The scorching heat and long evenings signal the beginning of the summer season. With the advent of summer, comes the schedule of activities geared towards keeping cool. If you are searching for an affordable getaway, why not grab your swimwear, sun tan lotion, invite your family and friends and visit one of the Urban Development Corporation’s (UDC) Blue Flag Certified beaches.
These include Ocho Rios Bay Beach in St. Ann, Bluefields Beach Park, on the southeast coast of Westmoreland and Long Bay Beach Park 1, situated along Negril’s famous seven mile white sand beach.
Ocho Rios Bay Beach is open to the public daily from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at a cost of $200 for adults and $100 for children between the ages of 2-11, Bluefields Beach Park is open daily from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Patrons are allowed to utilize the beach free of cost. However, adults are required to pay $100 to use the requisite sanitary and changing facilities and children under the age of 12 are required to pay $50.00. Long Bay Beach Park 1 is open daily from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at a cost of $150 for patrons 12 years and older and $50 for patrons 11 years of age and under.
UDC received Blue Flag certification for these beaches on November 1, 2010 at the official start of the Blue Flag season. The certification was presented by the Blue Flag National Operator, the Negril Area Environmental Protection Trust (NEPT). Of the eleven beaches that were awarded Blue Flag certification during 2010, UDC was the only organization that received certification for public beaches; all the other beaches are located at resorts. Therefore, the UDC has allowed the quality facilities that are available at the resorts to be available to the general public.
Blue Flag certification is a prestigious international eco-label awarded to beaches and marinas. UDC worked assiduously to get the three beaches up to Blue Flag standard. This accomplishment was made possible due to the hard work of the Corporation’s Natural Resources Management and Environmental Planning Department (NRMEP). This Department regularly implements programmes such as Water Quality Monitoring and Environmental Audits at these beaches and other UDC attractions. All in an attempt to ensure that all UDC attractions meet strict environmental guidelines.
When you visit a UDC Blue Flag Certified beach, you can rest assured that you are getting value for your money. So if you are in the mood to enjoy powder soft white sand, crystal clear water and captivating scenery take time out to visit a UDC Blue Flag certified beach today.