WESSA (The Wildlife and Environment Society of South Africa), the National Operator for Blue Flag South Africa officially launched the 2021/22 Blue Flag Season this year at Hermanus in the Western Cape.

The award ceremony was held at Grotto Beach on the 27 th October 2021 and attended by Ms Shamilla Chettiar, the Deputy Director General of the National Department of Tourism, Mr Dudley Coetzee, Executive Mayor of the Overstrand Municipality and the new WESSA CEO Dr Andrew Baxter. In recognition for their excellence in safety, amenities, cleanliness and environmental standards, 60 Blue Flags will be proudly flown at 51 beaches, 5 marinas and by 4 sustainable tourism boats around South Africa over the forthcoming 2021/2022 Blue Flag season. The season officially opens on the 1 st December 2021. In his welcome address at the launch, Mr Dudley Coetzee of Overstrand Municipality gave his commitment to a safe and clean environment for the Western Cape treasures to be enjoyed!

The award also allows for potential Blue Flag sites to participate in a pilot programme. Thirty-three Pilot beach sites were recognized this year for their efforts toward reaching Blue Flag status in the near future. With a national goal of 100 Blue Flag sites by 2030, all efforts are now focused on assisting these pilot sites to become fully awarded with the Blue Flag. Please go to: https://wessa.org.za/our-work/sustainable-tourism/blue-flag-south-africa/ for a list of all full status and pilot sites for the 2021/2022 Blue Flag season.

Blue Flag South Africa is proudly in its twenty first year. In 2001, South Africa was the first country outside of Europe to join the Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE) on the Blue Flag Programme. Since then, many countries outside of Europe have followed South Africa’s example and joined Blue Flag giving the programme its international recognition. Speaking on behalf of the National Department of Tourism, Ms Shamilla Chettiar, in her keynote address for the day praised the tourism sector for being resilient and rising again, and that South Africa’s strong relationship with our stakeholders will be built on to bring back tourists to our shores. Ms Chettiar went on to say that Blue Flag represents excellence in service delivery by municipalities, who are the heartbeat of our country. WESSA continues to celebrate the great work of Grotto Beach and the Overstrand Municipality, hosts of the 2021/2022 launch who proudly achieved their Blue Flag status for 21 years! WESSA is committed to continue working together with municipalities and tourism operators to build the Blue Flag programme to its full potential and to restore the tourism industry after the devastating effects of COVD-19. We also aim to expand on conserving our marine and coastal environment, raise environmental awareness and increase sound environmental practices amongst tourists, coastal communities and beach managers.

Image 1: Blue Flag Overstrand Municipality Sites 2021 2022

Back left to right: Dr Andrew Baxter WESSA CEO, Councillor Kari Brice, Anver Wyngaard, Mayor Dudley Coetzee, Francoise Myburgh, Shamilla Chettiar Department of Tourism.

Front left to right: Whale Crier Bulelani Ngidi, Dencil Arendse

Image 2: WESSA Flag Hoisting ceremony

From left to right: Morgan Griffiths WESSA, Dudley Coetzee Overstrand Municipality, Kari Brice, Shamilla Chettiar NDT, Bulelani Ngidi, Tevya Lotriet WESSA, Andrew Baxter WESSA.

Image 3: Ray Nkonyeni Special Award

From left to right: WESSA CEO Dr Andrew Baxter, Nomfundo Dlamini Umdoni Municipality (representing Ray Nkonyeni Municipality), Shamilla Chettiar National Department of Tourism.

Image 4: WESSA Blue Flag Team

From left to right:  Lindokuhle Mkhize, Sakhile Sithole, Morgan Griffiths, Vincent Shacks, Tevya Lotriet, Andrew Baxter

Image 5: WESSA Blue Flag hoisting with Mayor

From left to right: Executive Mayor Dudley Coetzee, Shamilla Chettiar, Andrew Baxter and officials


For more information please contact:
WESSA Communications Manager
sarah@wessa.co.za : 076 213 9873