Letter to the Editor: Overtourism



To the Editor:

The Oxford Dictionary made “overtourism” one of its words of the year in 2018. It is defined as “an excessive number of visitors heading to famous locations, damaging the environment and having a detrimental effect on residents’s lives.”

Machu Picchu, Peru; Amsterdam, The Netherlands; Rome and Venice, Italy; Paris, France; Santorini, Greece; Bruges, Belgium; Edinburgh, Scotland; Bali, Indonesia. What do all of these places, and more, have in common?

They have all started to feel the effects of overtourism and are starting to take action to counter it.

Do the effects of overtourism start to sound familiar to residents of Mount Desert Island, particularly Bar Harbor? I believe that they should.

The sheer number of tourists is becoming overwhelming. I am sure that many retail businesses are horrified to hear about the idea of limiting the number of tourists, but I, as a resident, feel that we are at that point.

Thank you.

Scott Hughes

Bar Harbor

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