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General Information on Artificial Reefs and Marine Protected Areas

6 September , 2021

Based on the Strategy for the Creation of Artificial Reefs (AR) and within the framework of implementing the Operational Program “Sea 2014-2020”, the Department of Fisheries and Marine Research (DFMR) has, through Ministerial decrees, proceeded to establish six (6) Marine Protected Areas (MPA) in which Artificial Reefs (AR) have been placed. These areas extend from the coast to a depth of 50 meters and are located in Paralimni, Ayia Napa, Larnaca, Amathounta, “Dasoudi” of Limassol, and Geroskipou. Fishing with all fishing gear is prohibited in these areas.

The primary purpose of creating MPAs with ARs is the recovery of fish stocks and the protection of the marine environment, while also achieving other objectives such as public recreation, the attraction of diving tourism, the conduct of scientific research, public awareness for the protection of marine life and the marine environment in general, and the promotion of environmental education.

In the delineated MPA with AR, Ayia Napa also hosts the unique underwater museum MUSAN with special signage deemed necessary for safe navigation, monitoring, and facilitating public access.