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Turkey Shines as Global Leader in Blue Flag Beaches

Turkey Shines as Global Leader in Blue Flag Beaches

Last Updated on Mai 26, 2024 by Ideal Editor

Turkey Shines as Global Leader in Blue Flag Beaches

Turkey has once again secured its spot as the third-ranked country globally for Blue Flag beaches, proudly boasting 567 Blue Flag-designated beaches this year. Mehmet Ersoy, Turkey’s Culture and Tourism Minister, shared the news on social media platform X, celebrating the nation’s consistent success in the Blue Flag awards. He emphasized that Turkey shines as global leader in Blue Flag Beaches and is determined to climb to the top position in the future.

What Are Blue Flag Awards?

The Blue Flag awards, overseen by the Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE) based in Copenhagen, Denmark, recognize beaches that meet high standards of cleanliness and safety. This prestigious title is a testament to the quality and environmental standards maintained by the awarded beaches.

Turkey’s Progress and Commitment

Minister Ersoy highlighted the government’s ongoing efforts to increase the number of Blue Flag beaches. This year, 16 additional beaches in Turkey earned the Blue Flag status, reflecting the country’s commitment to enhancing its coastal areas.

“Blue Flags suit our beaches very well. “This year, our country has proudly been awarded the Blue Flag for 567 beaches, 27 marinas, 18 tourism boats, and nine individual yachts,” Ersoy emphasized.

Global Rankings

Currently, Spain holds the top spot for the most Blue Flag beaches, followed by Greece in second place. Turkey proudly ranks third, with Italy and France trailing in fourth and fifth places, respectively.

Regional Highlights: Antalya Leads the Way

Antalya remains Turkey’s leading province for Blue Flag beaches, with an impressive 233 beaches awarded this designation, including Alanya. Other notable provinces include Mugla with 112 Blue Flag beaches and Izmir with 64.

New Blue Flag beaches have been added this year across various provinces, including Istanbul, Balikesir, Aydın, Antalya, Mugla, Izmir, Canakkale, Tekirdag, Bursa, Kirklareli, and Yalova. Despite this growth, some provinces such as Sakarya, Duzce, and Edirne, which were on the list last year, did not have any new additions.

A Legacy of Environmental Commitment

The Blue Flag program in Turkey began in 1993, following the European Union’s designation of 1987 as the Year of the Environment. The initiative aims to protect public health and promote environmental education and awareness.

Blue Flag beaches must meet 33 strict criteria, while marinas are assessed on 38 criteria, tourism boats on 51, and individual yachts on four criteria along with 16 behaviour rules. These include regular water quality analysis, appropriate wastewater treatment, protection of sensitive natural areas, availability of lifeguards and first aid equipment, emergency plans, facilities for the disabled, waste separation, and environmental education and information. Marinas and tourism boats are also evaluated based on corporate social responsibility and public engagement.

Looking Ahead

Turkey’s impressive track record and continued dedication to improving and expanding its Blue Flag beaches demonstrate its commitment to environmental excellence and tourism quality. As the country strives for the top spot, its beautiful and well-maintained beaches will undoubtedly continue to attract visitors from around the world.

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