Speaking about overtourism & local travel

We love talking about how we set up the Spotted by Locals network in 2008, why we think we make a small but meaningful contribution to making the world a better place, and how me manage our “multinational” from the road as global nomads.

Some of the congresses we spoke at Rijeka 2020, WTM London 2017TDS Europe 2016 in London and The Economist Future of Travel 2015.

We love talking about: local travel & overtourism

We believe that by experiencing a destination like a local, travelers learn about the culture and habits of the inhabitants. We are convinced a better understanding of different cultures will make the world a better place. With Spotted by Locals we aim to change as many travelers’ lives as we can.

We are increasingly worried about overtourism. We promote locally owned spots outside of the touristy center and since 2018 exclusively launched guides to cities that can actually use more tourists.

Panel discussion The Economist Future of Travel 2015

Bart in panel discussion The Economist Future of Travel 2015

Sanne speaking at Rijeka 2020 congress

We love to talk about: our community

As two travel addicts frequently frustrated by the obvious, touristy, impersonal, and out-of-date tips they found in their travel guides and on travel websites, Sanne & Bart van Poll launched Spotted by Locals in 2008.


Sanne (left) and Bart van Poll

Starting as an experiment blog with insider tips for Amsterdam in 2008, Spotted by Locals is now a series of apps and blogs with up-to-date tips by locals (or “Spotters”) in 82 cities.

What makes us different from other city guides?

  • Real locals: our locals live in the city and speak the language;
  • Quality selection: Locals are selected, and only write about their favorite spots;
  • Up-to-date: All our articles are always up-to-date and up-to-season;
  • Unbiased: Locals don’t accept any form of compensation

Spotters are handpicked, speak the local language, write about their favorite spots only, and keep all their articles up to date. Sanne & Bart meet all bloggers in person in their city.

Spotters weekend 2016

In 2012, 2014 our community of Spotters gathered in Amsterdam. In 2016 we organized the Spotters Weekend in Athens (read more).

We love talking about how we set up Spotted by Locals, and our wonderful community.

We love talking about: global nomadism

Since starting Spotted by Locals in 2008, Sanne & Bart spend about 6 months a year on the road.

Spotted by Locals doesn’t have any employees, and works with a large group of freelancers. We think this type of “flexible multinational” works well, and could be a model for the company of the 21st century. We love talking about the challenges and upsides!

Get in touch

We are open to all your suggestions. Please get in touch with co-founder Bart to talk about your ideas!
E: bart@spottedbylocals.com
T: +31 208 932 899

Last Changed Date: 2016-05-19 11:45:13 +0200 (Thu, 19 May 2016)