Metal Detecting in Spain
Information about the law apertaining to Spain can be obtained from the NCMD site listed on the Useful sites page or take this link direct to the relevant pages.
Spanish Law re Metal Detecting
We all know of detectorists going to Spain who take their metal detectors with them, to "do" the beaches. Most of them don't seem to have any problems, but they could!
If you consult with the Spanish Tourist Office in London their general information sheet states "The use of metal detectors is not allowed unless an import license for the detector has previously been issued. Further enquiries should be made to the Spanish Commercial Office. The Commercial Office in turn will provide the following info (in brief):
Because the use of metal detectors inherantly involves the finding of national heritage/archaeological/treasure trove items anything found by this method of recovery could be covered by the relevant law (Historical Heritage) of 25/06/1985 & Royal Decree of 10/01/1986. It would then be necessary to comply with the complex proceedures outlined in these enactments, making it highly unlikely that any item discovered could be removed from Spain. The consent if given can take several months and if of historical/artistic interest it would be unlikely.
Basically they are saying anything found should in theory go through the appropriate assessment, even current coinage!
There is further legislation unrelated to the historical /cultural aspect which could cause a detectorist problems. The metal detector being used may not comply with radiation safeguard legislation.
Finally if this hasn't put you off. There have be complaints from local Naval authorities that use of Metal Detectors interferes with electronic communications.
These problems relate to both land and beach detecting in Spain.
The official advise therefore, is that is preferable NOT to use metal detectors in Spain.