The long-awaited news about when Puerto Peñasco’s beaches would reopen is now known – with an official target date of August 1st. This comes following city negotiations with federal agencies, as well as Federal guidelines regarding beach reopenings across the country. Federal measures call for a distance of about 4 meters (approx. 12 feet) between people/family group, use of masks (nose/mouth coverings) to enter beach areas and when in contact with beach vendors, etc. (not when resting on beach, in water, or walking/running – though maintaining social distance), and controlling beach access points, among others.
On July 18th, local Federal Land and Maritime Zone Coordinator, Luis César García González, together with Municipal Ecology Director Marcia Ortega, went on air with La Reyna del Mar radio announcer, and Rocky Point 360 contributor, José Antonio Pérez, to detail upcoming guidelines for Puerto Peñasco’s gradual reopening of beaches beginning August. 1st.
What is essential to keep in mind is this is not a “normal reopening” for anyone and people must remain alert to all restrictions/protocols. In addition, depending on changing tides (space on beach) and # of people, preventive beach closures may occur from time to time. Fines to be posted, though warnings to be given prior to written fines.
General Beach Hours and Protocols
- Beach hours 8 am – 7 pm for general recreational use, limited numbers of people and strict social distancing
- 6 am – 8 am & 5 pm – 7 pm Beach access for exercising (walking, running, swimming, etc.), as well as period for beach vendors to set up carts/stands as applicable, and ZOFEMAT monitoring and beach clean-up.
- Beach closure 7 PM DAILY (to allow for evening clean-up crew again from ZOFEMAT)
- Masks (nose/mouth coverings) required when entering beach, also in interaction with any beach vendors, etc. Do not have to be used when exercising (though maintain social distancing), in the water, or when laying out (maintaining social distancing)
- Maximum 10 people in groups (if renting shade on public beaches, maximum 5 people per tent)
- NO GLASS BOTTLES – this is for environmental purposes – though alcoholic beverages will be allowed
- No Littering – that’s just being a decent beachcomber, plus as preventive measure as many items from beach have been in contact with people’s mouths (bottles, cigarette butts, etc.) – beach goers asked to deposit all trash in plastic bags (bring one with you is preferable) Trash to be deposited in plastic bags by individual vendors / beach goers – Trash spot specifically for discarded masks (to separate from general trash)
- Registration of people, groups, and times at beach access spots
- Pets allowed – on leashes, owners responsible for picking up waste
Resort & hotel beach fronts (Sandy Beach in particular – stretching from Playa Bonita hotel to the west)
- Strict health protocols already in place, with surveillance assistance from resort/hotel security staff
- Ongoing runs by Tourism Assistance Unit to reinforce safety measures
- Must follow federal guidelines concerning # of people, social distancing, monitoring hours, and ongoing disinfectant of hotel/resort beach chairs, etc.
Playa Hermosa (stretch from Peñasco del Sol toward Playa Bonita)
- ONLY ENTRANCE to be the Northern Access known as “Bajada de los Guardado” – entry off Calle Plutarco Elias Calles when coming from Calle 13. Entrance next to Las Gaviotas as well as smaller walkway near Peñasco del Sol to remain closed
- Health filter to be set up near this entrance, including antibacterial gel, sanitary tunnel, temperature checks, and random rapid testing
- Approximate 800 sq. meters of beach, to be sectioned into 4 quadrants for additional dispersing of people, preventing crowds. Maximum 10 people in groups – or 5 max for tent rentals
- Tent rentals to be spaced out checkerboard style, and taken down every evening
- Emergency health services to be set up, along with Covid info – near lifeguard towers by Las Gaviotas and near Navy palapa
- ONLY ENTRANCES to be located near Manny’s Beach Club and Pitahaya. Other access entries to remain closed.
- Monitoring of # of people in groups (see above)
Mi Playa (no access or entry from road) – beach itself open when walking from Mirador / Las Conchas beach areas (strong currents, so not good swimming area – just an FYI)
- Preventive closures depending on high/low tides and # of people
- Security booth at entrance to Cholla to assist with monitoring people headed to beach areas Pelican Point (pedestrians only, no vehicle entrance. JJ’s – entry depending on tides, preventing large # of people
- Cholla estuary area (prior to security booth), to have ongoing monitoring and only 1 access point. Pedestrian access only, no vehicle entrance.
Las Conchas / beaches to the east
- Additional monitoring via HOA personnel and periodic public safety staff
Beach Vendors / Bananas, etc.
- Strict health protocols in place by City including use of masks, providing antibacterial gel, social distancing to prevent crowding; clients must use masks when interacting with beach vendors, services
- Beach vendors can set up space – under strict social distancing – in period from 6 am – 8 am (those with carts, stands, etc.)
- Vendors cannot remain in one place for extended periods of time
- Specific indications and extra measures in place for those offering braids, henna tattoos, and massage – indications from COESPRISSON (State Health Commission)
- Water activities – banana, jet ski, etc. strict protocols in place, and depends on instructions from Harbor Master