Beer Bike, Amsterdam
Beer bikes have been banned from Amsterdam's city centre after residents complained about drunken tourists behaviour on the mobile bar. Reuters

A beer bike ban has been enforced in Amsterdam after residents complained about the behaviour of drunk tourists in the Dutch capital.

A judge ruled that from Wednesday (1 November) beer bikes would be banned from the city centre to prevent "nuisance" and disorderly behaviour.

The mobile bars are popular among tourists who flock to the Dutch capital for stag parties and other group celebrations.

But for residents the tourist attraction has become a symbol of disorderly behaviour. They are fed up with tourists urinating in public and shouting loudly as they cycle through the city, while drinking beer.

Last year, 6,000 residents signed a petition calling for a ban on the bikes, which they described as a "terrible phenomenon." One resident told a Dutch broadcaster that the bikes had transformed Amsterdam into a "giant attraction park."

Amsterdam's late mayor, Eberhard van der Laan, who died last month, agreed with residents and proposed introducing a ban. Judges struck down the ban at the time, arguing that it was not properly motivated.

However, on Tuesday (31 October), Amsterdam District Court ruled that a ban would be enforced. "The combination of traffic disruptions, anti-social behaviour and the busy city centre justifies a ban," the court ruled.

Amsterdam is struggling to cope with the overwhelming number of tourists who visit each year. When the financial crisis struck in 2008, the Dutch government invested heavily in tourism in a bid to boost the economy.

The investment was a success and the Netherlands experienced a tourist boom. But quickly the effect of mass tourism started taking its toll and authorities were forced to carry out damage control.

In the past decade, the number of people visiting Amsterdam has increased by 64%, with a record 18 million tourists travelling to the city of 850,000 residents last year.

In an attempt to curb tourist numbers, Amsterdam has introduced a series of measures, including a crackdown on Airbnb short-term rentals and a ban on tourist shops in the historic centre.