The old houses in Betlem. | MDB


The Es Canons finca in Arta will receive more 2017 tourist tax funding than any other project. The 4,746,616 euros is the price that the regional government will pay to acquire the finca. The purchase is said to represent one of the most important of this year's projects, which is fairly obvious given the cost.

The idea is that the finca's natural heritage will be developed. Arta town hall has been calling for this for years, and there has been all-party support for the acquisition. Arta has also long felt that it doesn't receive financial recognition for the fact that it has maintained its coast in an almost totally unspoiled condition; other town halls have had this recognition. While the town hall won't itself be a beneficiary, the purchase of the finca is some form of compensation for efforts made in conserving the coastal environment.

The finca is around sixteen kilometres from the centre of Arta. It is situated between Colonia Sant Pere and Betlem and covers some 170 hectares. It was declared an area of special natural interest in 2000 and included the Nature Network 2000 of protected coastal sites. On the finca are old houses that were ceded to the town hall by the owner and which have been available for use by residents of the municipality for the holding of meetings and other events. In addition, there are the old Betlem barracks and a heliport.

The houses are of particular interest, and the tourist tax funding will go towards the development of a refuge hostel for hikers and those interested in nature tourism in the area. With the acquisition, the Llevant Nature Park will also be expanded.