The Acropolis, Athens’ most famous landmark, has begun restricting visitors to protect its ruins. This effort aims to prevent hordes of tourists from causing damage to the site. The restrictions were implemented on Monday.
A new booking website has been introduced at the Acropolis to manage tourist numbers, implement hourly time slots, and protect the ancient archaeological site, which dates back to the fifth century B.C. This site is globally renowned as a historical landmark. Greek culture minister Lina Mendoni expressed the importance of tourism while also emphasizing the need to prevent overtourism from harming the monument.
The newly launched system limits Acropolis visits to 20,000 tourists per day, and it will also be implemented at other Greek sites in April. Access will be granted to 3,000 visitors between 8 a.m. and 9 a.m., followed by 2,000 visitors every subsequent hour. The Acropolis, a rocky hill in Athens housing various ruins, structures, and the Parthenon temple, currently welcomes up to 23,000 visitors daily, which is considered an enormous number, according to Greek culture minister Lina Mendoni.
Tourism in Europe has experienced a significant increase since the pandemic, particularly during the summer season, despite high travel expenses. The Acropolis had to close at times during the summer due to extreme heat and wildfires in Greece. Similar to the Acropolis, other European landmarks have also limited visitor numbers due to the overwhelming influx of tourists. For instance, the Louvre in Paris now restricts daily admissions to 30,000 visitors, and Venice is considering implementing an entry fee to manage the tourist influx and protect its fragile canal city.