Menorca residents join protests to block British tourists from Balearic streets

Homeowners in one Menorca tourism hot spot have joined wider Balearic Island calling on their government to impose restrictions on more than half a million visitors who arrive in their town each summer.

With a maximum of 500 permanent residents during the summer months, Binibeca Vell, Menorca, nicknamed the “Spanish Mykonos” has joined the wider campaign against over-toursim across the Balearic Islands.

Seeing 800,000 tourists during the summer months, 195 homeowners in Binibeca Vell have begun to put up chains to keep visitors out of their streets between 11 am and 8 pm, The Daily Telegraph reports.

The move follows a wave of mass tourism protests that have taken place across Spain in recent months as residents say they can no longer afford to live in their own cities because of the surge of Airbnb-type short-term lets.

Óscar Monge, president of the residents association, said Menorca’s authorities were to blame, and have left locals to fend for themselves.

Mr Monge said: “It’s outrageous that the politicians who run local tourism are telling us that the only alternatives we have to keep the place clean are to close it, privatise it or start charging.

“Binibeca is promoted by the administration and tourism companies, but what benefit do we get out of it?”

Locals have complained of tourists trying to enter their private staircase and scaling the walls of their homes to take pictures.

Mr Monge said the €25,000 a year he receives from the local authorities is not enough to compensate for the damage, adding “We pay dearly for being the most potent tourist attraction in Menorca.”

In 2023 tourism arrivals reached almost 18 million, a record for the Balearic Islands, which includes Menorca, Majorca and Ibiza. The archipelago has just 1.2 million permanent residents, with 14.4 million foreign tourists, mostly German and British.

On Friday workers took to the streets of Ibiza to protest against the huge influx of visitors, which they claimed is pricing locals and workers out of the island.

Read Next

menorca residents join protests to block british tourists from balearic streets

People think expats in Spain are super-rich – that’s not our reality

World

People think expats in Spain are super-rich - that's not our reality

Read More

Workers on the Spanish island of Ibiza are having to “hotbed” in rooms of up to six bunks while residents are forced to live in caravans due to soaring accommodation costs pushed up by mass tourism, campaigners said.

Activist Xaquelina Perry, who is originally from Wolverhampton but has lived on the island for 40 years, said the protests were not anti-tourism on Ibiza but rather a call for it to be managed better.

Ms Perry, who is part of the campaign group Prou Ibiza, told i: “We are not saying we don’t want tourists, what we want is to change the model of tourism. We want people to come here to enjoy our beautiful villages, our beautiful coves, our beautiful beaches.

“We are a Unesco World Heritage site. We have a lot more to offer than discotheques and drinking.”

Similar protests took place in Palma on Saturday with banners reading “Majorca is not for sale”.

It is expected to be the largest demonstration against mass tourism since last month’s protest in the Canary Islands.

Joan Ribo, one of the organisers of Saturday’s protest, told The Daily Telegraph: “We’re being expelled from Majorca and the Balearic Islands and replaced by whoever can afford to live here.”

“Families cannot afford to live here anymore, with the rent of a single bedroom costing more than €700 anywhere you go on the island. Basically, unless you inherit a house, you are condemned to leave the island.”

The Balearic Islands government is run by the conservative Popular Party, who have refused to introduce the rent cap system put in place by Spain’s Left-wing coalition government across the country.

However, Balearic leader Marga Prohens said earlier this month that “the time has come to impose limits and ask ourselves what tourism model we want”.

Ms Prohens said she will implement “courageous measures” to address over-tourism but has not made clear what these will be.

Jaume Bauzà, the Balearic Islands’ tourism minister, pointed the finger at his left-wing predecessors who he said let Airbnb rentals run riot, unregulated leading to the addition of 115,000 more tourism beds.

Mr Bauzá said the government would work against “tourist phobia”, adding, “What we need to do is to attack illegal tourism offerings, be they taxis, rental homes or commerce.

“If we can improve the tourism sector and combat the illegal market, we will have gone a long way to solving the problem.”

