Earlier today, An Taisce - the National Trust for Ireland - announced the International Blue Flag and Green Coast Award recipients for 2022.

The Blue Flag is one of the world's most recognised eco-labels. In total, eight countries operate the programme globally and more than 5,000 sites and tourism boats will be awarded the prestigious Blue Flag this year.

This year's awards were presented by Malcolm Noonan TD, Minister of State, with responsibility for Heritage and Electoral Reform at a ceremony at Curracloe Beach, Co. Wexford.

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Blue Flag
2022 marks the 35th year that beaches and marinas have been awarded the Blue Flag here in Ireland, and the 95 beaches and marinas being awarded is the highest annual total to date.

The areas that have achieved this accolade must adhere to specific criteria related to water quality, information provision, environmental education, safety and site management.

Seven Irish beaches that made the cut this year but were not awarded in 2021 are: Trá Inis Oírr (Main Beach) in County Galway; Fountainstown and Youghal Front Strand in County Cork; Balcarrick, Donabate and Rush, South Beach in Fingal; Ballybunnion North Beach in Kerry and Ballymoney North Beach, in County Wexford.

Furthermore, 79 of the 83 beaches awarded in 2021 retained Blue Flag Status for the 2022 bathing season.

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Green Coast Award
The Green Coast Award recognises beaches for their clean environment, excellent water quality and natural beauty.

These sites are known to be exceptional places to visit, and an important aspect of the Green Coast Awards is the involvement of Clean Coasts groups of which there are currently over 1,800 comprised of tens of thousands of volunteers nationwide.

This year, an incredible 62 beaches in Ireland received the Green Coast Award for the 2022 Bathing Season.

Highlights:

  • Ballynamona Beach in County Cork was awarded a Green Coast Award for the first time this year.
  • Cork is the county with the most Green Coast Award beaches once again in 2022 with 15 in total.
  • Mornington in Meath and Oysterhaven in Cork, both last awarded in 2020, have been awarded for the 2022 season.
  • Kilfarrassey in Waterford (last awarded in 2018) and Balcarrick Beach, Donabate in Fingal, (last awarded in 2016) have both been awarded for the upcoming season.

Blue Flag & Green Coast

Five stunning beaches in Ireland have managed to secure both a Blue Flag a Green Coast Award for the 2022 season, they are:

  1. Balcarrick Beach, Donabate in Fingal
  2. Baile an Sceilg (Ballinskelligs) in Kerry
  3. Salthill in Galway City
  4. Silverstrand in Galway City
  5. Trá Inis Oirr in Galway

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Blue Flag Beaches 2022:

  1. Clare County Council Ballycuggeran
  2. Clare County Council Cappagh Pier, Kilrush
  3. Clare County Council Fanore
  4. Clare County Council Kilkee
  5. Clare County Council Lahinch
  6. Clare County Council Mountshannon, Lough Derg
  7. Clare County Council Spanish Point
  8. Clare County Council White Strand Doonbeg
  9. Clare County Council White Strand Miltown Malbay
  10. Cork County Council Barley Cove
  11. Cork County Council Fountainstown
  12. Cork County Council Garretstown
  13. Cork County Council Garrylucas, White Strand
  14. Cork County Council Inchydoney East Beach
  15. Cork County Council Inchydoney West Beach
  16. Cork County Council Owenahincha, Little Island Strand
  17. Cork County Council Redbarn
  18. Cork County Council Tragumna
  19. Cork County Council Youghal, Claycastle
  20. Cork County Council Youghal, Front Strand
  21. Donegal County Council Culdaff
  22. Donegal County Council Bundoran
  23. Donegal County Council Carrickfinn
  24. Donegal County Council Downings
  25. Donegal County Council Fintra
  26. Donegal County Council Killahoey
  27. Donegal County Council Marble Hill
  28. Donegal County Council Murvagh
  29. Donegal County Council Naran
  30. Donegal County Council Portsalon
  31. Donegal County Council Rossnowlagh
  32. Donegal County Council Stroove
  33. Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council Killiney
  34. Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council Seapoint
  35. Fingal County Council Balcarrick, Donabate
  36. Fingal County Council Portmarnock, Velvet Strand Beach
  37. Fingal County Council Rush, South Beach
  38. Galway City Council Salthill Beach
  39. Galway City Council Silverstrand Beach
  40. Galway County Council An Trá Mór, Coill Rua, Indreabhán
  41. Galway County Council Bathing Place at Portumna
  42. Galway County Council Cill Mhuirbhigh, Inis Mór
  43. Galway County Council Loughrea Lake
  44. Galway County Council Trá an Dóilín, An Ceathrú Rua
  45. Galway County Council Trá Inis Oírr (Main Beach)
  46. Kerry County Council Baile an Sceilg (Ballinskelligs)
  47. Kerry County Council Ballybunion North Beach
  48. Kerry County Council Ballybunion South Beach
  49. Kerry County Council Ballyheigue
  50. Kerry County Council Banna Strand
  51. Kerry County Council Doire Fhíonáin (Derrynane)
  52. Kerry County Council Fenit
  53. Kerry County Council Fionntrá (Ventry)
  54. Kerry County Council Inch
  55. Kerry County Council Kells
  56. Kerry County Council Maharabeg
  57. Kerry County Council Rossbeigh, White Strand
  58. Kerry County Council White Strand, Caherciveen
  59. Louth County Council Clogherhead
  60. Louth County Council Port, Lurganboy
  61. Louth County Council Shelling Hill/Templetown
  62. Mayo County Council Dooega Beach, Achill Island
  63. Mayo County Council Dugort Beach, Achill Island
  64. Mayo County Council Elly Bay, Belmullet
  65. Mayo County Council Golden Strand, Achill Island
  66. Mayo County Council Keel Beach, Achill Island
  67. Mayo County Council Keem Beach, Achill Island
  68. Mayo County Council Mullaghroe Beach, Belmullet
  69. Mayo County Council Mulranny Beach
  70. Mayo County Council Ross Beach, Killala
  71. Sligo County Council Rosses Point Beach
  72. Waterford City & County Council Ardmore Beach
  73. Waterford City & County Council Clonea Beach
  74. Waterford City & County Council Counsellors' Strand, Dunmore East
  75. Waterford City & County Council Dunmore Strand, Dunmore East
  76. Waterford City & County Council Tramore Beach
  77. Wexford County Council Ballinesker
  78. Wexford County Council Ballymoney North Beach
  79. Wexford County Council Carne
  80. Wexford County Council Curracloe
  81. Wexford County Council Morriscastle
  82. Wexford County Council Rosslare Strand
  83. Wicklow County Council Bray South Promenade
  84. Wicklow County Council Brittas Bay North
  85. Wicklow County Council Greystones South Beach

Blue Flag Marinas:

  1. Cork Kinsale Yacht Club
  2. Cork The Royal Cork Yacht Club Marina
  3. Clare Kilrush Marina
  4. Donegal Greencastle Marina
  5. Donegal Rathmullan Marina
  6. Kerry Fenit Marina
  7. Kerry Portmagee Seasonal Pontoon
  8. Westmeath Quigley's Marina, Killinure Point
  9. Wexford Kilmore Quay Marina
  10. Wexford New Ross Marina