The following article appears on The Local.
Stintino, one of Sardinia’s most popular beach areas, is considering a ban on towels to help protect its spectacular white sands.
A towel ban is just one of several measures proposed to protect La Pelosa beach, which in at the height of summer can attract several thousand visitors each day.
In a plan presented this week, Stintino’s Mayor Antonio Diana said beachgoers may also be forbidden from bringing large bags, as part of the efforts to prevent them – accidentally or on purpose – picking up sand and taking it home.
Instead, he proposed, folding chairs, mats and reusable see-through bags would be made available for visitors to rent.
The proposals have been met with anger by locals, according to La Nuova Sardegna, which says that many accuse the mayor of trying to turn Stintino into a resort for wealthy tourists.
“People can say what they like,” Diana told La Repubblica. “The important thing is to save La Pelosa.
“We didn’t come up with the idea of banning towels. The entire plan is based on scientific studies that indicate towels as one of the biggest dangers, since when they’re damp they retain a lot of sand. This isn’t some airy-fairy idea.”
Diana has already signed off on measures to limit access to the beach by car, notably by removing the road that currently leads right to within a few dozen metres of the sea and replacing it with pedestrian paths and cycle lanes. The beach itself will get a new raised walkway to help keep foot traffic off the fragile sand dunes. Continue reading at The Local.