OTHER NEWS

19 minutes ago

Pro-Trump businessman leads huge month for megadonors pouring cash into election

19 minutes ago

Donald Trump Proposes Handing Out Green Cards to Millions of Migrants

19 minutes ago

What's at stake in the Toronto-St. Paul's byelection

19 minutes ago

Here's Why The Boeing 747 Was Discontinued

20 minutes ago

38 dogs were close to drowning on a Mississippi lake. But some fishermen had quite a catch

20 minutes ago

US thanks Romania for its president exiting Nato leadership race

20 minutes ago

‘Huge red flags’: Giuliani’s ‘mess’ of finances is slammed in bankruptcy court

20 minutes ago

Mother of Brazil's football giant Pele dies at 101

20 minutes ago

Several European countries and holiday islands hit by massive power outage

20 minutes ago

Record-breaking heat prolongs misery for millions across US

20 minutes ago

AI Is Turning Iconic Memes Into Videos & It's Incredibly Creepy

23 minutes ago

King Charles and Queen Camilla to visit Australia

23 minutes ago

Aussie's F1 hopes dented by fresh $2.1 trillion hurdle

23 minutes ago

Former Trump Aide Must Face Hunter Biden Lawsuit, Judge Rules

23 minutes ago

Barcelona aims to become Airbnb-free zone by 2029

23 minutes ago

Nasa faces $100,000 claim after space debris hits family home

23 minutes ago

Three people killed, 10 wounded in Arkansas supermarket shooting

23 minutes ago

Members of Britain's richest family get jail terms for exploiting Indian staff at Switzerland mansion

24 minutes ago

‘Best news': Advocates applaud SCOTUS domestic violence prevention ruling

25 minutes ago

Another Simpsons prediction comes true after bizarre 'three-eyed fish' found

25 minutes ago

Colombian-Born, Trump-Supporting GOP Tells Black Americans To Leave US 'If You Don't Like America'

25 minutes ago

Devils Acquire Adam Beckman in Trade with Wild

25 minutes ago

Trump Endorses Putting 10 Commandments in Schools - And ‘Many Other Places'

25 minutes ago

Schools Chancellor David Banks rewards bullying by ousting Maud Maron

25 minutes ago

Death by snacks! Tears for Callum the stag amid fears the popular deer was killed by the kindness of strangers

25 minutes ago

Moment farmer, 71, confesses to smothering his wife, 69, with a pillow as he is rushed to hospital for slashing his wrists in bid to make it look like a suicide pact - as he is jailed for life

25 minutes ago

Video: Kylie Jenner puts on a busty display in a white halter mini as she teases the latest drop from her Khy clothing line

25 minutes ago

Video: Love Island fans praise Harriett for bringing 'drama' as she labels Ronnie 'an actor' and he calls her 'childish' and 'muggy' in heated argument

28 minutes ago

NFL: Tom Brady unveils that he's not ready to start his broadcasting career

28 minutes ago

Young Americans are so obsessed with being rich it’s now distorting their views of their finances — here’s why ‘the norm’ no longer seems ‘normal’

28 minutes ago

England players not fit enough to press effectively, claims Gareth Southgate

28 minutes ago

BlackRock Says AI Could Be the 'Biggest Uncertainty We've Faced'

28 minutes ago

JK Rowling accuses Sir Keir Starmer of ‘abandoning women’

28 minutes ago

Who Has Won The Most Open Championship Titles?

28 minutes ago

Promising Red Sox youngster is worth every penny of extension

28 minutes ago

The Best St. Louis Blues Picks in Each Round of the NHL Draft: Fourth Round

28 minutes ago

Ex-Bronco Blasts Russell Wilson for Not Being Accountable in Denver Downfall

28 minutes ago

Browns' Stefanski Reveals How Tillman Improved During Minicamp

28 minutes ago

Tourist bucks weigh in with record economy boost

28 minutes ago

iPhone got too hot? Here’s how to keep your device from overheating in scorching temps