Have you always thought that you could not spend a pleasant day at the seaside with your friend because of your disability?
Disabled people with reduced mobility have always had difficulty to enjoy a warm day at the beach. Until a few years ago there were no accessible beaches in Italy, nevertheless the situation is now finally changed. Today there are hundreds of accessible beaches in Italy without architectural and natural barriers.
Tuscany and Emilia-Romagna beaches are the most equipped to welcome disabled people.
For example, the province of Rimini in Emilia-Romagna has started the project “Spiaggialiberatutti” (Beach free everybody), aimed at making 12 bathing establishment total accessible. After the success, many more beaches have become accessible.
Seashores are equipped with gangways to get to the water, beach and water carriages, lay-bys, beach beds and umbrellas for disabled people. All cabins are big enough to guarantee the access and internal rotation of the wheelchair. There are also tactile maps all around the beach establishment. Specialised lifeguards are always there to assist who needs help.
Another example is Moreno Beach in Tuscany (Marina di Grosseto), which has obtained the title “accessible establishment of the year”. It adheres with many Onlus to the project “Sea for everybody” that allows disabled people to enjoy one week at the seashore for free.
The province of Bari in South Italy has started a wonderful project that combine accessibility and environmental sustainability. “Sea track Tobea” is a gangway that absorb solar energy to make a carriage move. The carriage brings the disabled person from the beach to the water, without the need of a third person. This system is active in the Torre Quetta beach in Bari. This is a great step forward for the independence of disabled people.
Above all a disabled person should not only have the chance to get to the beach, but also feel welcomed and loved. Therefore, an accessible beach must primarily be inclusive. This is the main aim of the new projects for disability active in Italy.
In case you want to know exactly which are the most beautiful and accessible beaches, check out the list of accessible Italian beaches on this website: https://disabilinews.com/turismo-e-cultura-accessibile/spiagge-accessibili-per-disabili/