Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Guest Post - Blue Flag Beaches in Malta

Last year Malta only boasted two Blue Flag beaches, but in 2012 the beautiful beaches of this Mediterranean island found the recognition they deserved.

From the popular family beaches in the north to the secluded, hidden coves in the west, Malta’s beaches each have their own character and unique attractions.

The beaches of Malta, and its sister island Gozo, vary in size, the facilities available and rocky or sandy shores. However, all the shores are stunning examples of a Mediterranean escape. The beaches either have soft sands or rocky shores, but you’ll always find somewhere to sunbathe on holidays to Malta and the clear, warm sea is perfect for snorkeling and scuba-diving opportunities.

Discover the Blue Flag beaches in Malta and make the most of this beautiful Mediterranean island:

1. St. George’s Beach, MaltaSt George’s beach is in the lively resort of St Julian’s on the central east coast of Malta. The small cove is lined with al fresco restaurants and cafes, has first-rate amenities and is wonderful for swimming or snorkeling in the warm Mediterranean Sea.
St George’s Beach Facilities – Water Sports, Disabled Access, Lifeguards

2. Mellieha Bay Beach, MaltaMellieha Bay is the longest sandy beach in Malta. The gentle sloping shore and safe, clear waters make it a perfect destination for families with small children. It was awarded the Beach of Quality Award in 2011 for its facilities and cleanliness. Behind Mellieha Bay beach is the Ghadira Nature Reserve – a wonderful natural habitat that’s home to lizards, marsh birds and small mammals.
Mellieha Bay Facilities – Water Sports, Disabled Access, Shops, Restaurants

3. Ghajn Tuffieha, MaltaGhajn Tuffieha Bay on the east coast of Malta was recently awarded a Blue Flag as, although it’s isolated, it has many amenities including parking and lifeguards. Ghajn Tuffieha Bay is quieter than its neighbour Golden Bay, and its red-gold sand and clear blue waters make it a stunning beach to visit in Malta. If you have time, stay to watch the breath-taking sunsets over the ocean.
Ghajn Tuffieha Facilities – Parking, Lifeguards, Restaurants at Golden Bay Beach

4. Bugibba Perched Beach, MaltaBugibba is Malta’s most popular resort, with a predominately rocky coastline. Bugibba Perched Beach has been created with imported sand, perfect for sunbathing and deep, clear water perfect for swimming and snorkeling. The sandy beach ledge is perched above sea-level with access to the water possible by ladders and bridges.
Facilities – Disabled Access, Shops

5. Qawra Point, MaltaThere is a small area of sand, popular with families, found at Qawra Point, found at the end of the Qawra and Bugibba coastline in the north east of Malta. The small beach is now managed by the Maltese Authorities but other facilities are a short walk away in the resorts of Qawra and Salina Bay.
Qawra Point Facilities – NO DISABLED ACCESS

6. Ramla Bay, Gozo – The red sands and bright azure waters of Ramla Bay are a favourite destination for locals and tourists on Gozo holidays.  Ramla Bay is the largest beach on Gozo Island and is recognizable by the statue of the Virgin Mary in the middle of the beach.
Ramla Bay Facilities – Disabled Access, Lifeguards, Shops, Cafes

What are the Criteria for Blue Flag?
You may have noticed the term ‘Blue Flag’ thrown around when you’re looking at beaches in the UK, Europe or all over the world.
Blue Flags are awarded to recreational beaches that have the following:
--          Excellent Water-Quality
--          Exceptional Cleanliness
--          Environmental Management
--          Good Maintenance of Toilet Facilities
--          Control Measures for Dogs and Other Domestic Animals
--          Supply of Drinking water
--          Wheelchair Access
--          Safety Management (i.e. Lifesaving Equipment, Lifeguards, First Aid Kit)
--          Map and General Information about the Beach

So if the beach you’re visiting has a Blue Flag you know it’s going to be a good one! Blue Flags aren’t given out easily either; beaches must also provide environmental education activities on the beach and the Blue Flag is judged on the previous summer season.

About the Author: Stephanie is the destination expert for Malta at lowcostholidays.com – providers of all inclusive Malta hotels.


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