Blue Flag Beaches in South Africa
Did you know?
The Blue Flag programme is active in over 42 countries around the world - and there are now almost 4 000 official Blue Flag beaches.
Blue Flag beaches in South Africa are a very real feather in our tourism cap. To date, there are 36 beaches that have been awarded full Blue Flag status, and several others are in the pilot phase.
Conceived in France in 1985, the Blue Flag programme is a recognised international accreditation initiative that acknowledges excellence in maintaining the highest standards of environmental management, safety, services and amenities.
South Africa was the first country, outside of Europe, to introduce the Blue Flag programme in November 2001. Locally, the initiative has grown from just 3 beaches in the first year to 36 beaches in the 12th year of the programme.
Beaches with full Blue Flag status for 2012/2013 include:
Bikini Beach, Cape Town
Muizenberg Beach, Cape Town
Mnandi Beach, Cape Town
Strandfontein Beach, Cape Town
Camps Bay, Cape Town
Clifton, Cape Town
Llandudno, Cape Town
Keurboomstrand, Plettenberg Bay
Robberg Beach, Plettenberg Bay
Boknes Beach, Sunshine Coast
Grotto Beach, Hermanus
Hartenbos Beach, Mossel Bay
Hawston Beach, near Hermanus
Hobie Beach, Port Elizabeth
Kariega Main Beach, Kenton-on-Sea
Kellys Beach, Port Alfred
Kleinmond Beach, Overberg
Lucien Beach, KwaZulu-Natal South Coast
Margate Beach, KwaZulu-Natal South Coast
Marina Beach, KwaZulu-Natal South Coast
Trafalgar Beach, KwaZulu-Natal South Coast
Umzumbe, KwaZulu-Natal South Coast
Ramsgate Beach, KZN South Coast
Robberg 5 Beach, Plettenberg Bay
Santos Beach, Mossel Bay
Witsand, at the mouth of the Breede River
The beaches have achieved world-class standards during the past season and have been adjudicated by both a South African and an International Blue Flag Jury to meet the standards of excellence set out for Blue Flag beaches. Blue Flag beaches are awarded seasonally, and can be withdrawn at short notice should qualifying criteria not be fulfilled.
Locally, the programme is run by WESSA (The Wildlife and Environment Society of South Africa) in participation with municipal authorities. The Blue Flag iniatitive contributes to the aims of the White Paper on Sustainable Coastal Development.
The website is extremely informative and offers information on each beach's location, number of lifeguards, parking, average water temperature, special birds or animals that can be seen, and facilities.