCO World Heritage center but now tourism is ailing tragically. However, some people point out that it’s not easy to have such huge numbers of people visiting the country every single year and still have full benefits.
The Fragile city
There are several groups that are specifically researching the dangers of Cruise ships in Venice. Some of them including UNESCO claims this type of tourism is greatly damaging the city. In fact, the ships are known to erode the foundations of the buildings which greatly contribute to the pollution. In addition, it is believed this type of tourism also has an impact on the cityscape because it is straining the city’s monument.
It may take longer for you to understand the whole concept but the reality of the matter is that such huge numbers of tourists in that limited space can be a cause of worry. The fact is that Venice is a small space that does not have the capability to host such a large number of visitors.
According to research, the number of tourists is going up every day and every year. This number is gradually made up of more and more people that are coming from the cruise ships. This means that there are a very large number of tourists in Venice in a single day which you cannot expect to be good for the environment and the economy.
Where did the whole issue come from?
The issue of tourism in Venice didn’t start yesterday. This is a problem that has been there for a long time now. However, things have got out of hand in recent years.
Tourism in the city has been increasing in the last century and now more and more tourists are flocking to Venice which can be worrying. This whole problem started to stir a public debate in the 1950s when the Venice population started falling drastically. This means that this was a city that had started to be a home for tourists alone from this time.
However, as the population started to shrink, the ships continued to increase in size and numbers. This means that the city has increasingly continued to accommodate more passengers and foreigners as the number of residents continued to decrease.
The locals are increasingly becoming more and more frustrated and that is the reason why fewer people are choosing Venice as their home. I actually think that the local authorities should do something to limit the ships coming to Venice every single day and at the same time discourage such tourism measures. This will make the city more hospitable to the locals.