It had to happen! Finally common sense has prevailed. Venice has placed a ban on cruise ships from entering the Grand Canal after protests from local residents.  The Italian government has announced that large cruise ships will be banned from entering Venice's historic centre. Venetian residents have long wanted a ban on cruise ships, arguing they damage the city.

Ships weighing more than 1,000 tonnes will be re-routed away from certain waterways from September 2019, a move that comes after a year-long campaign by residents.

The protests against cruise ships intensified after an accident in June in which a ship collided with a dock, injuring five people, including two Australians.

Angry Venetians carried banners reading "Ships out of the lagoon" and "No big ships" while others took to rowboats in the Venetian Lagoon.  

Venice hosted 594 cruise ships in 2018 – that’s way too many people in my opinion. The streets are over-crowded and it’s impossible to get into restaurants or coffee shops. The queues to get into the Duomo tell their own story.

Critics say the currents created as the ships pass by are damaging the Renaissance buildings. At last people are putting the city and its historic buildings first.

By Vicki Williamson

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