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Halkidiki Beaches Take the Lead with Most Blue Flags in Greece

Ouranoupoli in Halkidiki, one of the 52 beaches with a Blue Flag this year.

Ouranoupoli in Halkidiki, one of the 52 beaches with a Blue Flag this year.

Halkidiki_Blue_Flag_01aFifty-two of Greece’s 430 beaches awarded for their quality are located in the Halkidiki peninsula in northern Greece, the Halkidiki Tourism Organization (HTO) said last week, demonstrating the region’s commitment to “responsible tourism”.

Ouranoupoli, Porto Carras, Armenistis, Kriopigi, Fourka, Nea Moudania and Sani are among the popular beaches in Halkidiki awarded for their cleanness, water quality, organization, safety and services, environmental management and protection.

Halkidiki Tourism Organization President Grigoris Tasios.

Halkidiki Tourism Organization President Grigoris Tasios.

Greece clinched third spot during the 1st 2016 Blue Flags Awards ceremony held at the Porto Carras Grand Resort in Halkidiki last week, boasting 430 beaches and nine marinas. Spain topped the list with 588 beaches and 100 marinas followed by Turkey with 444 beaches and 21 marinas.

Run by independent non-profit organization Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE), the Blue Flag Program labels beaches and marinas for their overall quality standards and certifies the best every summer. This year, 3,462 beaches and 660 marinas in 50 countries came under scrutiny. The event was held under the auspices of the Economy, Development and Tourism ministry and the HTO.

Halkidiki_Blue_Flag_04

Underlining the significance of sustainable practices, the HTO invites tourists to visit the region not only for its Blue Flag beaches and marinas, but also for its Green Key certified hotels, its NATURA 2000 network or natural landmarks and for the UNESCO World Heritage site of Mount Athos.

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