Tourists face fines for flip-flops in Cinque Terre

Posted by Nidha Narrandes on 11 March 2019

Tourist season is almost upon Cinque Terre in Italy, which means thousands are preparing to flock to the steep, winding, picturesque trails along the coastline.

Mountain rescue units, however, dread this period of time, when they have to deal with ill-equipped visitors who find themselves in trouble on the narrow footpaths.

Tourists with no apparent concern for their safety take to the trails wearing flip-flops, pumps and sandals and have to be rescued after mishaps and accidents because of their bad choice of footwear.

Tourists will be fined if they ignore warnings to use the correct footwear on Cinque Terre trails. Picture: Pixabay

To clampdown on day-trippers ignoring advice on what shoes to wear, national park authorities are introducing a public information campaign. Thereafter, visitors who ignore the rules will face fines of between €50 and €2,500 (R806 and R4,031) depending on how much they’ve inconvenienced authorities.

Cinque Terre, which literally means The Five Lands, links the former fishing villages of the coastline in the northwestern region of Liguria and welcomes 2.5-million visitors every year.

About 750,000 cruise ship passengers are expected this year as compared to 450,000 last year. More tourists will make their way by trains that run alongside the coast.

Patrizio Scarpellini, head of the Cinque Terre national park said, ‘The problem is that people come here thinking they are at the seaside, but the paths above the villages are like mountain trails. First we will introduce the information campaign, then we’ll start issuing fines.’

During tourist season a year ago, a German family who tried to cross the rocky path with a pram had to be rescued, as well as an elderly Italian man who tried to climb a cliff with his leg in a plaster.

Rescuers have warned that the trails are difficult and should not be tackled with flip-flops or without adequate water supplies.

 

Feature picture: Pixabay

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