Tasmanian Times

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche


Only governments can stem the tide of tourism sweeping the globe

The State Government is hot-to-trot encouraging a mass influx of cruise ships and tourists, but, as The Guardian says …

Tourism, like all globalised trends, can be a force for good, but can also wreak immense localised damage

In Barcelona this summer, I was shown a protest sign written in English that said: “Why call it tourism season if we can’t kill them?” Anger over unhampered tourism is getting ugly, even in Barcelona, where the mayor, Ada Colau, is one of the few politicians dedicated to reining in the industry.

Residents told me they have had it with skyrocketing rents, thousands of tourists from cruise ships swamping the city’s historic centre and partygoers keeping families up into the night. And they are increasingly sceptical about the economic benefits for the average citizen.

Every time I find myself smirking at another photograph of drunken tourists crowding a gracious town square, I think of Venice. The annual tourist traffic of more than 20 million visitors to La Serenissima has impoverished, rather than enriched, most Venetians. They have been pushed out, the population cut in half to fewer than 60,000 people. The survivors continue to protest and vote against giant cruise ships and mindless tourism.

But the powers that be have done little. Even the United Nations has warned that the genius of Venice, its culture, art and way of life are being drowned by tourism …

Read here

EARLIER on Tasmanian Times …

Guardian: Cruise Ships: Heading to Venice? Don’t forget your pollution mask

*Lindsay Tuffin has been a journo since 1969, mainly in Tassie apart from a few years elsewhere in Oz, and in Pomland where he had a brief stint as a youth worker and where for five years he edited ‘Buzz’ – a magazine dealing with church and social issues and which was beaten in audit circulation in the Specialist Interest category by Aero Modeller magazine …!

ABC: Tasmania’s battle between ecotourism and forestry playing out in town of Derby

Author Credits: [show_post_categories parent="no" parentcategory="writers" show = "category" hyperlink="yes"]


  1. Christopher Eastman-Nagle

    August 10, 2017 at 10:41 pm

    It seems to me that Tasmania has a long way to go before it suffers the Venice syndrome. And let us be honest, aside from farming, Tassie doesn’t exactly have the luxury of a huge range of alternative industries to Tourism, other than mining and forestry of course. It does have the highest unemployment rate in the country, so beggars can’t really be choosers

    However, the point is well made. I had a teacher who used to be a policeman in then Ceylon (Sri Lanka).

    For a time he had a pet tiger that he had hand reared since it was a cub. One day, when this creature had become large enough to be dangerous, it decided to lick the bare soles of his human benefactor’s feet, that were dangling over the edge of his rear veranda deck chair.

    It wouldn’t stop and when the man tried to withdraw his feet, the tiger dug in its claws. His feet started to bleed from the tiger’s rough tongue, and he had to call a servant to get his gun and shoot it if it wouldn’t desist. It didn’t desist…

    Indulgence capitalism is like that. It takes over and then it corrodes and consumes everything in its path. There are of course ways in which a state government could control entry numbers, by for instance limiting the amount of tourist accommodation available, but as we have seen with forestry, large industries tend to get their way…..and can only be deterred by enormous protracted struggle.

    There is no easy answer to this, other than to try and ride the tiger without being eaten by it. And yes, the Chinese are coming….millions of them….

  2. TGC

    August 10, 2017 at 12:51 pm

    #8 A mire of despond – it’s unnatural.

  3. Chris Harries

    August 8, 2017 at 10:18 pm

    Ah Chris (#8), but the cable car will be Tasmania’s only electrified public transport. Does that count for anything? 🙂

  4. Chris Sharples

    August 8, 2017 at 9:43 pm

    Certainly the current influx of cashed up tourists will eventually cease arriving in Tasmania and will be replaced by an even bigger influx of desperate climate refugees(which is what most of the refugees currently trying to escape sub-Saharan Africa and the Middle East already are, as I think many people are starting to understand).

    By our failure to take climate change seriously we are now committed to a future of crisis and challenge in which tourism will be about as safe and popular as it was during World War II (unless visiting interesting places to meet interesting people and killing them counts?).

