Europe’s 10 tourist rules you never realised you had to follow
When your entire country can be considered a work of art or priceless history, officials sometimes have to go to extremes to protect their national treasures, leading to some pretty surprising rules that you need to follow when you travel.
Don’t sit on the steps in Rome
New tourist laws in Rome make it illegal to sit on the city’s famed Spanish Steps. The explanation: The newly renovated stairs are a centuries-old historic monument, not actually seating. The same goes for other historic stairways in the city; you can walk up and down, but don’t get comfortable by grabbing a seat or you can be issued a fine. It’s also against the law to bump your wheeled luggage and baby strollers down ancient stairs since it can destroy the stone. Even though these rules can sound pernickety, it’s become a necessity to protect the ancient highlights of the city since Italy is the country everyone wants to travel to this year.
Don’t wear heels in Athens
Rome isn’t the only iconic city worried about preserving vintage stone; in Greece, it’s illegal to wear high heels when you’re touring storied monuments like the Parthenon and the Acropolis in Athens, or any other ancient marble and stone historic site. (They’re notoriously slippery, so we wouldn’t recommend it anyway.)