New partnership to enhance wheelchair accessibility to the coast

People with disabilities can now easily find out if they can get access to the 4,500 Blue Flag beaches, marinas or boating tourism operators through a new partnership with

Wheelmap is a free online map for finding and rating wheelchair accessible places worldwide. The project is run by the nonprofit organisation “Sozialhelden”, a disability rights organisation based in Berlin. The Blue Flag partnership with is a step forward to improving the coasts’ ease of access and providing information about wheelchair accessible facilities. The Blue Flag listings on Wheelmap contain a direct link to the website, so that users can also benefit from all the detailed information which is provided there.

Credits: DICOM

Credits: DICOM

How does it work?

Wheelmap rates the wheelchair accessibility of public places such as public transport, restaurants, playgrounds and tourism sites worldwide, using a smart traffic light system. The colors green, yellow and red indicate if a place is fully, partially or not wheelchair accessible. As everyone can easily update a site´s rating by using its app or web application, Wheelmap helps to increase the availability of accessibility information for people with disabilities. The Blue Flag sites have now become part of a collection of nearly 1 million public places rated by the Wheelmap community and additional information on another 500,000 places which is provided by dozens of partner organisations. An example of an accessible Blue Flag boating operator as it is listed on Wheelmap can be found here

We are very pleased that our two projects, which promote sustainable and equitable tourism in very different ways, have joined forces. We are working together to make accessibility information easily available to millions of people with mobility impairments who want to enjoy the coast and all it has to offer.
Svenja Heinecke, Wheelmap Community Manager
Credits: DICOM

Credits: DICOM

With more than 4,500 awarded sites in 45 countries around the world, Blue Flag plays a key role in spreading inclusive initiatives in the coastal tourism industry. 

We want the public to be able to choose the best site depending on their needs, as all offer different levels of accessibility. It can be to the site, or in the water itself, which is a huge difference on how you experience the coast. We are extremely happy to be able to share our data to Wheelmap, a dedicated platform for international accessibility.
Sophie Bachet Granados, International Blue Flag Director