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Beach in Sarranto, Italy
Photograph: Lucky Team Studio /

This Italian destination just banned bikinis – and it’s not the only one

More and more travel hotspots are cracking down on tourist behaviour – including swimwear off the beach

Ed Cunningham
Written by
Ed Cunningham

Heading to the picture-perfect Italian clifftop town of Sorrento this summer? Well, you might want to watch out for some pretty strict new rules that target tourists. The town will soon be banning bikinis and handing out €500 (£425, $505) fines to anyone caught wearing one.

And it isn’t just bikinis that Sorrento is kicking up a fuss about – the new rules also include fines for toplessness, too, regardless of gender. The mayor of the town has said that bikini-wearing and topless tourists make locals feel ‘discomfort and unease’.

Now, no doubt you’ll be thinking that this is all a bit OTT. Sorrento is a holiday hotspot, after all – how else are you supposed to keep cool on the beach? But don’t worry, the Campanian town isn’t banning bikinis and toplessness everywhere. The new rules don’t apply to people at beach clubs or at swimming pools, so you’ll still have somewhere to get those tan lines.

Sorrento’s new rules appear to be part of a much wider post-pandemic push by destinations to transform the impact of tourism on local communities. Back in May, both Barcelona and Majorca introduced fines for bikini-wearers and topless people when they aren’t on the beach. In Barcelona the penalty can be as much as €300 (£255, $305) while in Majorca the fee goes all the way up to €600 (£510, $605).

So if you’re jetting off to any of these places this summer, keep your wits – and clothes – about you.

ICYMI: Covid cases are rising in tourist destinations across Europe.

Plus: could travel restrictions be brought back to curb the latest Covid wave?

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