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article imageSeeking the best beach in Spain for 2013

By Anne Sewell     Jul 8, 2013 in Travel
The Spanish television channel,, has launched a competition to find the very best beach in Spain and is inviting people to vote for their favorites this summer.
With an incredible choice of sun and sand locations in several regions, many with the coveted Blue Flag status, it will be a strong race for the final.
The competition is free for everyone to vote for their favorite beaches, separated by Spanish coastal region, through the website and on Twitter.
The next phase, which will run from July 1 to August 1, will be for votes to be collected, and a list compiled of finalists in each region.
In the final phase, which will run from August 1 to 31, the best beaches in each region will compete with each other for the contested title of "Best Beach in Spain."
At present, has five strong contenders, all holding the most votes so far, and a video of these lovely locations can be viewed here, as well as photos and brief details of each one below:
Calella de Palafrugell, Girona:
This small town of less than 1,000 residents is located on the Costa Brava. A former fishing village, the town has traditional fisherman's cottages surrounding a pretty little cove. Many small white fishing boats are moored just off the beach:
Calella de Palafrugell  Baix Empordà  Catalunya  Spain
Calella de Palafrugell, Baix Empordà, Catalunya, Spain
Paddy Briggs
La Cala de Maro, Costa del Sol:
La Cala de Maro on the outskirts of Nerja, is a lovely beach on the eastern edge of the Costa del Sol, in southern Spain. Boasting crystal clear waters, and surrounded by cliffs, the beach is bordered on one side by a protected national park and on the other by agricultural land. The cliffs can be explored by kayak for an added attraction:
La Cala de Maro  on the outskirts of Nerja  Costa del Sol  southern Spain.
La Cala de Maro, on the outskirts of Nerja, Costa del Sol, southern Spain.
Explore Nerja
Maspalomas, Gran Canaria:
This beach, with miles of open sand, comprises very impressive sand dunes, as can be seen from the image below:
The sand dunes of Maspalomas  Gran Canaria  Canary Islands  Spain
The sand dunes of Maspalomas, Gran Canaria, Canary Islands, Spain
Calas de Medano, Tenerife:
Also in the Canary Islands, this lovely location, on the south west of the island of Tenerife, has fine golden sand, blown across from the coast of Africa:
El Medano: Beach  Punta Roja  Promenade - Tenerife  Spain
El Medano: Beach, Punta Roja, Promenade - Tenerife, Spain
Andree Stephan
La Granadella, Alicantina Jávea, Valencia:
While the beach itself does not appear to be the most breathtaking, the clear waters here offer incredible Scuba diving and the beach is located in a charming and picturesque setting, boasting excellent services. La Granadella was the winner in the 2012 competition:
La Granadella  Alicantina Jávea  Valencia  Spain
La Granadella, Alicantina Jávea, Valencia, Spain
Explore Nerja
Readers are welcome to visit's website to vote for their own favourite beach and to read more about Spain's Blue Flag beaches and marinas below.
Spain's Blue Flag Beaches and Marinas:
Spain is the country with the most Blue Flag beaches in the northern hemisphere, ahead of both Greece and Turkey.
In 2013, Spain has even beaten its own record, with 648 Blue Flags (consisting of 551 beaches and 97 marinas), which means that the country is staying ahead of 51 territories in 48 states who participate in the Northern Hemisphere for the prestigious Blue Flag status.
In 2013, Spain has added 10 more flags to those held in 2012 with 7 more in Valencia (who have done important work in cleaning and accessibility of their beaches), 4 more in Cantabria, 4 in Andalusia, 3 added to Catalonia, and despite a decline in the number of Blue Flag beaches in the Balearic Islands, which lost 6.
Spain retains global leadership with its 551 Blue Flag beaches, with other countries falling well behind: Greece (393), Turkey (383), France (365), Portugal (280), Italy (248) and Denmark (243).
Calella de Palafrugell  Baix Empordà  Catalunya  Spain
Calella de Palafrugell, Baix Empordà, Catalunya, Spain
Tempus 71
However with marinas that have been awarded Blue Flag status, Spain is in second position, with Germany in the number one spot with 108 winning ports as opposed to Spain's 97. After that comes Holland with 95, France with 88 and Italy with 62.
The Secretary of State for Tourism, Isabel Borrego, states that this record confirms Spain as a prime vacation destination, while continuing to encourage the various municipalities and the Association of Environmental Education and Consumer (Adeac) to continue in their quest for Blue Flag quality.
To look at Spain's Blue Flag status regionally, we see that Galicia is the leader, with 128 Blue Flag beaches followed by Valencia (114), Catalonia (111), Andalusia (96), Balearic Islands (62), Canary Islands (46), Murcia (26 ) and Asturias (18).
Only the Balearic Islands appear to be lagging in the race, as the islands lost six Blue Flags this year, with three of them being on the island of Mallorca.
The Blue Flag award is an international hallmark established in 1987 for standards such as water quality, safety, environmental education and information, the provision of services and general environmental management criteria. The Blue Flag is sought for beaches and marinas as an indication of their high environmental and quality standards.
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