Influencer fined £1,500 for exploring pink beach | World | News

A tourist from Dubai was fined more than £1,500 for trespassing on a forbidden Italian beach, which has been closed to tourists to protect its famous pink sand which derives from its delicate ecosystem.

The incident was noticed by the Italian coastguard, who strive to protect the Spiaggia Rosa beach on the tiny island of Budelli off Sardinia, after the influencer shared photos and videos of them exploring the beach on social media. They had arrived illegally by boat.

Large sign boards inform visitors that the beach is off-limits but the influencer allegedly ignored them, reported the Italian press.

The woman, originally from Brazil but living in Dubai as a social media influencer, uploaded a video to the @Rogeriaguiadubai Instagram account, which has more than 35,000 followers. It shows her arriving on the beach in a rubber dinghy, before showing a clip of her footprints in the sand. She also added a location to the most, which read “Spiaggia Rosa – Budelli”. The account was made private on Saturday June 15.

The Daily Express has emailed Rogeriaguiadubai for a request for comment.

According to local reports, the videos upset locals in Sardinia and a complaint was lodged with the coastguard of La Maddalena archipelago, who were then able to track the influencer down.

Officers have since notified her of the £1,500 fine, of which £253.57 is for flouting the ban and £1,267.85 is for arriving onboard a boat that did not have access authorisation for Budelli.

Spiaggia Rosa’s pink sand is formed by crushed coral, crystals and fossils and dead marine animals. The beach used to be more pink, but due to rising levels of tourism in Budelli where visitors began to steal the sand to sell it or keep it as a souvenir, the pink hue began to lighten.

As a result, the Italian government made it illegal for any tourist to access the beach in 1994 in an attempt to preserve it. During the summer, visitors are allowed to take day trips to the island, from authorised boat tours and are permitted to walk along a path behind the beach, but are not allowed on the beach itself.

The rule was enforced again last year with greater rigour due to renewed fears that the beach could be ruined.

“The beach is again in danger as people arrive by boat, clamber up the beach, then post photos,” Fabrizio Fonnesu, director of the Maddalena archipelago national park, said last year.

A set of higher fines is also in place for those who take sand from the beaches. In 2021, a couple were fined £855 for filling a plastic bottle – a violation which now carried a £2,960 penalty.

In recent years, many influencers have been dealt with by the authorities after visiting banned locations and attractions. In April 2024, Honolulu authorities announced they were going to remove the historic Haiku Stairs following several incidents of hikers and influencers trespassing. In Majorca, protesters also recently attempted to ‘reclaim’ a beach turned into a holiday hotspot by influencer Instagrammers.

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