Over-Tourism May Force An Entire Island In Indonesia To Close For One Year
By Leah Freeman-Haskin
Over-tourism is a growing concern for major tourist destinations across the world. The strain on resources and infrastructure has caused many locations to take drastic actions to rehabilitate their land.
According to cnn.com, Komodo Island has grown increasingly popular in recent years thanks to the addition of new flights and hotels in the nearby town of Labuan Bajo on the island of Flores. The park currently receives an average of 10,000 visitors per month.
Tourists are flocking to the Indonesian island to catch a glimpse of the super-sized lizards, or Komodo dragons, that live there. These venomous creatures can grow up to 10 feet long and weigh up to 155 pounds. The island’s exceptional diving, snorkeling, and natural landscapes are also a huge draw for tourists seeking outdoor adventures.
However, any upcoming plans to travel to this island nation may have to be put on hold. According to local media, Komodo Island will be closed for one year starting January 2020 due to over-tourism and an alleged smuggling ring in which 41 Komodo lizards were taken from the island and sold abroad.
Cnn.com states that during the closure, officials will reportedly embark on a conservation program aimed at increasing the population of the dragons while preserving their habitat.
In recent years we’ve seen the closure of both Thailand’s Maya Bay and Boracay Island in the Philippines due to over-tourism, making us wonder if this could soon become a necessary step to combat the influx of tourists and preserve the natural landscape of some of our favorite destinations.