Spain holidays: Holiday resorts order strict beach closures in the Costa del Sol

Holiday resorts on the Costa del Sol have ordered beaches to be closed at night following the Spanish government’s new curfew on all bars. Following the move, drunken revellers have reportedly turned to beaches at night to keep the party going.

In a bid to further curb the spread of coronavirus, many popular coastal towns are now enforcing strict lockdowns on beaches overnight to deter party-goers.

The popular coastal town of Nerja, about 30 miles from Malaga, today announced the closure of its beaches from midnight until 6am.

The decision follows a similar order put in place by Marbella which has put a curfew of between 9.30pm and 7am to avoid barbecues, raves and late-night parties.

It is expected that further tourist resorts in different parts of Spain will adopt the same measure.

Nerja’s councillor for beaches, María del Carmen López said the beaches would be closed for six hours from midnight as a “preventive measure to avoid infections”.

As part of new coronavirus safety regulations announced on August 14, the Spanish government ordered pubs and restaurants to close at 1am and not to admit any new customers from midnight.

But authorities like Nerja and Marbella fear that the spin-off from this early closing could lead to young people holding their own parties in open spaces, such as beaches.

They say this is doubling worrying as a high percentage of new coronavirus outbreaks are connected to young people and to nightlife.


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Nightclubs, discos, cocktail bars and music venues have also been banned for the first time ever on a national level.

Spanish health minister Salvador Illa said nightlife wasn’t the main course of coronavirus outbreaks but where they did happen, more people were being affected and it was a very difficult task for tracking teams to find all contacts who might have been put at risk.

The latest beach order will be monitored by the local police, Civil Guard and Civil Protection.

“We want to appeal to the responsibility of all residents and tourists to avoid crowds at all times and in any place,” said María del Carmen López.

“We are also asking parents of children to make sure they too abide by the rules which are vital to stop the spread of the pandemic in our municipality.”

Marbella council said it had to restrict the hours of its beaches because of the constant outbreaks of coronavirus across the Costa del Sol and its holiday resorts.

Speaking on behalf of Ángeles Muñoz, Marbella’s mayor,  municipal spokesman, Félix Romero said: “Our goal is to prevent social gatherings, such as parties and barbecues, which could pose a risk to public health and a focus on possible outbreaks.”

Throughout Spain, there have been numerous outbreaks linked to illegal parties but the first directly connected to a beach was in the Balearic Islands where at least a dozen young people were tested positive.

The location of the beach was not revealed.

In Majorca and Ibiza, new restrictions are also targeting some tourist activities.

Regional governments in both areas have slapped a ban on pool parties and further emphasised the ongoing restrictions on boat parties, prohibiting them no matter where on the island they are berthed.

President Francina Armengol announced at a press conference on Monday that party boats and parties in venues with swimming pools are prohibited.

There is also a new ban on the sale of alcohol in any form of transport linked to tourism.

The measures are part of a new package of restrictions which hope to cut down large crowds of tourists.

Additional reporting by Rita Sobot.

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