Everything you need to know about Blue Flag Beaches

What is a Blue Flag beach?

A beach is awarded a Blue Flag certification by the Foundation for Environmental Education when it meets the required environmental standards.

How is a beach certified?

Water Quality 

Beaches that are certified Blue Flag have to comply with standards for excellent bathing water quality and have no industrial or sewage related discharge that could affect the beach in any way.

Safety and Services 

To meet the safety guidelines, Blue Flag beaches must have an adequate number of lifeguards with first aid equipment readily available. The beach area must also be patrolled regularly.

Environmental Education

A minimum of 5 environmental education activities must be offered and beaches should display information relating to the ecosystems at the beach in order for beaches to receive their certification.

Environmental Management 

A beach must have a committee to manage environmental systems at the beach and conduct regular audits of the beach facilities. Bins and waste disposal units should also be maintained and cleaned regularly.

Which place has the most Blue Flag beaches?

Spain as a nation has the most Blue Flag beaches, but in terms of holiday hotspots  – Antalya in Turkey is way out front with a huge 194 certified beaches. Portugal’s Algarve has 84 Blue Flag beaches, while Costa Blanca, Cyprus and Majorca round off the top 5 with 62, 57 and 31 certified beaches. Our top 10 destinations with the most Blue Flag beaches looks like this:

Everything you need to know about Blue Flag beaches
Will Blue Flag beaches make my holiday better?

Yes! Blue Flag beaches have been certified because they meet certain criteria and as a result, they make up some of the most stunning beaches in the world. Blue Flag beaches are guaranteed to be clean and well-maintained, offer safe swimming opportunities and have better accessibility than non-Blue Flag beaches. The beach committee also work hard to protect and preserve the beach and its surrounding areas.

Are there Blue Flag beaches in the UK?

If you want to experience a Blue Flag beach a little closer to home, you’ll be pleased to know that the UK has  68 Blue Flag beaches for the 2017-2018 year. The South West is the region with the most with 26 certified beaches, followed by the South East with 14 and the East of England with 12.  


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Written on 9th April 2018 by

Joshua Carry-James


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