Battle for the Coastline

Around the world, coastal communities struggle to retain balance over their border world. They battle the forces that would construct fences and parcel out the continents’ edges to the highest bidder: for a fabulous view, for profit, for security.

For the next few weeks, travel to South Africa, Japan, Israel, Canada, Myanmar, India, Scotland, Cuba, Australia, and even Ancient Rome with Hakai Magazine as our writers unpack clashes around the globe. The stories you will encounter are at once different, but also the same: a battle for control.

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Who Controls the Coast?

Squabbling over some of the world’s most valuable territory, the shoreline, is ultimately a very human thing to do.

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How Ancient Rome’s 1% Hijacked the Beach

The rich, the poor, and the battle for the Bay of Naples.


The Right to Roam

Scotland’s liberal access laws make life a whole lot better for everyone.

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Vancouver’s Other Housing Crisis

Clinging to the liveaboard life in one of the world’s most expensive cities.

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Okinawa’s Elders Rage Against the Marines

The US military finds a surprising adversary on a small, strategic island in the East China Sea.


Infographic: Get the Hell Off My Beach

Coastal access laws around the world.

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The Real Estate Apartheid

In a South African fishing village, market forces maintain segregation long after the old race-based laws have gone.

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Will Clashing Visions End the Harmony in Haifa, Israel?

How redeveloping neighborhoods in Haifa threatens its unique reputation for tolerance in a divisive country.

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Havana: Some Assembly Required

A communist city struggles to lure foreign money and rebuild its failing infrastructure without sacrificing its revolutionary roots.

Photo Essay

The Big (Coastal) Squeeze

Myanmar’s Ayeyarwady Delta shoreline is at risk of getting squeezed out.

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The Ultra Mega Powerless Take On the Ultra Mega Power Plants

In India’s Gulf of Kutch, a migratory community of fishers tries to maintain access to the coastline that sustains them.

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Crocodiles Rising

In the Northern Territory of Australia, policymakers and biologists managed the impossible—making the benefits of living with a booming population...