There is something to be said about discovering a place no one knows about. There is a certain magic to having your own private escape. Quiet. Serene. Beautiful. However, these spots are becoming increasingly rare.
Social media is a great tool. It has countless benefits and evidently, I am all for it. The quest for the perfect Instagram picture has created demand for information. Bloggers (like myself) share directions and locations to some of their favourite spots. As a tourist, this ability to learn local secrets and hot spots, is something I really appreciate. As a blogger, I like sharing information and helping other people have the same great experiences I have enjoyed. Accessibility is important.
However, there is a catch. Deep Cove is a perfect example.
I have grown up with Quarry Rock in my community. This hike used to be a local favourite, a perfect outdoor activity to do with family and friends. Now, any local I know wouldn’t touch that trail with a ten-foot poll in the prime-time of summer. It has become so overrun with tourists that capacity limits have been implemented. The trail also faces more degradation from the high level of traffic. Gone are the days when it served as a peaceful walk in the woods. Instead, you are now basically tripping over the heels of the person in front of you and yelling to be heard over other conversations. Getting a picture at the top without other people in it? Good luck.
Though the extreme business has brought inconvenience to locals of Deep Cove (increased traffic, no parking, the takeover of Quarry Rock), it has also brought economic benefit to the merchants. Restaurants are busier than ever and the quaint boutiques receive plenty of foot traffic. It also greatly positively impacted visitors. They have experienced Deep Cove in all of its natural beauty and leave with fond memories. Perhaps it was even the highlight of their trip to BC.
Deep Cove has morphed. The once sleepy town is bustling with activity. A local haven has turned into a tourist trap.
The question I ask, is where is the line? When does sharing or oversharing change the very essence of a place? Is this change simply part of natural evolution or is it unnatural? Is it our job to share these places with others, or preserve them?
Honestly, I’m not sure. I love going on adventures, researching new places and discovering new destinations. However, where I live (not directly in Deep Cove) is off the beaten path. It is a breath of fresh air, to escape the crowds and enjoy peaceful quietness and natural beauty. Our neighbourhood would be horrified if the location was featured on blogs or new sources. I’m left feeling torn. Perhaps it’s selfish that I wish to keep my paradise secret. Perhaps I am merely protecting its natural state. All I know is that I don’t have an answer.
What do you think?