Blue Flag Beaches

Downings Blue Flag Beach
Downings Blue Flag Beach

Summer's here - Visit and enjoy Donegal's wonderful beaches

The Donegal coastline is over 1,000km long and has 192km of beaches, with 13 Blue Flag beaches and 5 Green Coast awarded beaches you will be spoiled for choice.

The Blue Flag is one of the world’s most recognised eco-labels and only beaches that meet specific criteria relating to water quality, beach management, environmental information and safety services achieve this accolade. As a pre-requisite the bathing water at Blue Flag beaches must meet the highest standards of bathing water quality. The Green Coast award acknowledges beaches that have a clean environment, excellent water quality and good beach management. They may not have the built infrastructure required to meet the criteria set out for Blue Flag status however they are exceptional places to visit and enjoy our rich coastal heritage and diversity.

During the summer season the Council oversees the management of the Blue Flag beaches and provides a full-time lifeguard service at all Blue Flag beaches during July and August.  The Council also works closely with a number of local community groups and a major part of this work is keeping the beaches free from litter during the summer months.

A number of ECO beach days are also currently being run in association with local Family Resource Centres that are located close to a Blue Flag beach. As part of their summer camps the children get to experience their local beach, have fun and learn about the beach environment and how we must look after it. These days are great fun and have been a great success so far this year.

The Wild Atlantic Way promotional campaign will see an increase in visitor numbers to the Donegal coastline and is a fantastic advertisement for Donegal's beaches, as a number of Blue Flag and Green Coast beaches are Discovery Points along the route.

It is also great to see the large numbers flocking to the county's beaches over the recent spell of good weather but we do remind people that the beaches are a wonderful natural resource and to only leave their footprints behind.

For the future it would be wonderful to see improvements to infrastructure and in particular accessibility improvements for people of all abilities at a number of the county's beaches.