South Africa has been awarded 84 Blue Flag status sites for 2015, made up of beaches, marinas, boats as well as pilot status sites – all recognised for their excellence in the areas of cleanliness, safety, environmental standards and amenities.
Forty-nine Blue Flag sites have been listed in the Western Cape alone, with Cape Town laying claim to seven blue flag beaches in total – the highest number for any one city.
Despite the strong showing Vincent Shacks, Blue Flag Programme Leader, confirmed this year’s 39 beaches was a slip down from last year’s 49 confirmed Blue Flag beaches across South Africa.
South Africa was the first country outside Europe to be granted Blue Flag accreditation for its beaches back in 2001.
A remarkable 24 beaches have been on the programme for more than five consecutive years and two of these have been participating for all fifteen years that the programme has been running in the country.
South Africa’s best beaches
|Humewood Beach||Eastern Cape||Gold||15|
|Grotto Beach||Western Cape||Gold||15|
|Clifton 4th||Western Cape||Silver||12|
|Bikini Beach||Western Cape||Silver||12|
|Kelly’s Beach||Eastern Cape||Silver||11|
|Hawston Beach||Western Cape||Silver||10|
|Camps Bay Beach||Western Cape||Bronze||8|
|Muizenberg Beach||Western Cape||Bronze||8|
|Santos Beach||Western Cape||Bronze||7|
|Hartenbos Beach||Western Cape||Bronze||7|
|Robberg 5 Beach||Western Cape||Bronze||7|
|Kariega Beach||Eastern Cape||Bronze||7|
|Witsand Beach||Western Cape||Bronze||6|
|Silwerstroomstrand Beach||Western Cape||Bronze||5|
|Llandudno Beach||Western Cape||Bronze||5|
|Mnandi Beach||Western Cape||Bronze||5|
|Keurboomstrand Beach||Western Cape||Bronze||5|
While 49 Blue Flag sites are in the Western Cape, 19 are in KwaZulu-Natal and 16 in the Eastern Cape.
Cape Town Blue Flag beaches are:
- Bikini Beach
- Mnandi Beach
- Strandfontein Beach
- Llandudno Beach (December to January)
- Camps Bay Beach
- Clifton 4th Beach
- Silwerstroomstrand (December to January)
Fish Hoek, Seaforth, Muizenberg and Melkbosstrand beaches were awarded pilot Blue Flag status for the 2015/2016 summer season which means they will be considered for full Blue Flag status if certain criteria are met within a specified period of time.
The City of Cape Town confirmed it is planning to extend Blue Flag Status to these four beaches in order to bring the total number of Blue Flag beaches up to 11.
The Wildlife and Environment Society of South Africa (WESSA) awards the beaches blue flag status but stresses that participation in this international programme is voluntary.
The Blue Flag is an international accreditation awarded to beaches that display excellence through meeting 33 criteria covering four categories including: environmental education and information; water quality; environmental management; and safety and services.