Just when we thought the COVID-19 crisis would last forever, the vaccines arrived and suddenly there was hope that we may all be able to travel again soon. But where will vaccinated passengers be welcome? And how?
The European Parliament is currently working on a Digital Green Certificate which will allow vaccinated EU citizens to travel freely across the continent.
But some countries are already making their own plans. Iceland has already introduced certificates for its vaccinated citizens and Spain, Greece, Georgia, Portugal, Denmark and Sweden are due to follow suit.
After a year of lockdowns and restricted travel, those who have been vaccinated ahead of the summer season might have the opportunity to get away. With some help from European Best Destinations (EBD) Euronews Travel has ranked the best destinations for summer 2021.
The list includes everything from city breaks to beach holidays across nine different countries.
Travel restrictions are changing all the time - but at the time of publishing, everywhere on the list is due to implement lighter restrictions or vaccine passports as soon as possible.
16 - Cyprus
Cyprus will be accepting vaccinated tourists by the summer provided you have had both doses of our vaccine and the second dose was at least seven days before departure.
15 - Stockholm, Sweden
Sweden has used different methods to most European countries in tackling COVID-19 and has quickly warmed to the idea of vaccine passports for travellers and domestic life. Stockholm is a must-visit for culture, food and outdoor activities.
14 - Kos Island, Greece
Greece is ready to welcome anyone with a vaccination certificate or a negative COVID-19 test taken no more than 72 hours previously. Kos is perfect for a sandy beach holiday and is famous for its warm, crystal clear waters.
13 - Canary Islands, Spain
Spain is planning to incorporate vaccine passports into their travel corridor plans and will be open to those who are vaccinated or can present a negative COVID-19 test. Why not get away to one of the seven beautiful Canary Islands in summer 2021?
12 - Copenhagen, Denmark
Denmark has had vaccine passports for its own citizens since February 2021 and will accept them from other countries, as well as proof of a negative test. Copenhagen is the perfect city break, and is ideally situated for a longer stay if you want to see the surrounding countryside while you’re there.
11 - Rhodes Island, Greece
Greece is happy to accept visitors who have been vaccinated with no need to quarantine or a test, and also accepts those with a negative COVID-19 test from the last 72 hours. Rhodes has medieval ruins as well as beaches and is a great destination for exploring post-lockdown.
10 - Rubjerg Knude, Denmark
Having already introduced vaccine passports domestically for things like entering concerts and booking tables at restaurants, Denmark is happy to recognise them from foreign travellers too. Rubjerg Knude is ideal for those wanting some open space after being confined indoors for so long.
9 - Athens, Greece
Greece’s acceptance of vaccine passports comes in handy if you want to experience the excitement and historic culture of Athens. It isn’t far from the beach, and there’s plenty of restaurants and monuments to keep you occupied while you’re there.
8 - Seville, Spain
Spain’s travel corridors mean you can officially visit Seville - a city which is rich in culture - with a vaccine passport in hand. Seville is convenient for Spain’s most beautiful beaches and stunning castles.
7 - Cavtat Konavle region, Croatia
Croatia has maintained remarkably low levels of infection when it comes to COVID-19 and is ready to welcome vaccinated travellers as well as those with a negative test. Cavtat and the Konavle region are famous for their blue waters and fantastic food.
6 - Iceland
The first country on the list to implement vaccine passports for its citizens, Iceland is the ideal place for a weekend break or a longer stay. Why not take a trip to the North Atlantic and enjoy the breathtaking scenery and relaxing hot springs?
5 - Kefalonia, Greece
Kefalonia’s restaurants and bars open from mid-April and the island has beaches large enough to socially distance on. Take advantage of Greece’s vaccine passport policy to see some of the country’s natural wonders and most beautiful beaches.
4 - Rethymno, Greece
Another popular Greek destination, Rethynmo is rich in gastronomy, culture and history.
3 - The Azores, Portugal
Portugal accepts vaccine passports from other countries and with Azores being the first archipelago in the world to have an entirely vaccinated population, you’ll have plenty of company. Those without vaccines can also stay provided they have a negative test.
2 - Madeira, Portugal
Perfect for those looking for outdoor, health and wellness activities, Madeira has remained relatively COVID-19 free throughout the pandemic.
1 - Tbilisi, Georgia
The safest destination of summer 2020, Tbilisi was open to vaccinated travellers almost as soon as the vaccine was available. You can travel to Georgia if you have a certificate stating that you’ve had both doses of your assigned vaccine.
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