7 May, 2024 @ 16:59
1 min read

These three beaches in Spain’s Andalucia have been awarded the prestigious blue flag for the first time

THREE beaches in Andalucia have been awarded prestigious blue flag status for the first time ever. 

The sought-after award is only given to beaches with clean water, great services and plenty of safety measures. 

Now, Spain has 638 recognised beaches, reaffirming its place as the country with the most blue flags. 

The country has been at the top of the charts for 30 years and Valencia leads the way, with 159 beaches on the list. 

It is closely followed by Andalucia, with 156 flags, eight of which were gained this year. 

READ MORE: Spain’s Marbella leads the Andalucian blue flag awards and proudly flies eleven flags this summer

El Toyo was recognised for the first time by the Blue Flag project.
Photo: Turismo Almeria

For three of the beaches, it was the first time they have been recognised by the Foundation for Environmental Education’s programme. 

These include: El Toyo (Almeria), Cambriles (Gualchos-Granada) and El Encinarejo (Andujar-Jaen). 

In Spain, the project is led by the Environmental Education and Consumer Association (Adeac). 

They published the new flag awards on Tuesday, May 7, revealing the country had gained 18 more flags compared to 2023. 

READ MORE: Andalucia kicks-off the summer with all-time record for number of blue flags

El Encinarejo in Jaen is a beautiful picnic spot and pristine beach.
Photo: Google Reviews

Some 11 of these were given to beaches, while five were for ports and two for tourist boats. 

Spain holds the top spot worldwide for number of blue flags, followed by Greece and Turkey. 

However, Spain falls to third place when it comes to its ports, following Holland and France. 

Cambriles beach in Granada was also given the prestigious award.
Photo: Google Reviews

Together with Portugal, the Iberian peninsula is home to 23% of the world’s blue flags. 

In her first act as Minister for Tourism, Rosario Sanchez Grau emphasised the importance of protecting Spain’s coast, saying: “We are a world leader in tourism and we should also lead the way for sustainability.”

Of the 694 beaches put forward this year, 91% were granted a blue flag. 

Most commonly, they are not granted or are taken away due to poor water quality and a failure to comply with the Coastal Law (Ley de Costas).

Normally, beaches do not comply with the law due to overcrowding or the presence of unauthorised facilities.

READ MORE: 10 new Blue Flag beaches in Spain for 2023

Yzabelle Bostyn

After spending much of her childhood in Andalucia and adulthood between Barcelona and Latin America, Yzabelle has settled in the Costa del Sol to put her NCTJ & Journalism Masters to good use. She is particularly interested in travel, vegan food and has been leading the Olive Press Nolotil campaign. Have a story? email [email protected]

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This region in Spain has the highest number of prestigious Blue Flag beaches - after adding three new winners
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This region in Spain has the highest number of prestigious Blue Flag beaches – after adding three new winners

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