The Association of Parishes Councils in the Southwest Alentejo and the Costa Vicentina Natural Park have met to come up with a plan to combat wild camping and caravanning in their areas.
The association says it is to reinforce its commitment and willingness to collaborate with all the official bodies that are meant to be solving the current situation of widespread illegal activities.
The association urged the powers that be, for “the rapid conclusion of work on this matter and therefore change the legal framework in force for this activity."
There has been a huge rise in caravanning and camping in the Natural Park of the Southwest Alentejo and Costa Vicentina, leading to a total lack of control last year.
Caravans and vans have been parking along the cliffs, tents have been pitched in the sand dunes and parking area for beach users have been turned into caravan car parks.
Occupants of the illegally parked vehicles have been defecating in nearby scrubland, litter has ended up strewn across one of the region’s most beautiful countryside areas and the remains of fires indicate illegal activity during the summer season.
The association, "has alerted the authorities to the lack of control in recent years, with no apparent solutions, which is why we reinforce our concerns and demands with those responsible."
Recently, the Town Councils of Porto Covo, Vila Nova de Milfontes, Odeceixe, Bordeira and Sagres, the Municipal Assemblies of Aljezur and Vila do Bispo have taken positions that aim above all, "for the regulation and diligence of the competent authorities to solve this problem."
Since 2016, the Association of Alentejo and Algarve Campsites has tried work with the authorities on proposals for improvements in the regulation of the activity, but "without conclusions or progress to resolve a problem that is likely to worsen and which is potentially a source of conflict in areas of greater pressure."
The association warns that it is "indispensable" to have a more effective policing, especially in sensitive areas such as the Natural Park, and it is necessary to provide the authority for inspectors to act effectively and to have rapid change to the law to allow the authorities to impose on the spot fines.