Home Headlines Can you be removed from a “private” beach in Mexico? 

Can you be removed from a “private” beach in Mexico? 

by Yucatan Times
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Hotels, restaurants, and, lately, foreign migrants from various countries, think they own the beaches. They are common practitioners of the supposed privatization of spaces by the ocean. This practice violates the law.

(Chelem Yucatan – Times Media Mexico) – Once again, in Chelem Yucatan, a problem arises between a foreigner and a local visitor to a beach, who is pushed out and threatened that the police will be called when her two dogs cross an area limited by ropes in a foreigner’s home.

Mexico is home to more or less 11 thousand kilometers of coastline comprising three large areas of sea. The Pacific, the Gulf of Mexico, and the Caribbean, where hundreds of beaches are distributed, serve as destinations for locals as well as millions of Mexican and foreign tourists during vacations. However, a problem is becoming common: foreigners who claim that their beaches are private.

This practice is not new, and it has cost municipal, state, and federal governments a lot to reverse this “privatization” of spaces by the sea, which became a common practice of hotels, restaurants, and other tourist establishments since the 1980s; however, the law states that beaches are the property of the nation and public use.

The decree issued by Congress states in articles 8, 127, and 154 of the General Law of National Assets the following: 

  • Access to maritime beaches and the contiguous federal maritime-terrestrial zone may not be inhibited, restricted, obstructed, or conditioned.
  • The owners of land adjacent to the federal maritime-terrestrial zone must allow free access to the same and the maritime beaches…
  • Owners of land adjacent to the federal maritime-terrestrial zone who impede, inhibit, restrict, obstruct, or condition access to the federal maritime-terrestrial zone and maritime beaches will face severe sanctions. They could be fined between three thousand and up to twelve thousand times the current Unit of Measurement and Updating (Unidad de Medida y Actualizacion y Actualizacion), ensuring that justice is served.

The Ministry of Tourism, headed by Miguel Torruco, has taken a strong stance on this issue. They have stated: ‘The laws must be complied with by everyone equally, so Mexican beaches are neither privatized nor is their access restricted to any citizen of this country,’ reaffirming the government’s commitment to protecting public access to beaches.

Therefore, and with the understanding that BEACHES ARE NOT AND CANNOT BE PRIVATE, any local inhabitant, visitor, or national or foreign tourist affected by a situation of this nature will have the law on their side to show their disagreement. No matter if it is a establishment, business or person who tries to restrict access to a beach, whatever the tourist destination, including the beaches of Chelem Yucatan. 

J. Argaez
The Yucatan Times
Chelem Yucatan, Mexico

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