Mid and East Antrim Borough has four of the ‘best’ maritime locations in the province, according to Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful.
The charity, which runs environmental education programmes and awareness raising campaigns, has announced Blue Flag status for Carrickfergus Marina and Seaside Awards for Ballygally Beach, Larne; Brown’s Bay, Islandmagee and Carnlough Beach.
Beach and marina operators receiving a Blue Flag are demonstrating their commitment to protecting the coastal environment, excellent water quality, safety and providing access for all. Fun educational activities are also available at these sites.
The Seaside Award is the national standard for beaches across the UK. This programme ensures visitors of a clean, safe, attractive and well-managed beach with the facilities provided being appropriate for the location of the beach.
A total of 25 awards - 12 Blue Flag, 12 Seaside and 1 Green Coast - were presented on May 30, in time for the bathing season, which runs from June 1 until September 15.
Ian Humphreys, chief executive of Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful, said: “For your health, for good old fashioned ‘screen free’ fun and for helping us realise the wonder of our natural environment, it is hard to beat a visit to our coast or lough shores.
“Behind every enjoyable experience is a small team of committed beach and marina operators who toil year round to keep these places in pristine condition.
“These awards are one way of recognising their ongoing dedication and of course advertising the best very places to take a holiday.”