spanish beaches ... paradise ...

spanish beaches

With over 4,000 kms of coastline packed with gorgeous spanish beaches, it is no wonder that the Spanish are such a happy race!

And what a choice of sands!

Golden sands ... white sands ... even the black sands of the Canary Islands!

Allergic to sand? Just plump for a resort with smooth, white pebbles!

Below, you will find information about the marvelous beaches of Spain along with the names and location of the numerous Spanish "costas".

Whether you seek a glamorous Mediterranean resort or a fairy-tale fishing village, there's surely something for you ...

spanish beaches - blue flag campaign

"Spanish beaches are the most environmentally healthy in Europe," says the Foundation for Environmental Education which has awarded the much-coveted Blue Flag to 450 of the country s beaches - more than any other participating country.

Leading the way within Spain itself is the Costa Blanca, which received 48 Blue Flag awards. Then came the Costa Dorada (37) and Mallorca (33).

The Blue Flag Campaign, which started in 1987, is owned and run by an independent, non-profit-making organization called the Foundation For Environmental Education - or FEE for short.

It is operated in 24 countries across Europe and South Africa by the national FEE-member organization.

The Campaign gives an exclusive, eco-label award - the Blue Flag - based on compliance with 27 criteria spread over four categories: water quality; environmental education and information; environmental management; and safety services.

The awards are made for one season only and if any of the categories are not fulfilled during the bathing season, or if conditions change over the season, the FEE withdraws the awards.

spanish beaches - sea safety flag

As can be seen from the above, the large majority of the coastal areas of Spain and their bathing waters are very safe and, in the busy summer months, you will normally find trained life guards.

Also, the International Sea Safety Condition Flag warning system is in force throughout the beaches of spain.

If you see a green flag flying, this shows that the sea is safe for entering. A yellow flag advises caution. The red flag - which doesn t appear very often - means that swimming is considered risky.

spanish beaches - names/locations of costas

Where are the 1,779 Spanish coastal bathing areas to be found?

On Spain s mainland, there are 16 different "costas".

You also have the beaches of the Balearic and Canary Islands.

Starting down south and moving in an anti-clockwise direction, the first costa you come across - on the south-west of the Peninsula - is the Costa de la Luz.

This leads on to the famous Costa del Sol, then to the Costa Tropical and the Costa de Almer a.

Heading round to the east of Spain, from south to north - as far as the French border - the spanish beaches are: Costa C lida, Costa Blanca, Costa de Valencia, Costa del Azahar, Costa Dorada, Costa de Garraf, Costa de Maresme and finally, the Costa Brava.

To the other (west) side of France - on Spain s northern coast - enjoy the Costa Vasca and the Costa Verde.

Finally, moving on to the north-west tip of Spain and round its corner on the west side, discover the coastlines known as R as Altas and R as Bajas.

And, of course, Spain s islands - the Balearic Islands and the Canary Islands - also offer a fine variety of beaches.

Want more detailed information on each individual "costa"? Click on the appropriate heading below ...

Southern Spain: Costas de la Luz, del Sol, Tropical and de Almer a.

Eastern Spain: Costas C lida, Blanca, de Valencia, del Azahar, Dorada, de Maresme and Brava.

Northern Spain: Costas Vasca and Verde, and R as Altas and Bajas.

The Islands: Balearic Islands and Canary Islands.

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