The mirador in Deya attracts large numbers of visitors. | Elena Ballestero


Icomos is the organisation that controls Unesco World Heritage Sites. It has created a Cultural Tourism Charter of recommendations and guidelines for tourism management of sites such as the Tramuntana Mountains.

This summer there were numerous issues with regard to overcrowding in the Tramuntana. This is a reason for Unesco seeking to regulate in order to protect natural areas that are subject to pressure from visitors.

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Icomos has a committee of tourism specialists. The vice-president of this committee is Tomeu Deyà, formerly the manager of the Fomento del Turismo (Mallorca Tourist Board) and the director of the Tramuntana World Heritage Consortium. He says that Unesco and Icomos promote the "proper tourist use" of World Heritage Sites, visits to which must be available to everyone but which also require appropriate conservation and preservation. "The main problem is that we often find that there is an inadequate tourism strategy or a complete lack of one."

He believes that the charter represents "a great opportunity" for World Heritage Sites and trusts that the authorities in Mallorca will adopt it for the benefit of both the island population and visitors.

Deyà adds that the Council of Mallorca is currently working on a law for the Tramuntana. Together with the charter, this is indicative of a need to be "proactive in tourism management, as this is key to addressing important issues such as human carrying capacity". The charter contains principles that highlight heritage protection, participation in decision-making. strategic planning, climate change and everything related to sustainability.