Greek Government Protects Untrodden Beaches to Curb Mass Tourism

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Background

The Greek government recently took a significant step by publishing a list of 198 “untrodden beaches” that are now protected from bars, restaurants, and large gatherings. This move aims to preserve these pristine coastal areas and address the challenges posed by mass tourism.

Local Backlash and Protests

The decision comes in response to growing frustration among residents of Greek islands and coastal regions popular with tourists. Last summer, protests erupted nationwide, known as the “beach towel movement,” as locals voiced concerns about losing access to their own beaches due to commercial activities catering to tourists.

Government Action and Regulations

The conservative government in Greece has committed to controlling development and enforcing regulations on seaside businesses. In February, a law was passed to regulate coastal land use, imposing fines of up to 60,000 euros for businesses exceeding the allowed beach occupation limits.

Critics have called for more comprehensive measures to tackle illegal land use and protect the environment. The recent list of “untrodden beaches,” announced by the finance and environment ministers, is part of a broader strategy to achieve a balance between environmental conservation and sustainable development.

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