11. The Galapagos Islands
The Galapagos Islands are one of the most diverse ecosystems in the world, known for wildlife and marine species, and for inspiring Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution. The archipelago’s popularity is hurting animal and plant life, which is why the authorities are imposing a limit for cruise passengers. They can’t stay more than five days, and there will be no more than four landings in 14 days. As much as 95% of the land is designated as protected.
12. Isle of Skye, Scotland
The popular Scottish holiday destination has become too popular and is bursting at the seams. It is not uncommon for hotels to have to turn tourists away in the summer. Many travelers arrive without plans or accommodations and are unable to find a room as everything is full. Calls for a tourist tax have been growing.
13. Machu Picchu
About 3,800 people visit the ancient Inca citadel each day. Limits were imposed in 2017. Tourists to Machu Picchu, which is located almost 8,000 feet above sea level, have to leave within a specific time and cannot go back. In addition, all visitors must come with an official Machu Picchu guide or licensed tourist guide, and groups cannot include more than 16 people.
More than 2.3 million people visited Iceland in 2017, seven times the number of residents. Attempts to clamp down on tourists have been made in the past. A business tax on people renting their homes for more than three months of the year was proposed. Nearly 4,000 apartment listings on Airbnb in Iceland were created in a single month in 2016, 124% more than in 2015. A 2014 report concluded that improvements need to be made in dealing with mass tourism and limiting access to certain places.
The landlocked Himalayan country has chosen to focus on quality over quantity when it comes to tourism. The country doesn’t limit the number of visitors, but has adopted a “high value, low impact” policy, allowing only tourists who respect Bhutan’s culture and values. All visitors must book their holiday through a Bhutanese tour operator or its international partners.