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Many Italian tourist attractions are getting more savvy

We’ve been traveling to Italy for years (my first trip was 9 years ago).  We’ve noticed that tourist attractions are getting more savvy.

For example, most churches and museums no longer allow photography inside, but they have nice full-color books available for purchase (when they don’t have a book they should allow photography – pet peeve, and this is becoming more common).  Many have instituted admission charges as well.

There’s also more guidance for tourists; more signs in more languages, and in some cases volunteer docents hang around to engage people (we had a very pleasant experience at Santa Croce, for example).

One thing that hasn’t improved is the handling of crowds – streets are too narrow and roped areas to await entry are often too short, so the line spills out randomly.

And, it all depends on how many tourists flock to the destination; for example, Bologna isn’t as tourist-friendly as, say, Florence, perhaps partly because its a college town.

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