More and more tourists are flooding Copenhagen, partly thanks to a record numbers of cruise ships docking at the Danish capital. The trend is only expected to continue.
And while the influx of visitors is a boon for the economy there is also a dark side to the mounting tourism: pollution, noise and congestion, to mention a few of the dilemmas.
Copenhagen saw 8.8 million overnight stays last year (Danmarks Statistik breaks it down as 5.59 million foreigners and 2.74 million Danes), and with that figure expected to double by 2030, local organisations have had enough and have levelled criticism at the city municipality and tourism organisation Wonderful Copenhagen.
Not so wonderful
Anne-Mette Hjalager, a professor at the Center for Tourism, Innovation and Culture at the University of Southern Denmark, contends that more regulation in certain areas, such as the number of cruise ships that are permitted to dock in the Danish capital, could be the way forward.
”It’s nice with tourists, but it can also be too much if the balance is skewed. The municipality has the tools and the responsibility to solve these tourism conflicts. You can locally plan your way out of many problems, but the municipality has failed to do so,” Hjalager told DR Nyheder.
Franciska Rosenkilde, the deputy mayor for culture and leisure, has admitted that there are local problems in regards to tourism and pledged to investigate solutions in collaboration with local groups and organisations.
Good for business and jobs
Despite the consternation in certain areas, some 38 percent of Copenhageners have expressed that their local areas have the capacity to welcome even more tourists. And there might be a good reason for that.
Figures from Wonderful Copenhagen reveal that 87 percent of tourists visiting Copenhagen go to the city centre and that tourism brings the capital region over 51 billion kroner and keeps 60,000 people employed every year.
Copenhagen isn’t alone in the Danish tourism debacle. Last week it emerged that the Wadden Sea nature area in Jutland was under pressure from thoughtless visitors – its home municipality of Varde is the second most popular destination in Denmark, with both foreigners and Danes – and earlier this year it was revealed that the UNESCO-listed Jelling Monuments were also under pressure from tourists.