Who watched the last series of ITV's "Benidorm" where two of the characters were arrested by the local police for "frolicing" on the beach ? Well I certainly laughed at the far fetched scene as I imagined most other viewers did ... Benidorm is certainly not Dubai!!!! How wrong can you be ...... then following a post on twitter I decided to investigate the matter. I went up to the Ajuntament (Town Hall) in Benidorm where the gentleman printed off a 35 page booklet (in Spanish obviously) for me on the By-Laws for the beach and streets of Benidorm - a lovely bedtime read I thought!!!!
"Infringement & Offences" of the by-laws are divided into 3 catagories: Minor - with a max fine of 750€, Serious - max fine 1500€ and Very Serious carrying a max fine of 3000€ !
Some of the infringements include playing games with balls or other equipment outside of designated areas that is disturbing other beachgoers; Using bath products such as soap/gel in sea or showers on beach; Playing loud music that is disturbing others; Urinating in sea or on public road; Swimming when the red flag is flying; Lighting a bbq on the beach; Fishing; Leaving glass or toxic material on the beach; Drinking alcohol on the beach; Sex on the beach. In addition the beaches are out of bounds between midnight and 7am to allow for cleaning ... and keep "courting couples" away no doubt.Now I have seen many of these by-laws being abused and I think it would be up to the individual police officer to decide whether to fine the offender for a particular offence, but they would certainly be within their rights to do so - so just be aware as it is your responsibilty to familiarise yourself with local by-laws of the country. As they saying goes "Ignorance is no excuse to break the law" ... you have been warned! If in doubt ask at the hotel reception or your holiday rep.