Italy: Two tourist kicked out of Venice for surfing in city’s canal

Two people were spotted surfing in a canal in Venice, Italy and the mayor was not happy about it. In a Facebook post, Mayor Luigi Brugnaro shared a video of the surfers, calling them idiots and saying he would buy dinner for whoever finds them.

Several other videos of the two surfers, cruising through Venice’s Grand Canal, have been shared across social media. In one video, a surfer falls off the board and swims towards it.

In a later comment on the video, Brugnaro said the two surfers had been identified and their boards had been seized.

The surfers were tourists and they were fined for endangering the safety of navigation along the canal, local media reported. They were kicked out of the city, and could face criminal proceedings for allegedly damaging the image of Venice, according to local newspaper Il Gazzettino.

The boards they were using appear to be so-called foil boards, which are electric surfboards that hover above the water. Surfers do not need waves to use them, hence the two tourists were able to surf on them in the waveless canal.

Swimming and all water sports like surfing and canoeing are not permitted in Venice’s canals, which are famous waterways with heavy boat traffic.