How popular tourist destinations are dealing with bad behavior



Slide 1 of 12: Travelers love Hawaii. Peru’s Machu Picchu is a heartthrob too. Venice, Italy? Yes, per favore. But our passion for these wonderful places has a downside: too many people visiting, too much wear and tear on the destination. Even worse, some tourists have little or no respect for the places they visit, resulting in damage, offense or even desecration of sacred spaces. Several popular destinations are working to limit tourism damage and also are cracking down on bad behavior.
Slide 2 of 12: The growth in tourism increases demands on infrastructure and creates a greater need for law enforcement to handle the masses and the people who misbehave. Amsterdam, a city of 1 million residents that expects 20 million visitors this year, has seen hooligans turn it into, as NPR described it, a “naughty Disneyland” where drunken visitors vomit and urinate on residents’ properties. Tourists are being fined for urinating in canals, public drunkenness, disturbing the peace in public places and/or dropping litter -- up to $155 per infraction.
Slide 3 of 12: A German couple used their camp stove to make themselves a cup of coffee on Venice’s historic Rialto Bridge, the BBC recently reported. These backpackers, just two of more than 30 million people who visit the city each year, were fined more than $1,000 and ordered to leave the city. Fines also are being levied for feeding pigeons, jumping in canals, wearing swimsuits in the city and attaching a “love lock,” a padlock that sweethearts put on bridges to signify their enduring love.
Slide 4 of 12: Hanauma Bay, a popular snorkeling destination on Oahu, was suffering because the crush of tourists disturbed coral and marine animals. Today, it limits tourism by charging an admission fee and shutting down access once its 300 parking spaces are filled. Likewise, Maui’s popular Haleakala, where tourists can view spectacular sunrises, now requires reservations.
Slide 5 of 12: Machu Picchu has a ticketing system that means you can see the wildly popular Incan citadel in the morning or the afternoon, and once you have left the premises, you may not re-enter. Also, visitors must be accompanied by a guide. Misbehavior has consequences, as one tourist, who photographed himself naked, found. He was banned for life from the site. Others who violate the rules are turned over to the Peruvian authorities.
Slide 6 of 12: If you’re visiting the fragile Galápagos Islands, Ecuador’s tourism star, you need to follow the rules closely. That includes staying at least 6 feet from wildlife, sticking to the paths and, more recently, refraining from bringing single-use plastics and polyethylene food containers. Strict rules are necessary because people have done horrible things, including a German tourist who was convicted in 2013 of trying to smuggle out four endangered iguanas. He was sentenced to four years in jail.
Slide 7 of 12: A recent disturbing trend of tourists posing to appear as though they are picking the noses of Easter Island's famed moai has created anger on the island. The crush of tourism also has spurred restrictions, and now travelers are limited in how long they can stay on the small island and must stick to trails to view the sacred sites of the Rapa Nui statues. Bad behavior is sadly not a new invention, CNN reports. In 2008, a Finnish man who climbed one of the moai and chipped off a piece of ear was arrested, fined $17,000 and ordered to leave the island and never return.
Slide 8 of 12: Beginning Oct. 26, visitors may no longer climb Australia’s famed and sacred Uluru. The treks have made a mess of an area considered culturally significant. “The climb has also damaged the rock itself, with a huge white scar from tourists walking the same path being visible from a distance,” News.com.au reported.
Slide 9 of 12: Maya Bay, the Thailand beach popularized by the 2000 film “The Beach,” is another victim of its popularity with tourists. It has been closed and will stay closed until at least June 2021 after serious damage was done to the marine ecosystem, CNN reported.
Slide 10 of 12: It's against the law to wear a bikini, swimming trunks or to go bare-chested in areas that are not near the beach-front area in the beautiful Spanish city of Barcelona. Violators can be fined.
Slide 11 of 12: Germany has strict laws on hate speech and symbols linked to Hitler and the Nazis. Two Chinese tourists were arrested in Berlin in 2017 for making Hitler salutes outside the German parliament, the Reichstag. They were fined $560 each.
Slide 12 of 12: The famous walled city of Dubrovnik this year began limiting the number of cruise ships that can dock each day to two. The new rules are intended to reduce the impact of overtourism on the historic city, made famous as a filming location in "Game of Thrones." The Old City's status as a UNESCO World Heritage site is under threat as the overwhelming number of tourists have wreaked havoc on areas.

How popular tourist destinations are dealing with bad behavior

Amsterdam

Venice, Italy

Hawaii

Machu Picchu

Galapagos Islands

Easter Island

Australia

Thailand

Barcelona

Germany

Dubrovnik, Croatia

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