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La Galite Archipelago (Tunisia)

Through the Protocol concerning Specially Protected Areas and Biological Diversity in the Mediterranean (SPA/BD Protocol), the Contracting Parties to the Barcelona Convention established the List of Specially Protected Areas of Mediterranean Importance (SPAMI's List) in order to promote cooperation in the management and conservation of natural areas, as well as in the protection of threatened species and their habitats. The conservation of the natural heritage is then the basic aim that must characterize the SPAMIs.


According to the provisions of the SPA/BD Protocol, SPAMIs may be established in the marine and coastal zones subject to the sovereignty or jurisdiction of the Parties and in areas situated partly or wholly on the high sea. The SPAMI List may include sites which:

  • are of importance for conserving the components of biological diversity in the Mediterranean;
  • contain ecosystems specific to the Mediterranean area or the habitats of endangered species;
  • are of special interest at the scientific, aesthetic, cultural or educational levels.


The SPA/BD Protocol provides the criteria for the choice of protected marine and coastal areas that could be included in the SPAMI List (Annex I of the SPA/BD Protocol) as well as the procedure and the steps to be followed with the view of including an area in the List (read more about the procedure).


According to the provisions of the SPA/BD Protocol, all the Parties to the Protocol are committed to respecting the protection and conservation measures defined in the proposal for inclusion.

SPAMIs in the Mediterranean

Download the 2020 updated map as PNG or PDF (high quality)

Since the 21st ordinary meeting of the Contracting Parties to the Barcelona Convention and its Protocols (Naples, Italy, December 2019) and the inclusion of 4 new areas, the SPAMI List includes 39 sites, among which one encompasses an area established on the high sea: the Pelagos Sanctuary for marine mammals.


Albania Lebanon
  • Karaburun Sazan National Marine Park
  • Palm Islands Nature Reserve
  • Tyre Coast Nature Reserve
Algeria Morocco
Cyprus Slovenia
  • Lara – Toxeftra Turtle Reserve
  • Landscape Park Strunjan
France Spain
France, Italy and Monaco


Download the SPAMI List (2020).

Read about the procedure for proposing an area for inclusion in the SPAMI List.





The designations employed and the presentation of material in this website do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Secretariat of the United Nations concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries.