Iconic Spanish Sand Dunes May Vanish Due To Selfie-ish Tourists

A Spanish beach’s protected iconic sand dunes could disappear completely because of tourists climbing them to take selfies, say angry environmentalists.

Gran Canaria’s legendary Maspalomas Dunes have mesmerised generations of beachgoers as a wild, untouched beauty spot.

But now – say island officials – they may be flattened forever by hoards of selfie-snapping holidaymakers climbing them despite a preservation ban.

Grim images published in local media show lines of tourists tramping over the flattened peaks, leaving huge lines of footprints in the sand.

Picture shows the Maspalomas Dunes in Spain, undated. It is one of the areas that are at risk of disappearing due to visitors. (Newsflash)

Officials say the dunes are at risk of disappearing completely after an influx of beach bars, cafes, and hoards of visitors trying to take the perfect snap.

They say selfish holidaymakers ignoring signs warning people not to scale the dunes cause the nature reserve to lose 45,000 cubic metres (9.9 million gallons) of sand every year.

The alarming loss of sand has sparked outrage among the local population, Spanish media report.

The protected space offers eight kilometres (five miles) of approved trails for visitors who want to enjoy the landscape without harming the natural dunes.

But the rules are regularly flouted – say local media – despite the threat of fines of up to EUR 300 (GBP 260) for rule-breakers.

Picture shows the Maspalomas Dunes in Spain, undated. It is one of the areas that are at risk of disappearing due to visitors. (Newsflash)

Maspalomas is not the only Spanish destination facing a similar problem.

The ban on scaling the dunes at the Zahara de los Atunes natural reserve in Cadiz Province is also often flouted, particularly during the popular summer months.

Por Andalucia (For Andalusia) party spokeswoman Inmaculada Nieto wrote on X (formerly Twitter): “People with kilometres of beach to photograph the sunset, and they do it from a few protected dunes. That kind of people…

“Every afternoon, the same thing.”

“The signs are clear, warning about the damage, and the area is cordoned off.”

“DO NOT ENTER THERE.
“DO NOT STEP THERE.”

Picture shows the Maspalomas Dunes in Spain, undated. It is one of the areas that are at risk of disappearing due to visitors. (Newsflash)

To find out more about the author, editor or agency that supplied this story – please click below.
Story By: William McGeeSub-EditorMarija Stojkoska, Agency: Newsflash

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