Progreso beaches beckon more tourists, but police shoo them away

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Police order visitors off the beach in Progreso on Friday morning. Photo: Diario de Yucatan

A family with two children, maskless and visiting Progreso’s malecon, enjoyed Friday morning taking photos of the beach and enjoying the breeze.

Soon after, another family parked their car and made it to the beach, taking a dip in the calm gulf water.

They were followed by more pedestrians on the promenade, some hanging out by the colorful letters that spell out the port’s name, others going for a jog.

The enjoyment did not last long. A municipal policeman patrolling in an ATV arrived and evicted about 40 adults and children from a 100-meter stretch of beach and boardwalk, reminding them that the area was closed due to the pandemic. A reporter from Diario de Yucatan witnessed the action and said that the visitors complied peacefully.

Restaurants, however, have been allowed to reopen after more than six months of lockdown. Rules regulating these businesses were loosened Thursday, and workers are preparing for a busy weekend, despite some threats of scattered thunderstorms.

Waiters said that more visitors arrive at the port every day.

Arturo Valencia Pacheco, who sells handicrafts in a stall near the boardwalk, echoed the area business guild’s proposal to reopen the tourist areas in a controlled manner. He said state and city authorities should take action to continue an economic reopening at the beach.

But a reopening appears to be gradually occurring no matter what the law allows. On Friday, the Diario reporter saw at least two pleasure boats sailing off the coast, and two jet skis — one carrying an adult and two minors — were bouncing on the waves. Recreational watercraft are still barred from operating in Yucatan.

Source: Diario de Yucatan

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