Tourists who dare to visit the protected Spiaggia Rosa or Pink Beach in Sardinia face steep fines ranging from €300 up to €3,500. On June 2nd, two tourists who strolled on the beach were fined, as well as four other who swam in the stretch of water in front of it a few days later. They had to pay an administrative fine of 300 euros each, for a total of 1,800 euros.
According to local media, it was thanks to numerous photographs taken by citizens and swimmers and their repeated reports that six people were snared and fined for bathing and landing on Rosa Beach on Budelli Island in the La Maddalena Archipelago National Park.
We expect 1,200 boats to visit the park every day this summer. Too many people are removing sand for souvenirs.Fabrizio Fonnesu, director of the Maddalena archipelago national park
Coast Guards had been trying for days to trace the identities of these tourists who, heedless of the numerous prohibitions on this protected beach, had moored their dinghies and sailboats a few meters from the shoreline and in some cases had disembarked on the beach where entry is prohibited for safeguarding reasons. “The beach is again in danger as people arrive by boat, clamber up the beach, then post photos,” Fabrizio Fonnesu, director of the Maddalena archipelago national park, told The Times.
Two other fines were issued by the Harbor Master’s Office against a yachtsman who was discovered sport fishing within the integral reserve of the Capo Testa Punta Falcone Marine Protected Area. The small village of Baunei has also implemented some measures to try to throttle the number of tourists coming to the area. “We can no longer afford thousands of daily sunbathers all squeezed in one spot as in the past, it’s unsustainable,” Stefano Monni, the mayor of Baunei, told CNN.
In 2021, a couple were fined €1,000 for filling a plastic bottle with sand, according to The Independent. The same violation would now cost €3,500. “We expect 1,200 boats to visit the park every day this summer and too many people are removing sand for souvenirs, which couples with increasingly violent storms to create erosion,” Fonnesu said.
Pink beach is considered one of the most beautiful in the world. Its name derives from the coloration of the sand, rich fragments of coral and a special pink microorganism, which give it a pink hue. The numerous visits, and the incivility of some people who used to take with them the sand, made it endangered. Since 1998 the area has been part of a reserve. People are not allowed step foot on the beach but it is possible to see it while on boat trips.
The Pink Beach, characterized by thick vegetation and located in an inaccessible place, conjures images of a small unspoiled cove, its isolation making it more tempting for adventurous spirits. With a length of 95 meters by an average width of about 20 meters, it has an area of 1900 square meters and can accommodate up to a maximum of 238 people comfortably distributed.
Beginning in 1998, authorities instituted regulations to preserve the beach, making it effectively inaccessible to anyone. The law states that anyone who removes, holds, sells even small quantities of sand, pebbles, stones or shells from the coastline or the sea in the absence of regular authorization or concession issued by the competent authorities is subject to an administrative sanction from 300 euros to 3,500 euros.