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Progreso becomes Yucatán’s first disability-inclusive beach

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Carlos Rosado van der Gracht
Born in Mérida, Carlos Rosado van der Gracht is a Mexican/Canadian blogger, photographer and adventure expedition leader. He holds degrees in multimedia, philosophy and translation from universities in Mexico, Canada and Norway. Sign up for the Yucatán Roundup, a free newsletter, which delivers the week's top headlines every Monday.
Specialized equipment such as amphibious wheelchairs are operated by city workers with special training. Photo: Courtesy

Five floating wheelchairs and a set of movable rubber ramps are among the new amenities now available to disabled visitors who would like to enjoy the beach in Progreso.

The new infrastructure also includes three wheelchair-accessible bathrooms, a couple of showers, signage in braille, and improved ramps to access the boardwalk and beach with greater ease. 

The new facilities were installed and financed by both city and state governments and came at a cost of nearly 2 million pesos.

“These improvements will directly benefit 97,000 people in Yucatán with disabilities who will now have access to our beautiful boardwalk and beach,” said Progreso’s Mayor Zacarías Curi.

Earlier: Weekend mobility restrictions in Progreso are now lifted

Although the equipment had been delivered to Progreso earlier this summer, it was not immediately made available to the public because of now-lifted closures that came as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.  

These facilities for people with disabilities are being opened to the public in time for the Tianguis Turístico Mexico, the country’s largest tourism industry trade show. 

Initiatives to develop tourism destinations that are accessible to everyone is a relatively recent trend in Mexico, with the first inclusive beach being inaugurated in the state of Guerrero in 2018. 

As defined by the United Nations, accessible tourism is the ongoing endeavor to ensure tourist destinations, products and services are accessible to all people, regardless of their physical limitations, disabilities, or age. This includes publicly and privately owned tourist locations, facilities, and services.

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