Szabolcs Juhász, the tourism director of the Hungarian Tourism Agency, said at the beach qualification ceremony of the Balaton Association that 97 beach developments at Lake Balaton received HUF 9 billion thanks to the agency’s beach development program launched four years ago with government support. Many beaches on Lake Balaton have been completely renovated, which may have contributed to the highest-ever number of entries this year for the beach qualification competition.
Countrywide, 114 beach developments have been completed with funding of HUF 11.5 billion in the last four phases, and another HUF 3 billion can now be spent on developments in the new, fifth phase.
Gábor Lombár, the president of the Balaton Association, said these developments are very important because guests arriving at Lake Balaton mostly judge the quality of the region and local services. He welcomed the opportunity to work with the NGO to conduct a survey on what developments local communities would consider important in the future.
Erzsébet Fadgyas, Chief Medical Officer of Somogy County, said that this year, 64 mostly free beaches were allowed to operate on the southern shore of Lake Balaton. The quality of the beaches is constantly being monitored, and based on the measurement results along the Somogy shore, it can be said that the water quality of Lake Balaton is excellent and no algae have appeared on the southern shore so far, she said.
Krisztina Fabacsovicsné Kovács, secretary of the Balaton Association, said that this is the 18th time the Blue Wave flag beach certification has been announced since 2004. The awarded places receive a rating from one to five stars, indicating the quality of the beaches’ services.
During the qualification, the committee examined the parking conditions, the condition and cleanliness of bathrooms, the level of accessibility of the beach, the condition of the environment, and the quality and shade of the playgrounds. Sports facilities, child-friendly services and restaurants were also taken into account, she said.
The winner of this year’s beach qualification competition was the Municipal Beach in Csopak.
Out of all the entries, 24 beaches on Lake Balaton won a five-star flag, while 16 beaches got a four-star and 3 beaches a three-star Blue Wave flag.