It’s a first. Reservations to access, on Sunday, two coves in Marseille, opened on Thursday June 23 on the site of the Calanques National Park, which this summer limits the frequentation of these fragile Mediterranean natural spaces.

“The creek of Sugiton and Fallen Stones is the victim of a very marked soil erosion phenomenon due to overcrowding. This phenomenon threatens the landscapes we love so much and biodiversity,” says the Calanques National Park on its website.

To “protect the calanque”, access to the tiny beaches of Sugiton and Fallen Stones and their immediate surroundings will therefore be limited to 400 visitors per day, compared to the usual 2,500 in the heart of summer, on Sunday June 26 and July 3, then daily from July 10 to August 21.

Reservations, free and limited to five people per file, can be made from three days before the desired date and until 6 p.m. the day before, on the Calanques National Park website or application. Children under 3 do not need a reservation. They are impossible on site and on the same day.

Fine of 68 euros

Since mid-May, the Park has been engaged in a vast communication campaign, by way of posters but also on social networks, to inform the public of these new booking methods, a first in a French national park.

Agents will be present throughout the summer along the access path to the calanque, which winds through the scrubland, to inform visitors of the need to have a visitor’s permit before they reach the QR code checkpoints.

The reservation system, tested for the first time this summer by the Calanques National Park, may change. “We want to believe that a large part of the public is sensitive to the fact that we want to preserve the environment,” one of the park officials said in mid-May.

The objective is to “limit the erosion of the pine forest, protect the soil and maintain the capacity for renewal of this mythical landscape”, he added. And thus avoid “an irreversible process”, while “renaturation can take several centuries”. In the event of a check in the area subject to reservation, people who do not have a ticket will be fined 68 euros.