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Tuesday 12 March 2024

When tourists cannot behave themselves

Just like Venice and Machu Picchu in Peru, the ancient Japanese city of Kyoto has had enough of badly behaved tourists.

Visitors will be banned from entering private alleys in Kyoto's famous geisha district, as the ancient city tackles over-tourism, The Japan Times reported.

Kyoto residents have long expressed frustration with tourists, especially in the city's Gion district, home to teahouses where geiko - as geisha are locally known - and their young maiko apprentices, perform their duties.

In December, a Gion district council comprised of residents urged the city of Kyoto to tackle the issue, saying their neighbourhood "is not a theme park".

One member previously told Japanese media about an instance of a maiko's kimono being torn and another who had a cigarette butt put in her collar.

Overcrowding and ‘unruly’ behaviour, including tourists eager to get selfies with geishas, are at the heart of the problem.

“We don’t want to do this, but we’re desperate,” local council member Isokazu Ota said.

“We are going to put up signs in April that tell tourists to stay out of our private streets.”

The rest of this captivating city of many temples welcomes tourists. See for suggestions, 

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