CROATIAN citadel Dubrovnik is becoming overwhelmed by tourists, a problem exacerbated by its use for filming in Game Of Thrones.

The “jewel of the Adriatic” is a Unesco World Heritage Site and cruise ships regularly dock there, bringing hordes of tourists to see the historic area.

Dubrovnik is a prime example of the effects of mass tourism, a global phenomenon by which the increase in people travelling means standout cites, particularly small ones, get overwhelmed by crowds.

As the numbers of visitors keeps rising, local authorities are looking for ways to keep the throngs from killing off the town’s charm.

“It’s beyond belief, it’s like living in the middle of Disneyland,” says Marc van Bloemen from his house overlooking the bustling old harbour in the shadows of the stone city walls.

On a typical day there are about eight cruise ships visiting the town of 2500 people, each dumping some 2000 tourists into the streets.

He recalls one day when 13 ships anchored there.

In 2017, local authorities announced a Respect The City plan that limits the number of tourists from cruise ships to a maximum of 4000 at any one time during the day – the plan still has to be implemented, however.

The Discoverer blog recently wrote Dubrovnik “is a highlight of any Croatian vacation, but the crowds that pack its narrow streets and passageways don’t make for a quality visitor experience”.