The northern Italian city of Venice, overwhelmed by tourists, has now introduced new restrictions targeting larger tourist groups and the use of loudspeakers.
The city, famous for its gondolas and canals, sees millions of tourists each year, but the residents have had enough.
Venice has now limited the size of tourist groups to a maximum of 25 people at a time. This restriction will apply on 29 selected days during the high season, which runs from April to mid-July. This is reported by Norwegian 'Dagbladet'.
Additionally, the use of loudspeakers that can "create confusion and disturbances" is now prohibited. These measures aim to reduce pressure on the city's historic center, where many residents feel like strangers in their own home.
Last year, Venice experienced a net population decrease of 50,000 people.
The United Nations had previously warned of "irreparable damage" due to the climate crisis and mass tourism in Venice. The city has long been under pressure from tourists, with more bed spaces for tourists than permanent residents. In 2023, about 3.2 million guests stayed in Venice, which has around 250,000 inhabitants.
Starting after the new year, Venice will also implement a "tourist tax" to help limit the number of visitors. This tax requires travelers to pay five euros as an entry fee if they are not staying overnight in the city. This new tourist tax is part of Venice's efforts to manage its popularity as a tourist destination while preserving its status as an "extraordinary architectural masterpiece," as described by UNESCO.
Venice has been on UNESCO's World Heritage List since 1987.