Countries should build replicas of their most famous tourist hotspots to cut down on overcrowding at the originals, according to a leading Swiss academic.
Professor Bruno Frey from the University of Basel has written a new book calling for modern replicas of more than 100 tourist sites to be built to combat over-tourism.
Professor Frey said replicas of the most famous buildings in Venice or the Louvre in Paris could include holograms and augmented reality technology to entice tourists away from the original structures.
On Newstalk Breakfast this morning, said “wonderful buildings” like the Doge’s Palace and St Marks Basilica in Venice could be reproduced nearby.
“There are 130,000 tourists per day, some days, visiting Venice,” he said. “That is incredible. People only meet other tourists.
“So, I suggest three or four buildings could be copied exactly and put near Venice – let’s say 10km or 20km away – and have it augmented by the most modern digital technology like augmented reality, virtual reality and holograms.
“People could visit these new places and see the Doge’s walking around as holograms and they would get informed about the culture and the politics of the day.”
He admitted his modern attractions would not offer tourists the same experience – but insisted they could offer things the originals can’t.
“My new revised originals would offer different things like the information about the culture, the information about the history and a much more attractive atmosphere than the one they now experience in those tourism hotspots,” he said.
“It is not the same but I want to offer more than the original places which will, in the near future, be so overcrowded by tourists that it will no longer be fun to visit those places.
“It is an attractive alternative, I think.”
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