Cars parked on the main road near Cala Varques. | Maria Nadal

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Cala Varques in Manacor has been the focus for various issues over the years - camping on the beach; an illegal beach bar; "saturation" in terms both of beachgoers and boats; a row over access to the beach that led to gates being locked; and parking for the beach, which has included residents finding themselves unable to get in and out of their properties because of cars parked in front of gates.

As far as the parking is concerned, there is now to be a car park. With capacity for just 32 vehicles, it will be around two kilometres from the beach at the start of lane that leads to the cove. Manacor town hall has forwarded the plan for this car park to the Balearic Environment Commission, which will report on its feasibility. Assuming there is no problem, the town hall will raise a tender for building the car park; it won't be ready until summer 2023.

The town hall project also envisages improvement to the public part of the lane and the creation of a bicycle parking area, with a maximum capacity for 15 bikes at the entrance to what is a private estate. Inside this property, the town plans to expropriate the lane. It is use of this that once resulted in the owner padlocking the gates. The town hall wants to ensure that emergency vehicles can get to the beach. A total area of 5,088 square metres will be expropriated.

Traffic and parking have been problematic for years. In 2018, the town hall closed off the access lane to all but residents. This just made matters worse. More cars than ever were parked on the Portocolom-Porto Cristo main road. In 2020, the Council of Mallorca installed wooden barriers and painted yellow lines on the road in the vicinity of the Cala Varques lane. This proved to be ineffective as well.