The Blue Flag is an accolade awarded by the Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE) to
beaches, marinas and sustainable boating tourism operators.
This year, Portugal was awarded an outstanding 432 Blue Flags including 394 beaches, 17 marinas
and 21 boats.
The Algarve claimed 91 coveted Blue Flags this year, up from 86 in 2022 – with 85 beaches, four
marinas and two tour boats receiving the prestigious award.
João Fernandes, President of the Algarve Tourism Board (RTA) commented, “These awards are the
acknowledgement of the work that has been carried out throughout the years in the 13 boroughs
with coastal beaches in the Algarve, be it through the investment in the gradual improvement of
beach conditions and the growing concern with the preservation of the quality of bathing waters.”
A Blue Flag is intended to show beachgoers that the beaches, marinas and boating tourism operators
that have been awarded the accolade have high environmental and safety standards. The Blue Flag
award was first introduced in 1987 across the European Union as part of the water quality standards
EU Water Framework Directive.
Top Algarve boroughs for Blue Flag beaches
The region’s top performer, awarded the highest number of Blue Flags – 26 (25 beaches and
Albufeira Marina) in the Algarve and the whole of Portugal.
• Loulé with 11 flags (10 beaches and Vilamoura Marina), Vila do Bispo (10), Portimão (six
beaches and Portimão marina) and Lagoa (six).
• Aljezur, Faro, Olhão, Tavira and Vila Real de Santo António follow with four beaches each,
while Lagos and Castro Marim (three each) and Silves (two) round off the Algarve award list.
The official Blue Flag website states: “In order to qualify for the Blue Flag, a series of stringent
environmental, educational, safety and accessibility criteria must be met and maintained.”
Check here where they are APDA