Third Place for The World's Best Beaches Goes to...Turkey!
If you like to visit beaches that have been awarded the prestigious ‘Blue Flag’ award, and you’ve done both Spain & Greece, then Turkey is next with 519 beaches which have been deemed safe, clean and of the highest quality.
One of the world’s most recognised voluntary awards for beaches, the ‘Blue Flag’ is only given to those that have met & maintained a series of strict environmental, educational, safety and accessibility criteria, and just because a flag is awarded one year, there’s no guarantee that it will keep it’s status the following year.
Not only are beaches put under scrutiny, but also Marina’s & sustainable boating tourism operators can apply, and with the announcement of the 2021 results, 22 of Turkey’s Marina’s, six yachts and 10 tourism boats were rewarded with the ‘Blue Flag’ label.
Panoramic view of Antalya seacoast
Antalya offers most blue flag beaches in Turkey
Murat Kurum who is Turkey’s Environment and Urbanization Minister was very pleased with the result, especially given that there were 19 more beaches rewarded this year, on top of the 500 that retained their status from 2020. He commented that ‘We have been working extremely hard, collecting 85,000 tons of marine litter with Zero Waste Blue. There are 163 waste reception facilities and we ensure all waste is safely removed from our ships. We respond immediately to possible pollution and deal with any accidents swiftly and appropriately from 364 coastal facilities’.
The newly awarded beaches are located on both the Aegean & Mediterranean coasts and the highly popular region of Antalya offers the most ‘Blue Flag’ beaches in Turkey, with the south western Mugla province a close second and Western Izmir following in third. Mustafa Ergiydiren who is the Blue Flag Co-ordinator for the Foundation for Environmental Education in Turkey was also keen to point out that ‘Blue Flags’ had also been awarded on beaches along the Black Sea coast as well, with the Konyaalti area now having 10 beaches that are deemed of the highest quality.
Palamutbuku, Datca, Mugla
As well as the International Jury carrying out yearly checks to determine whether a beach, Marina or Boat company meets the eligibility and should qualify for ‘Blue Flag’ status, Turkey also has its own committee who do spot checks and surprise inspections throughout the year to ensure standards are continually kept high.
Murat Kurum’s final word was that ‘Our goal for 2023 is to be the world champion’.
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