    Now, it may be that all the new hotels and other tourism complexes currently being built in Tasmania by drooling entrepreneurs in denial about what climate change actually means will in future be of some use for housing those refugees. But what will we do with the cable car if it is built on Mt Wellington? Perhaps it’s sheer uselessness in a post-tourist Tasmania would make it the perfect memorial to the consequences to human greed and stupidity?

  5. TGC

    August 7, 2017 at 1:22 pm

    #2″Looking at this from the other side of the mirror, nearly every person I know – including nearly all environmental folk – are regularly skipping off to far off lands …”Of course they are- ‘have ticket will travel’- in many cases in order to study the effects of “Climate change and oil depletion,” or some such environmental concern.
    Of concern to this contributor is that- despite the ‘millions’ touring Tassie each year our necessary infrastructures – health, education, transport etc- continue to be under pressure from financial restraints. It seems to me these ‘millions’ make little ‘net’ contribution to the Tasmanian economy after we have forked our millions of dollars making them ‘comfortable’ and ‘entertaining’ them.

  6. philll Parsons

    August 6, 2017 at 8:41 pm

    #2 has it covered. I flew but stayed away instead of returning for each of 3 events. Tried to travel by train and foot to limit my footprint.

    The crowds in Venice could be avoided but where they were thick you met unhappy Venetians trying to walk from point to point.

    Managing tourists and tourism development so the place does not loose it’s attractiveness is an essential. No tower, no skytram over the organ pipes.

  7. PHilip Lowe

    August 6, 2017 at 7:51 pm

    Ho hum.Make hay you guys and gals.Gather Ye rose buds and all that.Aquire that which moth and rust will corrupt.Eat,drink and be merry for tomorrow WILL come,and who knows what it will bring?

  8. Jack Lumber

    August 6, 2017 at 7:18 pm

    re 3 Once again the master of hyperbole speaks

  9. Ted Mead

    August 6, 2017 at 3:35 pm

    There is no question that shiploads of tourists have their positive and negative impacts both socially and economically.

    I never been on a cruise ship, and probably won’t unless it’s the only way I can get somewhere.

    In my opinion the impacts of tourists coming have here been positive apart from the crowds in some places like Port Arthur, of which I wouldn’t go there under any circumstances anyway!

    I have always claimed shiploads of cashed up tourists coming to Tasmania far-outweighs the shiploads of subsidized wood products leaving our island.

    And it seems we are stuck with both into the foreseeable future!

  10. Chris Harries

    August 6, 2017 at 1:35 pm

    Personally, I don’t think even government can stem the tide of tourism that’s happening. World energy stresses may do so in time.

    Looking at this from the other side of the mirror, nearly every person I know – including nearly all environmental folk – are regularly skipping off to far off lands, including those destinations that are identified above. The advantage of cheap flights makes tourism activity irresistible to nearly everyone. It’s mainly blue collar folk who don’t travel so much.

    Climate change and oil depletion will ultimately impact savagely on both recreation tourism and freight and will force us to enjoy ourselves and produce our goods more locally. But for the time being it’s as if there is no restraint. Perversely, people who are environmentally aware tend to fly more than ever, perhaps knowing that this energy binge is likely to be regulated downwards in their lifetime.

    We can probably count on lively tourism for another ten years and that’s well beyond the time frame of most government planning, so it’s not a government concern. Those who think long term ought not to pivot any economy too much around cheap travel.

    In relation to Tasmania, back in the early 1960s nearly all people visiting the Apple Isle came from Mainland Australia and 80 percent of those came from Melbourne. This was prior to the massive increase in globe trotting that has taken place since then. It’s probable that we may revert to a visitor matrix along those lines eventually but I wouldn’t even count on that. More likely we will have a large influx of people evacuating places that have become too intolerable to live in and this will require us to be very inventive with regard to sharing natural and other resources in the best possible way.

  11. Second Opinion

    August 6, 2017 at 1:19 pm

    Or indeed our local environs; both the built; and the natural environment; being modified in line with tourism dictates.
    Our heritage is being purchased from under our feet.
    I look for the pointy shoes and the congenital smirk.

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