Cala Varques in Manacor, prone to "saturation". | MDB

The Council of Majorca's PIAT plan for intervention in tourism areas envisages the creation of new car parks to serve out-of-the-way beaches. This would enable town halls to modify their planning regulations and establish parking spaces in accordance with the number set out in the plan.

Seventeen beaches* are being targeted - three in Alcudia, two in Andratx, four in Arta, two in Calvia, four in Manacor and one in both Felanitx and Santanyi. Among them is the contentious Cala Varques in Manacor, where barriers now prevent cars getting access to the cove road.

In calculating the number of parking spaces, the Council is taking into account the amount of space each beachgoer should have on the beach itself - fifteen square metres. A further factor is an assumption that each vehicle will have an average number of four people. The Council's land department believes that these measures will reduce overcrowding, aka saturation - both the number of visitors and vehicles.

Accordingly, the estimates of potential beachgoers and parking spaces differ. In the case of Cala Varques, for example, the figures for beachgoers and parking are 129 and 32 respectively.

Private transport is generally the only means of getting near to these beaches, although in some cases there is public transport. Arta town hall, for example, is organising its own bus service for Cala Torta.

* The seventeen are: Cala S'Illot, Es Coll Baix, Platja Sant Joan in Alcudia; Cala Blanca and Cala Egos in Andratx; Cala Estreta, Cala Mitjana, Cala Torta, Cala Camps (Arta); Cala Falcó, Cala Portals Vells in Calvia; Cala Magraner, Cala Pilota, Cala Varques, Caló Bota (Manacor); Cala Sa Nau (Felanitx); and Cala Llombards in Santanyi.