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Netherlands to ban tourists from 'pot' cafes

Posted by Melanie Nayer  December 8, 2011 07:09 AM

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spacecakes-250.jpgThinking your next trip to Amsterdam will be full of "space cakes" and smoke-filled rooms? Think again.

The Dutch justice ministry announced just last month that foreign visitors will be banned from the well-known and typically tourist-filled cannabis-selling coffee shops in the Netherlands starting January 1. The reason? Seems bad behavior among young tourists and drug pushers taking advantage of the Netherlands' relaxed marijuana laws is to blame, according to the UK's Daily Mail.

While the new law was created to help curb late-night disturbances and inappropriate behavior, it also has tourism officials and local authorities worried. Amsterdam's relaxed laws have always been one of the big draws to the city, helping to fuel the local economy.
Under the new laws, the DailyMail reports that licensed coffee shops will be considered "private clubs with a maximum of 2,000 members limited to Dutch residents who are older than 18 and carry a co-called 'dope card'."

Of the 670 licensed coffee shops in the Netherlands, about 220 of them are located in Amsterdam.

Readers: Will you ban Amsterdam if Amsterdam bans you from visiting its cannabis-selling coffee shops?

*Photo credit: Heather Molina, On Common Ground

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About the author

Melanie Nayer is a travel writer who spent many years in the newsroom before jetting off to see the world. Her goal is to bring readers the best insider information More »

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