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over-tourismOvertourism lesson provides you with the opportunity to consider how governments are trying to balance the well-being of their people and the economy as more tourist visit their countries. This lesson is centred around the theme Sharing the Planet from the IB Language B curriculum which considers the challenges and opportunities faced by individuals and communities in the modern world. In this lesson, we will practice our listening and reading skills by learning about the effects of over-tourism in different places in our world.

Exercise 1Exercise 2Exercise 3Word ListExtension
Tourism has grown exponentially over the past few decades, but what effect is it having on some of the world’s most beautiful cities? This video breaks down four major ways cities are being impacted by mass tourism. Watch the video and name these four major impacts.

Click here to reveal the answer
1. Overcrowding
2. Pollution
3. Bad Behaviour
4. Rising Prices

You hear a radio programme about why locals are tired of overtourism in Europe and looking at ways to reduce visitors.

A. Identify true or false statements: According to Lisa, which of the following statements are true or false?


1. Lisa was visiting Dubrovnik as she is a big fan of Game of Thrones.

2. Despite not knowing the local language, Lisa knew why the old woman was angry.

3. Many of the locals in Dubrovnik prefer to stay away during the busy tourist season.

4. Europe is experiencing a decline in tourism.

5. In some areas in Barcelona, rental cost for apartments has increased due to tourists staying there.

6. There are groups in Spain trying to discourage tourists from visiting their areas by displaying notices in a variety of languages.

7. Locals held a street protest in tourist spots in Venice.

B. Gap-fill. Complete the text.

Eric Zelo wrote a book called the History of (8) . According to Eric, tourism was promoted in Europe due to (9) reasons. Eric explains that Tourism was a way to build the economy as well as stopping (10) spreading across Europe. In addition, he believes that it was a way to encourage (11) . He stresses that tourism should not be treated like a (12) .

C. Multiple Choice Choose the correct statement. 

13. What did the Spanish Prime Minister do?


Click here to view transcript and answers

On a hot September day in Croatia, I search for a guide who could share with me the history of Dubrovnik, the UNESCO heritage site with its magnificent old walled town from the 16th century. See the red keep the house of the undying, the Purple Wedding setting. The guides called out as I strolled among them checking prices and departure times. It meant nothing to me, but all of those sites they were offering were from Game of Thrones, the fantasy TV series that hasn’t been on my watch list. Eventually, I joined it to have that takes us through the rabbit Warren, past an old Croatian woman dressed in black sitting on her steps, with her hands on her knees, muttering angrily in her native tongue. I didn’t need the language to know she was not happy. The streets were packed cruise ships disgorged their passengers in the thousands and the sun beat down on tired heads. I heard her spit out the word Game of Thrones before she spat on the footpath as we walked by.

That was last year after the busy holiday month of August. How much she be feeling now. She may well have left town, so many of the locals do to escape the rubbish, the noise, and most of all the tourists. It’s been another boom year. And in 2017 many locals in the favourite spots around Europe have said enough. It started in Barcelona where quiet neighbourhoods were transformed by tourists arriving to take up residence in rental flats, many of them through Airbnb. It was driving up rents and forcing locals out. Protest signs on the street read. This is in tourism. It’s an invasion. In English, of course, , so the tourists wouldn’t miss the point. A protest group called ARAN released video footage with a punchy music track of their attack on an open-top two of us slashing its tires and splashing it with graffiti. Passengers thought they’d been caught up in a terrorist attack. One sign that was spotted seemed even more threatening a black silhouette and the words why to call it tourist season if we can’t shoot them. in Venice, residents held a banner that read my future is Venice as they marched through crowds of visitors, and Rome is considering limiting visitor numbers. If you’ve ever tried to take a photo with the Trevi Fountain without a thousand other heads in the shot, you might understand why they may be popular tourism spots, but the people who call these places home have lost patience with the number of visitors and their behaviour. Eric Zelo is an associate professor of European history at the University of New England in America. And he’s also the author of the history of modern tourism.

Growth will continue with essentially the same rate up until 2030 years so we were looking at something that continues to grow for good historical reason. Governments worked very hard after world war two to create this multinational corporation or multinational organisations, I guess, what would eventually become the UN World Tourism organisation worked very hard to promote tourism and build it up because tourism was a way to build the economy. It was a way to prevent the spread of communism. It was a way to promote world peace.

How ironic that it’s creating grief?

Yeah, right. That’s absolutely right. It’s kind of fascinating as a historian looking at this and, and seeing some of the commentators saying governments need to try and stop this almost like tourism is a plague sweeping across the globe like SARS, or swine flu or something. No, we built this, with good motives in mind.

Rome is now putting officials on patrol to stop people from swimming in the fountains. in Parma in Mallorca activists set off flares outside a restaurant and threw confetti at diners. harmless, perhaps, but scary for those involved. They’re planning another protest in San Sebastian in a week, the Spanish Prime Minister has delivered a reminder that tourism makes up a good deal of the country’s economy, and warning people off is not the best strategy. Numbers are higher this year because of terrorist attacks in Turkey, Egypt and Tunisia, where Britons and others used to flock it’s a delicate balance for the places still in favour, put out the welcome mat and take the money that comes with it, while not creating an intolerable environment for those left behind. When their summer of discontent is over. This is Lisa Miller at work in London for a correspondents report.

1. False 2. True 3. True 4. False 5. True 6. False 7. True
8. Modern Tourism 9. historical 10. communism 11. world peace 12. plague
13. C

Read the text about the negative effect of tourism boom in Barcelona.

Here are the words and phrases covered in this lesson:

  • bad behaviour
  • cruise ships
  • day-trippers
  • economy
  • exponentially
  • heritage site
  • local shops
  • major impacts
  • mass tourism
  • overcrowding
  • pollution
  • popular tourism spots
  • rising prices
  • visitors
Discuss the following questions in your classmates or with a friend.

  1. What are the pros and cons of tourism in your country?
  2. How does tourism affect your neighbourhood?
  3. What experiences do you have of the downsides of tourism?
  4. Do you think you enjoy the benefits of tourism? In what way?
  5. Do you think tourism should be curbed in any way? If so, how?
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This topic provides students with an opportunity to discover their interests, values, belief and culture.

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This topic provides students with an opportunity to explore the way in which groups of people organise themselves through common systems or interests.

This topic provides students with an opportunity to look at the challenges and opportunities faced by individuals and communities in the modern world.

Here you will find exercise to practice for the different sections of IB English B examination for either the Standard (SL) or Higher Level (HL) papers.
Learning English requires not just a good vocabulary, but a strong foundation of English grammar to communicate effectively.

Here are some grammar exercise which give you the practice to be confident in communicating in English at this advanced level.

Word puzzles require not just a good vocabulary and a knack for spelling, but the ability to think logically and strategically.
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