What do four Greek islands, a city of islands and Dubrovnik have in common? They're all concerned about being swamped by tourism, and groups from each city have joined to share experiences, tactics and plans.
The meeting in Venice, called by the Gruppo 25 Abrile, came just a day after the city announced that 2017 had brought record visitor numbers—again. The 25 Abrile group has been active in protests around overcrowding in the city. Last year, 9.5 million came to Venice, and the total for the surrounding Veneto region was twice that.
Representatives at the meeting came from similar groups in Corfu, Rhodes, Santorini, Paphos and Dubrovnik. All have the paradox that tourists frequently outnumber locals, that tourism changes the pace and conditions of daily life, and that all are dependent on tourism as their main industry.
The group members compared experiences and possible strategies, and will meet regularly in the future. The next meeting is set for Corfu in October, with the goal of "formalizing the network and the shared values we aim to defend and represent."