Mass Tourism: Should Valencia Follow Barcelona’s Example?

Mass tourism is on the increase once more. For that reason Barcelona is imposing some stringent measures, and Valencia, as usual, is likely to follow suit.

This summer, the streets of Valencia are packed with tourists from all over the world, attempting to make up for the two years missed due to the Covid outbreak. Mass tourism is resurging, but so are the challenges that it brings. Faced with the same issues, Barcelona has enacted tough rules to limit mass tourism. These measures will probably be implemented in near future in Valencia, faced with the same problem.

The new measures introduced  in Barcelona intend to tackle large tour groups and reduce the effects of the mass tourism.

The new rules are trying to address the problem of noise and introduce a novel one-way system for tours in different centres across the city, in an effort to reduce the pressure on the residents.

The new measures include reducing the disruption caused by large tour groups in the city, which will have to start using headsets and earpieces instead of megaphones or speaking at a normal volume. In addition, tours will have to move one-way only, and only 24 streets and squares can be visited.

During these tours, tour guides will be required to choose stops with more spacious environments in order not to become an issue for other pedestrians.

The tour groups will be allowed to have 15 people instead of 30 when visiting the very narrow streets of the Ciutat Vella,  the city’s oldest neighbourhood. Moreover, some historical sights will only allow groups of three to eight visitors.

Visitors are also encouraged by the tour companies to book their tours in advance instead of buying tickets in the city streets, which can cause chaos considering the high number of visitors.

However, Barcelona isn’t the only city to introduce restrictive measures to deal with the mass tourism. Playa de Palma, one of the Mallorca’s most popular spots, has launched a dress code for bars and restaurants, as visitors will not be permitted to enter if they are wearing swimsuits, football kits, umbrella hats or gold chains.

Spanish authorities have also imposed a “six drinks a day” rule for all-inclusive resorts in a bid to curb the ‘drunken tourism’. Holidaymakers in all-inclusive resorts will have to pay, starting this year, for their additional drinks.

Valencia has consistently followed many of the restrictions introduced initially by Barcelona, therefore it is expected that these measures will be implemented in our city, which is also struggling with the problem of mass tourism. Perhaps as soon as the following tourist season.

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