Forget the idyllic picnic on the Apulian beaches, because the local beach bosses have drawn up their own rules with the support of the regional government and they are not tender, according to La Repubblica. Bringing your own provisions is now out of the question. Even the locals look at these strict regulations in amazement and hit back with rebellious sunglasses on their noses.
No more pizza on your own blanket
Where has that delicious pizza on your own towel gone? The popular beaches on southern Italy's enchanting Adriatic coast have changed the rules: bringing your own food and drink is now banned.
This sudden turnaround not only provokes indignation among tourists. The local residents also think that it is getting very hot now and brave the heat to take action. "This really beats everything," says Dario Duso, lawyer-activist in Bari.
Where the beach bosses are sailing a hard course, the prices of the beach bars and restaurants seem to be getting higher and higher. As a result, families feel compelled to bring their own food, but that is bad for the turnover of the beach bars.
As if that were not enough, some Apulian beaches already charge a fortune in entrance fees. From 30 euros at Mar Village in Giovinazzo to 100 euros for a premium spot at Lido Santo Stefano in Monopoli. And of course you have to pay extra for all the extras.
Even for a bottle of water you now soon have to pay a few euros, which in Italy is already a lot of money for something that comes drinkable from all the fountains in every village.
Day at the beach? 250 euros
A day at the beach for a family from Bari now easily costs between 250 and 300 euros. Salad against the heat? 25 euros. 'It seems that there are fewer and fewer free, public beaches left. If they also ban food, then we have really crossed the line of good beach fun,' said the indignant members of the local association D'Urso.
Operators admit that the rules have been tightened, but they assure us that the controls are not as strict as you might think. "We say no to large cool boxes for group picnics," explains Michele Colella, manager of the Lido Calarena, which has been lovingly run by his family since 1934. 'A small snack, drink or modest cool box is still acceptable, we really don't make a fuss about that.'
Sunburn and thrills on the beach
The southern Italian does not shine everywhere Sun equally friendly. An incident in Salento raises the temperature considerably. Three families said they were threatened there when they brought out their own refreshments, while they had already paid nicely for sunbeds and an umbrella.
"We were just intimidated," says a family member. 'As soon as we opened the bags with food, employees came threateningly at us. Take away your own food or we'll escort you to the exit!'
The rules in the popular Italian region have been tightened because tourism wants to focus on the luxury tourist. After all, it brings in more money. It is now too much for Italians themselves. This summer they massively booked a beach holiday to Albania on the other side.