How many of these did you know and what do you think is the strangest?
Towns and cities in some areas of Spain have passed some rather bizarre bylaws which prohibit activities that don’t seem that punishable.
Here’s a few of them..
No rug shaking
In Seville, it’s illegal to shake out clothes or carpets onto the street. Local bylaws also prohibit hanging “indecent” items from your washing lines, with fines reaching up to €3,000 for serious offences. The Spanish enclave of Ceuta in northern Africa also fines those who shake their clothes or rugs from balconies or in the street between €100 and €750.
No rice throwing at weddings
In 2007, the city of Cádiz in southern Spain banned the traditional Spanish custom of throwing rice at weddings, partly to stop guests getting injured after slipping on stray grains, but also to stop local pigeons and sparrows from copping a free feed and then ‘adorning’ churches and squares in their faeces.
No domino playing outdoors
Authorities in Seville are obviously quite picky about the rules they set as in 2014 they introduced a bylaw which banned dominoes and dice games in outdoor café areas.
Other banned actions included in this anti-noise legislation are unnecessary car engine revving, loud TVs in restaurant terraces, rolling beer barrels in the street, banging butane gas cylinders together and playing darts. Fines reportedly range from €300 to €300,000
No prostitution without road safety
Spain’s Prime Minister may have pledged to abolish prostitution but for some years now sex workers on the highway near Els Alamus near Lleida in Catalonia have to wear safety vests while on the job.
If they don’t, they are in breach of a 2004 law which states pedestrians on major highways and hard shoulders must wear the high visibility garments, or risk a fine of €40.
No sand castles
Authorities in the Tenerife municipalities of Arona and Arico decided to include in their 2009 beach conservation bylaws a ban on building large sand castles on their beaches.
How seriously this is policed we don’t know, but it was part of a push to keep their coastlines as pollution-free and natural as possible. Sand craftsmen who do want to show off their giant sand castles on these beaches will first have to request a municipal permit.
No mop on the balcony
Drying a mop outdoors may be the easiest way to stop it from stinking, but try doing this in the village of Villanueva de la Torre in Guadalajara (central Spain) and you may get a fine or at best a warning.
According to their local newspaper Nueva Alcarria, PSOE authorities in this municipality of 6,500 people introduced a prohibition on anyone having a mop on the terrace or balcony of their home, part of a decent cohabitation order that also banned dog barking at night and children playing in the street.
No begging if you have a dog
As bizarre as it may sound, begging is allowed in Madrid but not if you have a dog in your company, or worse still, if you use dogs to do the begging for you.
This 2018 animal protection bylaw aimed to crack down on organised crime groups which position dogs around the city, lie them down on a blanket next to a begging bowl and then leave them. Madrid authorities estimated these mafias could make anywhere between €400 a day from handouts from passers-by, so the fines can be stiff: up to €5,000.
No strange baby names
Like many countries, Spain has rules governing what people can name their children. Stalin and Mao are both fine, but Judas and Cain are not, and neither is Mandarina – which is the name of the fruit and therefore clearly not suitable for a human being. Try telling that to Gwyneth Paltrow.
No sleeping or sex inside a car
According to Spain’s Directorate General of Traffic, sleeping or carrying out any other activity which isn’t illegal inside a vehicle isn’t a finable offence as long as the car is properly parked and the act isn’t bothersome.
In the Basque city of Bilbao however, sleeping inside a car is a punishable offence and in Granada local authorities actually went to the trouble of passing a bylaw which banned sex inside a car.<p
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