A plan to manage visitor safety will be put into place for Greece’s iconic Navagio Beach on the island of Zante in response to last summer’s landslide which occurred on the beach. Efthimios Lekkas, the president Greece’s Geology and Geo-environmental Department, laid out the new plan in an announcement he made on Thursday morning.
Speaking with AMNA news agency’s radio station, Dr. Lekkas noted that “we have made significant progress since we pointed out the problem three years ago.”
Lekkas added that following safety concerns, his department is ”pleased to present the first visitor flow management plan for Navagio Beach, which will designate and demarcate areas” for tourists.
The beach will now include three zones. Lekkas explained that access to the first zone will be free, under certain conditions. The second zone will be restricted after rainfall or an earthquake, and it will be supervised.
The third beach zone will be completely closed off to all visitors.
Lekkas explained that Greek authorities cannot forbid access to tourists entirely, because there would be a huge economic cost, while appearing to exclude tourists from visiting and admiring Greece could harm the tourist industry.
The professor explained, “the plan will come into effect within the next few days, after some official bureaucratic procedures are completed, since the tourist season begins very early in the region and the beach has to be open for use.”
Special signs will be placed on the beach to explain the new zones to tourists, while two or three people will supervise the area at all times to enforce a strict implementation of the rules.
Lekkas also announced that there are similar safety plans which are tailored to the needs of the beaches on nine other Ionian islands. Beaches such as Porto Katsiki, Egremni and Agios Nikitas on Lefkada will have new measures implemented in order to minimize the possibility of accidents to visitors.
In 2018, a large landslide occurred on Navagio Beach, forcing the Greek authorities to take further security measures to avoid additional accidents.
With information from A.M.N.A.