The bizarre local laws you need to know when travelling to these 14 countries

Countries around the world all have their own unique customs, with many having strict laws in place for travellers' safety.

Countries around the world all have their own unique customs
Countries around the world all have their own unique customs

If you are heading to one of the following popular destinations this year, have identified 14 of the most unusual international laws to be aware of to avoid facing a hefty fine.

In Florence it is an offence to eat or drink while sitting on church steps or within a church courtyard. The same law applies to eating near any public buildings.
Feeding the pigeons on the streets of San Francisco is a big no. If you are caught doing so, you could be landed with a hefty fine.
It is an offence to bring Bibles into the Maldives. Public observance of any religion apart from Islam is prohibited.
Drivers in France are legally required to carry a breathalyser in their car. If you are caught without the gadget you will be given a fine.
Any public display of affection, including kissing, holding hands and hugging, must be avoided in the United Arab Emirates. If you break the law, you could end up behind bars.
It is against the law to wear swimwear on the streets of Barcelona. Holidaymakers should reserve their bikini and trunks for the beach only and cover up when they leave.
Wearing high heels at the site of certain ancient monuments in Greece is illegal, as it may cause damage and threaten preservation efforts.


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Stepping on Baht - Thai currency - is illegal in Thailand because it has the likeness of the Thai royal family on it. So keep your cash in your pocket.
Swearing is banned in St Kitts, so if you are caught using a profanity in public you could get arrested. Keep it clean.
Chewing gum was banned in Singapore in 1992 in an effort to keep public spaces clean. The only exception is if you can prove chewing gum has therapeutic value.
In Portugal it is illegal to have a wee in the sea. Although how this law is governed is anyone's guess.


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Cyclists in Mexico must keep their feet firmly on the pedals, hands on the handlebars and eyes on the road. Failure to do so could land you with a fine.
Running out of fuel on the autobahn in Germany is illegal, as is walking on it. Travellers should be sure to keep their car topped up at all times.
In some apartment blocks in Switzerland residents are not allowed to flush the toilet after 10pm. Apparently it is too noisy for some residents living there.