Norway is feeling the thaw of ‘Frozen’, Disney’s mega-hit animated film that’s causing tourism to spike and infrastructure to degrade.
News.com.au reports that Norway’s Lofoten Islands, located north of the Arctic Circle, is being overrun by tourists who arrive in search of ‘Frozen’-inspired snow-capped landscapes as well as locations featured in other Hollywood blockbusters filmed there.
‘Frozen’, which was released in 2013, has led to an astounding 20% rise in foreign visitor numbers to the country, and that number continues to climb. Last summer alone, more than one million visitors arrived in the Lofoten Islands.
But a tourist spike also comes with a host of problems, as the country is now seeing. Public facilities in Lofoten are being exhausted, with problems like waste disposal, public toilets and car parking. Locals are also concerned about severe erosion of paths leading to the coastline as well as the mass amount of garbage being left behind by tourists. One small woodlands near a top mountain climb has even been dubbed “the forest of sh*t” by residents.
More than a million tourists were expected to travel to Norway between April and September. Fredrik Sordal, the mayor of the town of Flakstad, said tourism these days has been “challenging”.
“In Flakstad we have, for example, become extremely unbalanced when it comes to tourism this year, and need to take many measures before next year,” he told Norwegian broadcaster NRK.