Venice,Italy is one of the neatest tourist towns. How it all got there is a quite a story. They were basically running from the invading hordes. Two miles out to sea was too much of a bother for the Huns so they left them alone. As we covered before, the lagoon is rising and the buildings are sinking.
On September 21 of last year, protests were held in Venice. It was a result of 12 cruise ships sailing down the Giudecca Canal, the Main waterway past St Mark’s Square. A typical day will only have 2. That’s over 600 per year. Most citizens of Venice hate the cruise ships, despite the millions of Euros they bring in. Restaurants and trinket shops love them.
When a cruise ship passes by, enroute to the dock, it’s like Godzilla coming into town. Standing on the upper deck and looking down 13 – 18 floors is weird. Almost like you are peeking it their homes. The wake caused by these monster ships send wave ripples to the edge of the buildings and up the canals. Imagine 12 ships and the damage they can do to the brick supports down next to the water.
The protestors took every kind of floating device – even inner tubes and treading water to make their point. Cruise-ship tourism in Venice has made the city the cruise capital of Europe. One protestor said: “These mega cruise ships are a visible expression of a system of political and commercial wrongdoing that has been corrupting life, damaging the economy, the environment and, ultimately, the people of this region.”
The fines the protestors were given were high, but the results were worth it. Cruise ship traffic in front of St Mark’s Square is down 20% and large vessels will be permanently banned starting November 2014.
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