Marina Yardaeva Why do they not like tourists in the regions 06/11/2024, 14:07

The world was once incredibly fragmented. A hundred years ago people could live in a small area without understanding anything about each other. Even in some small Japan, the inhabitants of the north and south, some Ryukyuans and Ainu seemed to be representatives of different civilizations, no, different biological species. They spoke different languages, and some believed the latter came from dogs, while others thought the former was the wrong kind of fish. Not so now. Nowadays we have globalization, airplanes and the internet. And it seems that it is impossible for people not to understand each other in one situation: one language, one history, the same traditions. But human reality is still layered, no matter how you mix it up. You won’t see this until you start traveling around the country. Now they travel a lot willingly and with excitement. And how many discoveries people make! Especially about each other.

Russia is experiencing a boom in domestic tourism. You read the news: here the flow increased by 40 percent, there by 60 percent, and in some places there were 1.5-2 times more passengers. People travel to all aspects of our vast area. In the south and for a long time not only to the Krasnodar Territory, but also to Dagestan, Adygea and North Ossetia. To the center of Russia – they go around all these golden rings. Admiring the Urals and Siberia – Baikal and the mountain peaks of Altai. In the northwest and not only to St. Petersburg and Karelia, but also to Murmansk, Teriberka. In the west – they fly almost in flocks to Kaliningrad. Understandably, the interest is fueled by some rather sad events: The past year has left foreign travel inaccessible for most. But what difference does it really make, why are they leaving? What matters is what they see.

And they see a lot of beautiful, interesting, unusual things, a lot of things that make you want to come back. It’s just… Local residents are not ready for the influx of tourists everywhere. And travelers are not always ready to face a different social and cultural reality. And it’s not about the obvious mental conflicts that always occur, for example, with tourists from the central region in our Caucasian republics, when a complete storm can arise due to ordinary short circuits. After all, sometimes even in a neighboring area you suddenly find yourself a stranger and a savage in the eyes of the locals.

For example, something happened to me in Kaliningrad. In a conversation with a taxi driver, I mentioned the old construction site of Amalienau, and he started talking too. He said that I could completely ruin his rating and flood the service with complaints, but he no longer had the strength to hear about Amalienau, Luisenval, Kneiphof, Altstadt, Hans Platz and König Strasse. All this toponymy is taken from the mezzanines of history for hipsters from big cities who long for a closed Europe (where are they? When was the last time you heard of them?). Officials and business are flirting with fashionable tourists looking for the best Königsberg bedbugs, but for some reason they are outraged by Moscow prices. What else can the prices be if here even the Baltic sprat in the traditional “Pyaterochka” is more expensive than in some capital “ABC of Taste”? There is destruction, poverty and lawlessness everywhere, but there are conceptual restaurants, art objects, interactive Kant and other creative things for travelers.

I didn’t give the poor guy any points. I briefly stated that I also knew something about life, including various social sad things, and also assured that although I fully understood one citizen’s anger and perhaps another’s holiday, it really wasn’t very entertaining to watch. Still, I think restaurants, art, and imaginative new museums are good. And not only for visiting snobs, but also for the development of the city, its budget, and therefore for local residents. I don’t know if the taxi driver agreed with me, but he warmed up and the next part of the journey looked a bit like a sightseeing trip. The gap in misunderstanding between us has probably narrowed at least a little.

Meanwhile, I started looking at how the locals viewed visitors. And here’s what I’ll say. Many are still happy with the development of the city and the fact that it attracts tourists, but sometimes they look at the latter with surprise, as if they were aliens from Mars, sometimes with caution, sometimes with disdain, saying what can they take from these weaklings? .

And another incident occurred in Pskov. By the way, it is an amazing city that has developed incredibly over the last 10 years. It was once such a sad state that the Kremlin seemed to have been preserved by accident. It is now a garden city with landscaped squares, unusually designed observation decks, interesting exhibitions, good hotels and excellent cafes. The hopeless feeling of depression disappeared. This can be seen in people: most of them are calm, relaxed and friendly. They realized that increasing the tourist appeal of the area also increased their own comfort: Their children now have good playgrounds, special museum programs and exciting school trips. But mostly young people see it that way. The older generation also lives the same lifestyle. And ancient psychology tells them that they should not expect favors from strangers. Therefore, it is better to completely ignore the stranger regarding his interests and needs.

But here’s the thing. My friend and I went from Pskov to Mikhailovskoye to visit Pushkin’s places. There are two ways to get there: with an organized group from a travel agency or by bus. We chose the second option because we are individualists to the core. And they immersed themselves in the special world of the Russian province. If we can get there without incident, our return will be epic. If you think that for a successful ending it is enough to go to the bus stop in advance with tickets, sit on the desired platform (there is only one there) and wait for the bus to arrive, you are very wrong.

By the way, it turns out that the bus, not disfigured by any identification marks, costs nothing to slow down on an incomprehensible side of the road, a hundred meters from the landing place and somewhere exactly. Half a minute to let a few summer residents leave and hurry up. And it turns out that the cashier at the station could sincerely wonder how it was possible to miss transport in such conditions. The bus stopped somewhere there but stopped. What does this mean, it is not clear whether this is true or false, there is no one else here – everyone knows it. How can I refund the tickets and compensate for the taxi fare? It’s your fault for not understanding how everything works here! Go back to the bus? That’s it!

However, the bus was returned to us. And half a third of the grandmothers of the hall then told us how mistaken we were and how we went to someone else’s monastery with our charter and often came in large numbers. Wonderful!

Or isn’t it still like that? Isn’t there anything strange? And is it common for tourists in regions to be mentally rejected? There are even annual surveys that measure locals’ loyalty to travelers. Interestingly, Kamchatka turns out to be the most hospitable in this regard – 74% of the population welcomes visitors here.

This is probably due to the low number of visitors. Because the pattern is exactly this: the stronger the tourist flow, the higher the degree of discontent. For example, in the Krasnodar Territory, only 26% of local residents are satisfied with holidaymakers; The rest are annoyed by the bad behavior of tourists (38%), their careless attitude towards nature (29%), their lack of respect for service personnel (29%). %) and appearance (%18).

And this, of course, is not an exceptional misfortune for us. From time to time we hear that Venetians want to be protected from the “herd of tourists”, and sometimes we hear that slogans like “Go to the tourist house” appear on the facades of houses in Barcelona. And it’s not just that the huge influx of tourists has a devastating effect on the infrastructure of cities popular with travelers. Yes, the load is of course increasing, but if the lion’s share of the regional budget comes from tourism, its absence will destroy the infrastructure of the place much faster. And crowded conditions, noise and discomfort are not what tourists mean. Of course, they create a certain physical discomfort, but local residents often complain of moral, not physical, pain.

The point is completely irrational, old attitudes that cause an inexplicable fear of strangers. Yes, this is the 21st century, globalization, multiculturalism, transparency. But even today even residents of neighboring villages sometimes remain representatives of each other’s different civilizations. Can this gap be closed?

The author expresses his personal opinion, which may not coincide with the position of the editors.

What are you thinking?



Source: Gazeta

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