Turkey third in world with 397 blue flagged beaches
Turkey has been chosen third in the world in 2014 with its 397 blue-flagged beaches, according to the Chamber of Shippingâs (DTO) Ä°zmir Branch.
In 2012, the number of blue-flagged beaches in Turkey was 355, marinas 19 and yachts 13, while in 2013 the number of blue-flagged beaches numbered 383, marinas 21 and yachts 13.
An official from the DTO in Ä°zmir said âit was a success for Turkey to be chosen thirdâ from a total of 70 countries, which saw Spain topping the list with 573 beaches and Greece in second with 407.
The blue flag is a certification awarded by the Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE) to countries that have beaches and marinas that meet its safety and environmental standards.
Due to the positive reputation associated with the blue flags, locals and international tourists tend to be attracted to blue flag beaches.
These flags are renewed every year and during their annual checks the sea water is tested every two weeks, lifeguards and security measures are monitored by the authorities. Environmental protection factors also contribute to the granting of the blue flags.
In Turkey, Antalya province has the highest number of blue-flagged beaches with 197; MuÄla is next with 89 blue-flagged beaches, followed by Ä°zmir with 43.