Islands & Coasts
The country's onshore ecosystems are of extreme importance. The
coastline's length is 15,000 km in total (of which about half is the
coastline of islands) where there are sandy beaches, sandy strands,
dunes, craggy coasts, onshore wetlands (lagoons, morasses,
periodically flooded areas, salty fields, shallow brackish waters
An essential element of the Greek tourism product peculiarity is the
island phenomenon. A total of 227 inhabited islands (of which
164 are washed by the Aegean Sea) are part of the Greek territory.
Still, only 78 islands have more than 100 inhabitants (1991 Greek
National Statistical Service Census). 59.9% of the whole country's
hotel units, 62.2% of the available rooms and 62.2% of the hotel beds
is concentrated on the Greek islands.
On June 5th 2002 the announcement was made of this year's awards of
the "European Blue Flags" Campaign to 354 Greek beaches and 7 marinas.
Greece is ranked second in number of awarded beaches.
The Blue Flag is an international symbol of quality for organised
beaches and marinas in 23 countries in Europe and other parts of the
It is awarded, from 1987, onwards each year to those beaches and
marinas which comply with strict criteria concerning cleanliness,
organisation, and protection of the environment.
The Campaign is targeted at coastal municipalities and co-operating
private organisations in 23 European Countries.
ิhe programme is offered internationally by the Foundation for
Environmental Education in Europe (FEEE). The general coordination is
by Friluftsraadet - The Danish Outdoor Council.
(Scandiagade 13 - DK- 2450 Copenhagen SV- Denmark
Tel.: 0045 33 79 00 79 - Fax: 0045 33 79 01 79)
The Operator of the Programme in Greece is the Hellenic Society for
the Protection of Nature (HSPN).
(20, Nikis str., - 105 57 Athens - Greece
Tel.: 010 3314563, 3225285 - Fax: 010 3225285)
The programme is supported by the Ministries of the Environment,
Planning and Public Works, Interior, Public Administration and
Decentralisation, Merchant Marine and Health and Social Security. Also
by the National Tourism Organisation and the Central Union of
Municipalities and Communities of Greece.