Spain’s anti-tourist movement is reaching boiling point

08 August 2017

SPAIN’S idyllic beaches, bold architecture, vibrant night-life and colourful culture draws millions of tourists every year. But behind the paradise a hostile battle is bubbling to the surface.

And we are at the centre of it.

Many Spaniards are growing frustrated by armies of tourists taking over town centres, disrupting the lives of locals and putting a strain on resources.

In 2016, some 75.3 million people visited the European country. That grossly outnumbers the country’s actual residents, of which there are about 46 million.

In fact, Spain has broken its own tourist number records each year for the past four years and currently holds the title of the world’s third most popular tourist destination, according to the UN’s World Tourism Organisation.

And while tourism represents some 11 per cent of Spain’s 1.2 trillion euro ($1.8 trillion) gross domestic product, an anti-tourism movement has been simmering among locals for quite some time. But it appears the anger may now be close to boiling point, with frustration turning into actual violence.

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Photo: Interfax

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