Why nów is the time to go to Venice (or not?)
The locals are running away and cruise ships are being kept away. Venice seems to be sinking, literally or figuratively; can that be true?
Together on a gondola through narrow canals, or wandering through a one-of-a-kind maze of bridge and idyllic alleyways where every cobblestone seems to be placed at random. It’s the fairytale-like image that everybody will have on their minds when thinking of Venice. But if you want to experience this yourself, you better hurry!
Venezia no più
Venice is built on no less than 117 little islands, all connected by 400 bridges and 160 canals. From the Canal Grande, which runs through the city like an aorta, you can admire Venice’s many characteristic palaces and eye-catchers such as the Ponte Rialto and the Ponte della Costituzione. But the gorgeous Italian city is now suffering from its own popularity. With only 50.000 local inhabitants left, the city has shrunk significantly. Locals leave Venice in great numbers, which reduces a typical Venetian street to nothing but tourists. How could this have happened?
Too many tourists, not enough expenses
Every year, the city receives a whopping 30 million visitors, a lot of them day tourists and cruise ship passengers. Especially the latter group are a blow to Venice’s economy: because of all the all-inclusive, on-board service, these tourists are unlikely to spend anything while roaming through the city. The gigantic ships themselves, that stop short of cruising straight into the city, cause a lot of ruptures in the water level – which, in turn, damages the foundations of the city… And making it more likely for Venice to turn into another Atlantis soon.
Forbidden for cruise ships… and for tourists?
So many different people crammed together on such a small and instable piece of land is anything but beneficial to the environment – both nature, the city’s culture, and its people. Now, the nightmare that is this mass tourism has finally gotten through to the authorities, and new measures have been put in place. Large cruise ships are no longer welcome in Venice starting November 2017. Could an altogether cap on tourism be a possibility in the near future too..?
What do you think – one last ride in a gondola as long as it’s possible? Or would you rather not contribute to the downfall of the paradise that Venice used to be?