| GEO Amazing and Interesting|
| Building sandcastles banned in Italy|
| Updated at: 1118 PST, Sunday, July 04, 2010|
ROME: More than 150 "public security" laws have been introduced since Silvio Berlusconi, the prime minister, granted extra powers to local councils to help them crack down on crime and anti-social behaviour in Italy.
In the latest episode in the fight to maintain "public decorum", Vigevano, a town near Milan, this week slapped fines of €160 (£130) each on a young couple who dared to sit on the steps of a local monument.
"It was really hot, so we just sat down for a moment," said Giada Carnevale, 24. "The only other alternative in the piazza is to go to a bar but there they charge you €5 just for a drink. We were just chatting – we weren't eating or drinking or smoking."
But the town's mayor justified the fine, saying the council spent precious time and money each month cleaning up after idlers on the steps.
Passionate Italians caught kissing in a moving car in the town of Eboli, south of Naples, face a €500 fine.
The coastal town of Eraclea, near Venice, prohibits the building of sandcastles on the beaches because they can "obstruct the passage" of people strolling along the strand.
If you are caught having a smoke on the white beaches of Oristano, in Sardinia, you can be hit with a €360 fine.
On the island of Capri, wearing noisy wooden clogs is banned.
In Bergamo, you can be fined €333 for feeding the pigeons, while Venice punishes the same offence with a €500 penalty. The town of Cesena on the Adriatic Coast extends the ban to feeding feral cats.
The Italian press has slammed what they claim is a return to the bureaucratic straightjacket of the Mussolini era.
"Kisses, clogs and beach balls – Italy, the country where everything is forbidden," railed a headline in La Stampa on Friday.