Debating the Impact of “Go” and “No” Travel Lists

Fodor’s, the travel company and guidebook publisher, compiles a “Go List” each year of the top 10 places recommended to visit. They also produce a “No List” of 10 regions to reconsider visiting due to tourism impact. Many of the destinations listed on the “no list” suffer from “overtourism” with visitation often exceeding capacity. Ironically, the 2023 “Go List” includes Crete and specifically mentions visiting the Palace of Knossos while on the Greek island. During my visit in May, the historic site experienced extreme crowding – partly due to cruise ship tours and school groups. This overcrowding created lines to view certain areas, such as the Throne Room, and made it more difficult to read the interpretive panels located around the site. Luckily, we opted to return later in the day when the site had very few visitors. These articles pose a question for all involved in destination marketing: does publicity contribute to overtourism, heighten a city’s brand, or encourage exploring lesser-known destinations? How valued are these lists to visitors and destination marketers?