Overcrowding at Europe's tourist hot spots prompts backlash

Overcrowding at some of southern Europe’s biggest holiday destinations is fuelling an angry backlash against tourism this summer, with residents of cities from Barcelona to Venice staging protests.

BARCELONA (REUTERS) - Major holiday hubs in southern Europe are being overrun with tourists, and residents say they have had enough.

Overcrowding in some of the top hotspots this summer is fuelling an angry backlash from locals.

Across Italy, to Croatia and Spain, a sharp rise in tourism is making life unbearable for those who call it home.

Foreign visitors to Florence and Venice have surged almost 32 per cent since 2009. Venetians have staged several demonstrations, calling for better management of tourist arrivals to the floating city.

The backlash has prompted many authorities to act.

Rome is considering limiting visitor numbers to parts of the eternal city, like the Trevi fountain.

The popular Croatian port of Dubrovnik sees more than 5,000 cruise ship passengers flock to the city every day. It plans to limit vessel numbers to the city.

Barcelona is set to introduce a new tourism tax. Residents who live in these holiday hubs are calling for further protective action. They say they don't want the cities to lose their identities - the very identity that attracts tourists to the area in the first place.