Suffice to say, the secret's out on Venice.
The Italian government has responded to the city's marauding horde of tourists with a plan to begin charging visitors up to €10 upon entering. The entry fee will apply to anyone visiting without paying a hotel tax (read: day-trippers). This measure is a long time coming; somewhere on the order of 55k tourists make a pilgrimage to the Medieval Italian city a day. That translates to a mind-blowing 20 million per year.
At this point, the number of daily visitors outnumbers the city's permanent population (the larger Comune di Venezia is 261K strong, but the city hovers above 50,000). Not to mention the pernicious effects of overconsumption and pollution, which some believe have already doomed the city's charming canals and Renaissance-era refinery to rising sea levels; the situation is so dire that we recently ranked Venice among the 50 places to see before they die.
Raises the question ... if you haven't been and still want to go, how should you play it? We recommend staying in a local hotel (they're cracking down on Airbnbs). If you can only spare a day, make sure to pay the entry fee. Buy fresh fish from local fishermen. Take in some off-beat art at the Palazzo Fortuny or with the Venice Music Project. And contribute your part by participating in sustainable tourism.
Main image via Wikimedia Commons