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  • Beaches

    To view a map showing the location of beaches in the County click here

    Cork County Council has a number of beaches that are popular with both local communities and tourists alike. A large number of activities are carried out on these beaches including swimming, boating, fishing, surfing, wind surfing and other water sport activities.The Council's responsibilities normally extends to beach cleaning, provision of public toilets, litter control, provision of car parking, beach access including disabled access and provision of tourist and environmental information. Regular water sampling in accordance with EPA Guidelines is carried out on 13 designated bathing waters over the summer bathing season. The Council also provides a Lifeguard on the more popular beaches for the summer months. Seven County Cork beaches were awarded the Blue Flag in 2015 and 10 beaches achieving the Green Coast Award. Click to learn more about the Blue Flag System and Blue Flag beaches in County Cork 

    Barley Cove Beach

    Barley Cove Beach, Mizen Peninsula

    High Quality Beaches
    The current list of identified bathing waters in County Cork are below.

    • Youghal Claycastle
    • Youghal Front Strand
    • Redbarn
    • Garryvoe
    • Garretstown
    • Garrylucas
    • Coolmaine
    • Fountainstown
    • Inchydoney
    • Owenahincha
    • Warren
    • Tragumna
    • Barleycove


    Blue Flag Beaches
    Of the beaches currently monitored by Cork County Council Environment department, 7 identified bathing waters have achieved Blue Flag Status for 2015 season.

    The 7 Blue Flags awarded to Cork for the 2015 bathing season are:

    • Garrylucas (Ballinspittle)
    • Inchydoney (Clonakilty)
    • Barleycove (Schull) 
    • Owenahincha (Roscarbery)
    • Tragumna (Skibbereen)
    • Redbarn (Youghal)
    • Garrettstown (Ballinspittle)


    The Blue Flag is awarded on an annual basis. All monitoring results are sent to An Taisce once they are received by the Local Authority. An Taisce carry out inspections during the bathing season to establish level of compliance with all the Blue Flag Criteria. Applications for Blue Flags are made annually by the Local Authority. Award winners can fly a blue flag during the bathing season from the beginning of June until 2nd week in September.
    Blue Flag beaches are maintained to the relevant Blue Flag standards with provision of car parking, public toilets, lifeguards, litter control and environmental information/activities offered during the summer months by the County Council through the relevant Area Engineer's office. The necessary water quality monitoring and maintenance of the Blue Flag Award in Cork is the responsibility of the Environment Directorate of Cork County Council which is based at Inniscarra.

    Further information on Blue flag awards can be found at


    Green Coast Beaches
    The current list of Green Cost bathing waters for Cork 2015 are:

    • Ring
    • Ardnahinch
    • Inch
    • Rocky Bay
    • Oysterhaven
    • Ballyrisode
    • Galleycove
    • Dooneen Pier
    • Garinish
    • Inchydoney East


    The Green Coast Award is a specially designed award for those rural beaches which have excellent water quality but do not necessarily have the strict infrastructure that is required to meet all the criteria set for Blue Flag status e.g. toilets, parking, lifeguards, etc.
    Community involvement through local coast care groups is a requirement for the Green Coast Award and Cork County Council would like to commend the excellent work and commitment of our local community / coast care groups in the management and care of their local coastline.
    Further information on Green Coast awards can be found at



    Useful Links




    Beach Permit


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