Over-Tourism: 10 Popular Tourist Destinations Overrun by Travellers

Travelers are flocking to these 10 hotspots, but their popularity comes at a price. Dive into the bustling scenes of Phuket and Pattaya in Thailand, or explore the historical charm of Venice, Italy. Discover the challenges and solutions these destinations are employing to manage the crowds and sustain their allure.
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Travelling the world has never been more accessible, and as a result, many countries are experiencing an influx of tourists. While this can provide economic benefits, it can also lead to crowded destinations and over-tourism.

Here is a list of the 10 most-visited tourist destinations overrun by travellers, based on the ratio of tourists to residents:

1. Phuket, Thailand

Tourists per resident: 118.5

Phuket leads the pack with its breathtaking natural beauty, well-established tourist infrastructure, and excellent value for money. While it’s often criticized for overcrowding, most visitors use it as a gateway to explore Thailand’s stunning beaches and islands.

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2. Pattaya, Thailand

Tourists per resident: 98.7

This vibrant coastal city along the Gulf of Thailand comes in second place, with 98.7 tourists per resident. It’s renowned for its lively nightlife and water sports, making it a magnet for visitors from around the world.

3. Krabi, Thailand

Tourists per resident: 72.2

Nature’s Paradise, Krabi, the third Thai city on our list, offers picturesque landscapes, including limestone cliffs and crystal-clear waters, attracting adventure seekers and nature enthusiasts alike.

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4. Muğla, Turkey

Tourists per resident: 40

Muğla, a province in southwestern Turkey, welcomes around 40 tourists per resident. Known for its scenic beauty and historical sites, it includes popular destinations like Bodrum, Marmaris, and Fethiye, offering a blend of ancient history and Mediterranean charm.

5. Hurghada, Egypt

Tourists per resident: 28.6

Situated along Egypt’s Red Sea coast, Hurghada ranks fifth with 28.6 tourists per resident. It’s a renowned resort town celebrated for its world-class diving and snorkelling opportunities, drawing underwater enthusiasts and beach lovers.

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6. Macau, SAR of China

Tourists per resident: 27

Often referred to as the “Las Vegas of Asia,” Macau is a special administrative region of China. With approximately 27 tourists per resident, it’s famous for its bustling casinos, vibrant nightlife, and Portuguese colonial architecture, making it a must-visit for thrill-seekers.

7. Heraklion, Greece

Tourists per resident: 22

Heraklion, the capital of Crete, Greece, is steeped in history and culture. While it hosts 22 tourists for every resident, it primarily serves as a starting point for onward journeys to other areas within Crete.

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8. Venice, Italy

Tourists per resident: 21

Venice faces over-tourism issues due to its immense popularity. Despite efforts to control crowds, Venice remains in the top 10 with 21 tourists for every resident. It’s canals and historic charm continue to captivate travellers worldwide.

9. Rhodes, Greece

Tourists per resident: 20

Rhodes is renowned for its combination of ancient ruins and idyllic beach resorts. While Rhodes town may be bustling, the island offers quieter and secluded areas for travellers seeking tranquillity.

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10. Miami, United States

Tourists per resident: 10

A versatile destination, Miami, known for its vibrant nightlife, cultural diversity, and beautiful beaches, rounds out the top 10 with 8.1 million international arrivals annually. Catering to various interests, from art enthusiasts to sun-seekers, Miami remains a popular choice for both domestic and international travellers.

S. No.CityCountryTourists per Resident
1PhuketThailand118.5
2PattayaThailand98.7
3KrabiThailand72.2
4MuğlaTurkey40
5HurghadaEgypt28.6
6MacauSAR of China27
7HeraklionGreece22
8VeniceItaly21
9RhodesGreece20
10MiamiUnited States10

Must Read: New Tourist Taxes Coming to These Countries in 2023 and 2024

How to Avoid Over-Tourism

If you are planning to visit a popular tourist destination, there are a few things you can do to avoid over-tourism:

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  • Travel during the off-season.
  • Visit less popular destinations.
  • Stay in local guesthouses or homestays instead of large hotels.
  • Eat at local restaurants instead of international chains.
  • Support sustainable tourism businesses.

By following these tips, you can help to reduce the negative impact of tourism on the destinations you visit.

As you plan your future travels, keep in mind the impact of over-tourism on these remarkable destinations, and consider exploring less-visited gems to help ensure the long-term sustainability of our global treasures.


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Manish Khandelwal
Manish Khandelwal

Manish Khandelwal, a travel-tech enthusiast with over a decade of experience in the travel industry. Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Travelobiz.com, he's passionate about writing.

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