France urges Brits to stay away from top tourist destinations

By Lisa James
Home » France urges Brits to stay away from top tourist destinations

France is planning a campaign telling Brits and other foreign visitors to stay away from its most popular tourist destinations.

Officials want to use social media influencers to encourage tourists to avoid the best-known regions and visitor attractions in a bid to tackle over-tourism.

Instead the campaign will promote some of its lesser-known destinations.

France ­Tourism Alliance, which came up with the recommendations, also wants to introduce daily quotas at sites, controlling numbers with scheduled ticketing and higher prices.

Authorities are also considering rolling out a ‘de-marketing’ campaign, with images of overcrowded sites to make them seem less appealing.

Tourism Minister Olivia Grégoire said 80% of tourists focus on just 20% of the country.

She told Le Figaro: “If we want to free up sites that are overly frequented, we need to bring other destinations to the fore and other tourist itineraries.”

A campaign in English and other ­languages will promote ‘tourism for four ­seasons better spread over the country,’ which will also propose 40 tours, the Telegraph reports.

Last month, tourism officials at Mont-Saint-Michel in Normandy (pictured) posted images of sightseers stuck in huge queues after 60,000 people flocked to the 10th-century abbey and village over the Ascension Day holiday weekend.

Thomas Velter, head of the local tourist authority, told France Info: “It wouldn’t be desirable to put turnstiles at the foot of Mont-Saint-Michel but we will very soon have to regulate the flow.”

The Telegraph adds the tiny island of Bréhat in Brittany which has a population of 377, has introduced a limit on day-trippers during the summer, while Calanques National Park, near Marseille is to introduce a booking system for the Sugiton coves, cutting tourist numbers from 2,500 per day to just 400.

In March, Amsterdam launched a hard-hitting campaign telling British men looking for cheap or boozy trips to stay away from the city.

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