The Chinese countryside exudes such incredible beauty with its flowering trees in full bloom during the springtime that it attracts many visitors from the urban areas.
This year is no exception, and Chinese tourists have once again left the crowded and polluted cities to enjoy the fresh air and beautiful scenery of the provinces.
However, the influx of visitors also comes with the negative impact of some unruly tourists who end up destroying the areas they visit.
This weekend, Sichuan’s Liangshan Yi Autonomous Prefecture became an unfortunate victim of ignorant tourists. According to West China Metropolis Daily (via Shanghaiist), most of them went there not only to take photos of the alpine azalea flower,s but also to take home some “souvenirs”.
Netizens were outraged after images of the visitors hit Chinese social media over the weekend. In the photos, tourists can be seen breaking off branches and uprooting full grown trees so they can take them home. Tourist officials later pointed out how useless it was to steal the trees since they only survive in high altitudes.
One heartbreaking image shows tourists using tree branches to make a fire for a barbecue.
Local authorities have reportedly responded to the havoc created by the tourists by announcing an emergency investigation to look into better strategies to protect the environment.