It has been revealed that Europe's most overcrowded tourist country hosts three tourists for every local. One of its towns has even erected a fence to prevent visitors from overrunning the place. Holidays are meant to be a time to unwind and relax, whether you prefer a city break or a week on the beach. But when your destination is too busy, it can ruin the enjoyment of the place. Europe is a popular holiday destination due to its proximity, affordability, beautiful weather, and landscapes. However, it's also a popular spot for people from all over the world.
According to the latest data, Austria has the highest number of tourists on the continent, making it the most overcrowded. The study revealed 3.6 tourists for every local in the country. This country has a permanent population of around 8.9 million but attracts 32 million tourists yearly. Most of these visitors flock to the capital city of Vienna to visit its famous landmarks such as Schonbrunn Palace, Vienna Opera House, Belvedere Palace, Museum of Natural History, St Stephen's Cathedral, and St Peter's Catholic Church. Tourists can book a ride on the Viennese Giant Ferris Wheel for a panoramic view of the city. They can also stroll around the Ringstrasse to admire the iconic buildings of the Habsburg Empire.
Vienna's Museums Quartier is a must-visit spot for art lovers, offering two main museums - the Leopold Museum, with an impressive collection of works by famous artists, and the MUMOK, which showcases contemporary art, including Andy Warhol. In addition to these museums, the area also features several trendy cafes, restaurants, and a sculpture park. Visitors can even enjoy mini-golf in the vicinity.
Fortunately, Vienna's size allows it to handle large numbers of tourists, but this is not the case for every town in Austria. Some places struggle to cope with overcrowding, leading to drastic measures such as erecting fences to discourage visitors.
The town of Hallstatt, located on Lake Hallstatt, has become a popular destination. The charming town with rustic buildings and a towering cathedral sits on a pristine lake with snow-capped mountains in the background. However, the locals are unhappy with the tourist influx. Earlier this year, villagers erected a fence to block views to discourage tourists from taking photos. There have also been protests against traffic jams and congestion caused by visitors.
While there are various other areas in Austria that tourists can visit, it's advisable to stick to larger cities that can accommodate the influx of visitors. Graz is one of the hidden gems, with a historic old town designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The town features narrow streets, pretty walkways, and small boutiques.