Pebble Thieves Are Ruining One of the Most Beautiful Beaches in Greece

Lalaria Beach, Skiathos, Greece
Photo: Getty Images

If you take a visit to this Greek island, don’t even think about taking a free souvenir back home.

Lalaria Beach on the Greek island of Skiathos is one of the most idyllic beaches in the world, mostly due to its clear waters and beautiful, smooth, white pebbles that make up the shore.

Lalaria Beach, Skiathos, Greece
Getty Images

Naturally, tourists can’t seem to help themselves when it comes to picking up one or two of the tempting little rocks and taking them home as souvenirs. But the practice is actually causing some real, detrimental impacts on the environment, Lonely Planet reported.

Thodoris Tzoumas of the Cultural Association of Skiathos said the pebbles are unique to Lalaria Beach, and pebble pinching has created a huge change in the landscape over the last decade. This is why Tzoumas’ office has launched an awareness and protection campaign to discourage picking up pebbles.

The Cultural Association and Skiathos Port Authority have posted signs and photos with the tag, “Take a picture, not a pebble.”

Lalaria Beach, Skiathos, Greece
Martin Barraud/Getty Images

In addition, visitors who are caught with pebbles will be fined anywhere between €400 and €1,000 (about $468 to $1,170 USD). The idea to impose fines was originally proposed in 2014, according to the Pappas Post.

The beach is only accessible by passenger boat, so it is probably quite easy to be caught. Next time you’re on the beach, perhaps it would be better to just take some pretty Instagram photos.

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