Spanish beaches open today – with zones segregating age groups, drone patrols and no ball games


Spain’s most popular beaches have officially re-opened to the public today amid urgent warnings of social distancing and “observing common-sense”.

All regions which have entered phase two of the government’s de-escalation plan are now allowed to welcome sunbathers and swimmers but some of the most popular areas are still excluded.

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All regions which have entered phase two of the government's de-escalation plan are now allowed to welcome sunbathers and swimmers

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All regions which have entered phase two of the government’s de-escalation plan are now allowed to welcome sunbathers and swimmersCredit: Alamy

The Ministry of Health has issued guidelines which include “the need for collective awareness regarding respect for social distancing” and keeping apart when in  the water. 

It recommends umbrellas should be at least 12ft apart. All the sand, railings etc have been extensively disinfected.

Many councils have taken their own steps to try and avoid the spread of coronavirus, including roping off “squares” for sunbathers, using ropes, bollards, tape or marks in the sand. 

Others have “planted” hundreds of umbrellas to signal social distancing whilst some beaches have introduced appointment systems or time limits.

There is little evidence of any municipalities using glass screens or greenhouse-style pergolas.

Many authorities have decided NOT to implement special measures, saying it is either too expensive to do so or they do not have the personnel. Instead, they say they have to rely on people’s commonsense.

The Ministry of Health has issued guidelines which include "the need for collective awareness regarding respect for social distancing"

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The Ministry of Health has issued guidelines which include “the need for collective awareness regarding respect for social distancing”Credit: Alamy

In the popular south of Tenerife, the beaches best known by Brits, including in Los Cristianos and Playa de las Americas, as well as the upmarket Costa Adeje area, have opened this morning “in an orderly way”.

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In Arona, the main beaches are open from 10am to 6pm with controls for capacity and safety distances and different zones for different users. The use of balls, spades and mats will not be allowed.

The local mayor,  José Julián Mena stressed the importance of “extreme responsible and civic behaviour, with the aim of guaranteeing the safety and health of the residents and visitors.”

In Adeje, the biggest hotspot for Brits, the local council is to stagger the opening of its beaches over the next week.

There is little evidence of any municipalities using glass screens or greenhouse-style pergolas

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There is little evidence of any municipalities using glass screens or greenhouse-style pergolasCredit: Getty – Contributor

A spokesperson said: “The council appeals to the part of responsibility that each and every person who goes to the beaches have to carry out this activity safely. and solidarity. Our destiny depends on your responsibility.”

Sunbeds have been withdrawn at this stage and there is a ban on smoking, the use of showers, no pets, no major picnics and no use of the walkways.

The council is recommending that people only use the beach for “two to three hours” and keep to social distancing.

In the north of the island, the capital of Santa Cruz has introduced extensive rules for its most popular beach of Las Teresitas and four others. 

They have been marked into zones, signposted and marked out, for families, couples and the elderly. 

A 400-metre strip has been left in front of the sea so people can walk around more freely. They are open from 9am to 8pm.

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Most people visiting the beaches will be wearing masks as the government says these are compulsory in public if social distancing cannot be guaranteed

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Most people visiting the beaches will be wearing masks as the government says these are compulsory in public if social distancing cannot be guaranteedCredit: Alamy

Mallorca and the rest of the Balearics have also entered phase two with most of its beaches marked out in two metre zones, with a warning not to stray out of these areas and to keep all belonging, including towels, inside the boundaries.

Elsewhere in Spain, local authorities are using other measures to control the crowds, including phone apps and “traffic light” signals to let people know if beaches are full and directing them elsewhere. 

Others are using electronic screens with real-time updates with information being provided in some regions  by drones as in Sanxenxo in Pontevedra.

Images taken over the shoreline will be posted on the social network.

Beach bars will also be allowed to open from today but again with strict social distancing and cleaning measures.

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Most people visiting the beaches will be wearing masks as the government says these are compulsory in public if social distancing cannot be guaranteed.

Those areas NOT in phase two, including Barcelona and Madrid, will have to wait another week or so before they are allowed to open their beaches. 
It’s estimated that about half of Spain is still in phase one.





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