Amsterdam. The city with an exquisite artistic heritage, gorgeous canal system, numerous bicycle paths and lovely old-world charms. Apart from these lovely attractions, people do like frequenting her for its free spirit. Didn’t get it? Amsterdam is also popular for two other things- the thriving cannabis industry and the red light district tours. And now there’s bad news, the Mayor of Amsterdam, Femke Halsema has announced that the city will soon ban tourists from buying weed, apart from clamping down red-light district tours. So tourists who flock to Amsterdam to have the ultimate cannabis experience may have to rethink their plans.
What’s In It?
Amsterdam receives millions of tourists who visit here to spend time at coffee shops and dispensaries selling cannabis. In order to reduce over-tourism in the city, the mayor has revealed plans to reduce the number of coffee shops. The mayor stated in her letter to the city council that over-tourism in Amsterdam would experience a major dip if the number of coffee shops was cut down in the region. Halsema has estimated that around one-third of tourists would return less frequently to Amsterdam if they weren’t permitted to enter the coffee shops in the city.
The report suggests that 34% of tourists who were questioned if they would return to Amsterdam if coffee shops were closed, replied that they would visit the city less often. An additional 11% of people said that they would never return to the city. But interestingly, 22% of tourists said that they would ask someone else to purchase weed for them and 18% claimed they would find some way or the other to purchase cannabis.
Amsterdam has licensed coffee shops where selling marijuana from their premises is legal but production of this drug is illegal. However, there are cafes that deal in illegal drugs with organized gangs in the city. People have been visiting Amsterdam for its relaxed approach to marijuana for decades. In fact, Netherlands decriminalised cannabis in 1973 and the possession and use is widely tolerated by the police. But now with Amsterdam banning tourists from purchasing weed and shutting down weed cafes, tourists might have to think again when it comes to visiting this relaxed destination. Here are apart from cannabis, 10 Reasons Why Amsterdam Should Be On Your Bucket List