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Cancun: The First to Achieve 39 Blue Flag Distinctions in Mexico

Beaches in Cancun with blue flag Certifications

Throughout the years, Mexico has been globally recognized thanks to its unrivaled culture, traditions, food, and tourism. With this in mind, the nation is aware that in order to stay a favorite tourist destination, it needs to pay attention to how its citizens and its tourists treat the environment. That is why the people in charge of environmental education in Mexico have been implementing new measures that help to maintain biodiversity and life on planet earth. Such is the case in the state of Quintana Roo, which has put special care and attention on the maintenance of its beaches. Quintana Roo is divided into 11 municipalities and Cancun is in the municipality Benito Juárez, the first municipality in Mexico to earn 39 Blue Flag badges in the 2021-2022 season.

But first…

What Is the International Blue Flag?

Blue Flag logo

The iconic Blue Flag is a symbol that is recognized by millions of people around the globe. The organization started as a French idea, where they asked students to make letters for bottles and then brought them to the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, thinking that the currents would take the bottles to different coastlines, demonstrating how pollution works. However, that didn’t help. But they had a logo, it was a blue flag with three waves and a bottle on top of the waves. After two years, the French came up with the idea of making the world’s first eco-label with a lot of criteria for beaches and marinas, prizing the most cared for and well-maintained ones. That was the start of the organization, which was heavily supported by the EU from its start in 1987 and for eleven years, up until 1998. Since then, the programme has been operating independently and receives help and support from the Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE) and is headquartered in Copenhagen, Denmark.

According to their website, Blue Flag is:

“A leading program promoting environmental education and sustainable management of beaches, marinas, and boating operators worldwide.”

Blue Flag

What is a Blue Flag Badge?

Blue flag beaches in Mexico

A Blue Flag badge is a prestigious award given annually by the FEE to beaches, marinas and sustainable boating tourism operators all around the world that meet the 33 criteria in the following categories:

  • Environmental education 
  • Water quality 
  • Management and environmental management 
  • Security and services 

In order to qualify for the coveted eco-label ‘Blue Flag’, a series of stringent criteria must be met and maintained. The FEE works tirelessly to ensure that the unmatched standards of the programme are maintained internationally.

Cancun, the Bluest Seas in Mexico

Bluest beaches

This July 2021, Benito Juárez (the municipality which includes Cancun), became the first municipality in all Mexico to achieve 39 Blue Flag certifications in the 2021-2022 season, thanks to its water quality security and sustainability efforts. This positions this destination in Mexico as the paradise with the most distinctions on the Blue Flag beach list.

In the words of the Executive Director of FEE Mexico, Joaquín Díaz Ríos, “I want to congratulate everyone’s work because it is a joint effort, but I insist, without leadership, it cannot be achieved.”

It truly was an honor for all Mexico to receive such good news, and all beach destinations in Mexico are working towards obtaining the tag as they strive to meet all the criteria to meet international standards of environmental cleanliness and water quality. In total, Mexico has received 98 Blue Flag certifications to date, positioning Mexico in the top 10 countries with the most distinctions.

Beaches in Cancun with Blue Flag Certifications


Cancun is an idyllic place to vacation, so if you are planning a trip to this magical paradise, why not visit a Blue Flag beach? You can choose one (or all) of the ones listed below:

  • Del Niño 
  • Las Perlas 
  • Chac Mool 
  • Ballenas 
  • Marlín 
  • Delfines 
  • Coral 

Cancun has always been a popular destination for sunseekers and now that the destination has proven its commitment to the environment by receiving a total of 39 certifications, now there is just one more reason to go to the beach in Cancun!