The Amalfi Coast, an Italian region particularly popular with tourists for its scenic cliffs and idyllic coastal roads, aims to limit the flow of cars. Since Wednesday, at peak times, tourist cars in the area are only allowed to drive on the road every two days, alternating according to their number plates.
One of the most popular tourist attractions in Italy is the Amalfi Coast, attracting millions of visitors every year. One of the area’s top attractions is driving along winding mountain roads to enjoy stunning views of the coast. But in practice, this mainly results in traffic jams, because the narrow mountain roads cannot cope with the abundance of cars and buses full of tourists.
Since Wednesday, a new regulation has come into force on the famous route between Vietri sul Mare and Positano, a breathtaking journey along a coastline of nearly 40 kilometers. Between 10am and 6pm, there will now be an alternative ban based on number plates at peak times. On even days, only cars with a number plate ending in an even number are allowed to drive on the road, and on odd days those with an odd number at the end. This restriction does not apply to residents of the thirteen coastal villages in the area or to public transportation, taxis or chauffeur-driven rental cars. Tourists and drivers in regular rental cars are subject to the new regulation.
Driving is applied alternately every day in August, and on weekends between June 15 and September 30. Rotating driving will also apply in the week before Easter and between April 24 and May 2. Local police will monitor compliance with the rules and can impose a fine for violations.
In addition to the alternating arrangement, the road manager Anas has also imposed a ban on entry for vehicles over 10.36 metres. This means that buses and big trucks are no longer welcome on idyllic coastal roads. Caravans and vehicles with trailers are also banned between 6.30am and midnight throughout the year.
You have to send an ambulance through this movement, anything can happen
Initially, the new regulations were due to go into effect as early as April 2020, but local objections and the Covid pandemic have caused delays. However, Angela Infante, Vice Mayor of Vietri sul Marie, is delighted. “It started again this year. You can’t drive on the weekends, people are locked in the house,” she told CNN. “You have to drive very slowly because there are so many cars, and the road is often completely deadlocked. Just enter an ambulance this hustle. Anything can happen,” she sighs.
Still not everyone is satisfied with the alternating system. Antonio Ilardi, president of the local hoteliers’ association, called the arrangement a “disaster” in an open letter to Anas. “It discourages tourists,” Elardi says. “It makes it impossible to stay on the Amalfi Coast for an odd number of days. If you arrive on Wednesday, you cannot leave on Thursday.” It is therefore proposed to make an exception for departing tourists. He believes that “tourists should be able to leave whenever they want to go to the airport or train station.” In addition, there should also be an exception for hotel employees who do not live in the coastal municipalities themselves, the hotel manager concludes.
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