As a travel company, we spend a lot of time highlighting places we think you should visit but very little time suggesting where you shouldn’t. Fodor’s, on the other hand, has brought back its yearly “No List” as a gentle reminder to reconsider our impact as we travel — and it’s worth consulting before your next trip.
While acknowledging the good tourism can do for local economies, Fodor’s points out that it can also do a lot of harm, whether its damage to location-specific natural resources, carbon emissions fueling global warming, or population displacement. At the simplest level, overcrowding sucks for tourists but it’s often a whole lot worse for the people who live there.
Some notable “No List” destinations for 2023:
Lake Tahoe: Increased traffic is polluting the typically crystal clear waters
Venice and other Italian hotspots: Overcrowding is damaging historical cities and making life hard on locals
Cornwall, England: The housing crisis is being fueled by temporary accommodation displacing locals, a common trend throughout the world
Thailand: Over-tourism is damaging its national parks so badly that they’re now required to close for at least one month a year
Hawaii: Regions of the Aloha State find themselves receiving fines for non-essential water use, while the tourist sector enjoys unlimited use in hotels, pools, and on golf courses
I also found myself in Cornwall this year, the day before and after summer vacation ended and was stunned by the volume of tourists in the region, in stark comparison to when the district emptied the next day. It’s a tough balance to strike as a tourist, but one we should all strive to find.