As some countries begin to reopen their economies after months of coronavirus restrictions, people are welcoming the slow return to normality. For residents in Venice, the lockdown has been a blessing. For months, cruise ships have been banned from docking in the historic city. The giant vessels are controversial with residents – who argue they erode the buildings and bring too many tourists. For them, the first ship to arrive after the lifting of the ban was not a welcome sight.
Hundreds of Venice locals turned out to see the MSC Orchestra off. Their message: no more cruise liners near our city.
Earlier this year, protesters seemed to have won when Italy’s government passed a law banning big ships from Venice’s historic center. But there was a catch: The ban would only take effect after a suitable alternative is found, a process that could take years.
Italy’s cruise ship industry is not waiting any longer to get back to business.
For the roughly one thousand passengers on board the Orchestra, the opportunity to finally go on vacation was too good to pass up.
While the return to normal life brings much to celebrate, these protesters hope some things will never go back to how they were before.
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