These Destinations Will Be Overrun With Tourists in 2023

Last Updated on March 1, 2023 by Jess

Some people haven’t traveled in years. Many Americans long for vacations, are tired of video conferencing, and see the same four walls day after day.

But 2023 will be a year of travel for many who have put off visiting their favorite destination or a trip to a famous landmark.

But before you make your travel plans for 2023, take a look at some destinations that are suffering from over-tourism. Some places have even introduced new restrictions to curb the crowds, while others continue to see millions of visitors a year.

Some cities are taking advantage of tourists by jacking up prices while offering substandard service. So don’t make your reservations just yet. Let’s dive in!

Will people travel more in 2023?

After the pandemic, the travel and hospitality industry experienced a flood of vacationers.

People were tired of being cooped up in their homes. They were ready to take a break from long-distance learning, remote work, and mask-wearing.

This year, more and more people will also be ready to travel. Whether it’s the beaches of Florida, the mountains of Colorado or the deserts of Southern California, most popular destinations will see an increase in visitors.

Tips for avoiding crowded destinations

If you want to find a good vacation spot, one of the most important tips to avoid crowds is to choose a less crowded place. Instead of going to Daytona Beach, you might want to choose a place further north in Ormond Beach, where you’ll find lower prices and fewer people.

Instead of visiting the Grand Canyon, visit southern Arizona and walk among the cacti in Saguaro National Park. These lesser-known places are still worth the trip.

If you’re dying to visit a crowded attraction, all is not lost. Make reservations well in advance to secure accommodations.

Then, when you arrive, avoid the crowds by getting up early and taking walks or visiting museums before lunch. There is also more free parking earlier in the day.

However, always check when visiting a popular area. Tickets must be reserved for some national parks, permits are required for some hiking trails, and advance reservations are required for some places such as art galleries, museums, and attractions. These systems help limit the flow of tourists.

7 destinations that will be overrun with tourists in 2023

In 2023, there will be several destinations around the world that will be overrun by tourists. If you can choose a similar place, you will be able to enjoy your vacation instead of fighting crowds and standing in long lines.

1. Hawaii

One of the most expensive vacations is a visit to Hawaii. Compared to other tropical islands, you often get overpriced and low-quality food there.

But the beauty of the beaches attracts tourists year after year. Hawaii is stunning, but some of the most breathtaking scenery is far from the tourist attractions and crowded destinations.

2. las vegas

Every year people come to Las Vegas to have a good time, and 2023 will be no different. But if you don’t want to spend all your time gambling, you’ll have to fight crowds, stand in lines and pay too much for sometimes mediocre entertainment.

Vegas certainly has some amazing shows to offer, and the natural scenery is a real feast for the eyes. But there are many other, less crowded places to enjoy similar fun and beauty.

Remember: When you’re done partying, you must visit these national parks near Las Vegas!

3. New York City

Another overpriced and crowded tourist destination is New York City. From food to cab service to hotel accommodations, you’ll pay a ton of money to visit Times Square, see a Broadway show, or climb to the top of the Empire State Building.

In other major cities, you can store at the same stores without having to deal with traffic and crowds. New York City is certainly iconic and offers tourists memorable experiences, but it might be a city you want to skip in 2023.

4th U.S. National Parks


In recent years, U.S. national parks have seen a dramatic increase in visitor numbers. This has resulted in significant traffic congestion, overcrowded parking lots, and disgruntled guests.

In addition, these crowds have damaged ecosystems, and many have wantonly damaged sacred and protected sites. If you plan to visit a popular national park, take advantage of the off-season and follow Leave No Trace principles to protect these protected areas.

5. Cancun

Three international destinations are on the list of places you might want to avoid in 2023. The first is Cancun, Mexico. This hotspot is so overrun with tourists that it’s impossible to experience authentic Mexican life.

Everything, from the food to the accommodations to the excursions, revolves around travelers. Like Las Vegas, there are drunken tourists and scammers. If you want to spend your honeymoon at an all-inclusive resort, Cancun may be the right choice for you.

However, if you’re looking for a nice beach to relax on or a place to enjoy real Mexican cuisine or support Mexican artisans, look elsewhere.

6. Barcelona

In the summer it is especially crowded in Barcelona, Italy. A stay in the city and a visit to a restaurant are expensive, and the street vendors always want to make money.

In addition, the city is very cluttered, which greatly detracts from the vacation experience. Barcelona is a city of less than two million inhabitants, but about 32 million tourists a year, which makes it difficult to find your way around the city and enjoy its beauty.

7. amsterdam

Finally, Amsterdam in the Netherlands is on the list for the same reasons as Barcelona. The city has less than a million inhabitants, but receives almost 20 million tourists a year.

This has become so problematic that the government has begun banning new tourist stores and restricting Airbnb rentals. As with the other places, the same applies here: If you come in the off-season, you will enjoy your time much better.

However, if you must come in the summer, you should choose a similar but different place.

Places tourists should avoid due to environmental concerns

We’ve also listed some places in the United States that you should avoid in 2023, not because of overcrowding, but because of environmental concerns. These three iconic destinations are popular tourist attractions, but have also issued warnings to visitors.

Lake Tahoe

In 2021 and 2022, Lake Tahoe is experiencing a huge influx of people moving into the area. These vacation homes now have permanent residents. Because of this, traffic, trails and beaches are much busier.

The biggest environmental problem is the increasing pollution. The dust and exhaust emissions from all the extra vehicles and construction work have changed the beautiful blue color of the lake. In response, the city wants to find ways to limit the number of cars on the road.

Lake Mead

Lake Mead has been in the headlines in recent years because of drought. This area of Arizona and Nevada has enacted water restrictions to prevent further destruction of the lake.

Officials expect the water level to drop to less than 1,050 feet above sea level, which is a Stage 2 water shortage. If it drops below 895 feet, Hoover Dam’s ability to generate hydroelectric power will be affected, impacting people in California, Arizona, and Nevada.

Maui

You might think that an island would have abundant access to water. But that’s not the case in Hawaii. Maui County has imposed mandatory water restrictions on residents for non-essential water use.

However, since these restrictions did not apply to tourist areas with golf courses and swimming pools, this created a major conflict between residents and tourists.

The cost of living has also increased due to high rental prices, leading to an increase in homelessness. Maui residents have even asked tourists to stop coming to the island.

While you certainly have reasons to avoid these crowded and popular destinations in 2023, you can still enjoy your vacation in these iconic cities.

As mentioned earlier, if you can plan your trip in the off-season, you will encounter fewer crowds and traffic. Accommodations, food, and entrance tickets won’t be as expensive either.

Be sure to be considerate of the residents and the environment wherever you go. Tourism may make cities and countries a lot of money, but it’s not worth harming the locals or the ecosystem if visitors take control.

Further restrictions and changes are possible if these places continue to experience high traffic and systemic problems.

Please note: Is the Sedona Vortex a tourist trap? Let’s find out!

Consider alternatives if you’re traveling in 2023

If you’re planning your vacation this year, consider other, lesser-known destinations. Visit New Orleans instead of Las Vegas. Visit Aruba instead of Hawaii. Visit Valencia instead of Barcelona.

Allow some of these places to recover from over-tourism, and in a few years, reconsider going to Yosemite National Park or Amsterdam.

Have you seen the harmful effects of overtourism in other places you’ve visited recently?

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