Santorini Bans ‘Fat Tourists’ From Riding Donkeys

Santorini donkeysHelp The Santorini Donkeys/Facebook

Officials in Santorini have now banned ‘fat tourists’ from riding donkeys. 

The popular cruise destination is often awash with tourists, with up to 1,200 visitors a day arriving on cruise ships between May and October.

Many tourists opt to go on a donkey ride on the island, but now there is a restriction on how heavy you can be to hitch a ride.

According to 9Gag, the country’s Ministry of Rural Development and Food has published a new set of regulations stating donkeys should not carry any loads heavier than 100kg (around 15st) in Santorini.

Even Donkeys and Ponies need their Annual check up! Innoculations, teeth and hooves!

Posted by Help the Santorini Donkeys on Saturday, 6 October 2018

It adds donkeys should be given a reasonable amount of appropriate food and fresh drinking water and that they should not worrk long hours with ill-fitting saddles.

Earlier this year, a spokesperson for the Help the Santorini Donkeys charity spoke about the awful conditions donkeys are forced to work.

They said:

The obese and overweight tourists, combined with the lack of shade and water as well as the sheer heat and 568 cobbled steps, is what is causing such a problem.

There should be a weight restriction. With donkeys it is should be no more than 50kg, but how would that be imposed and who would be there to make sure that happened?

Now they’re having to resort to using cross-bred mules, because the donkeys just aren’t strong enough.

Christina Kaloudi moved to Santorini 10 years ago, and set up the Santorini Animal Welfare Association. She explained that cruise ships are bringing ever more overweight tourists from places like America, Russia and the UK.

Christina explained how the new regulations will still allow donkey rides, but with less harm to the donkeys:

We don’t want to stop the locals making a living or using donkeys on the steps but to look after them in a fair and humane way.

Hopefully the donkeys will all get the appropriate care they deserve!

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