With summer fast approaching and COVID-19 vaccines being the rolled out across the world, many of us are cautiously optimistic about a holiday abroad. Chartering a yacht remains one of the preferred options when it comes to privacy and seclusion, particularly in these uncertain times, so we have put together a guide on some of the top yacht charter destinations in Europe and when they will be opening their doors to the rest of the world.
Europe’s latest developments
One of the major developments in recent days has been Europe’s introduction of a “Green Certificate” – proof that a person has been vaccinated against COVID-19, received a negative test result, or recovered from COVID-19. Available in digital or paper format, this comes with a QR code to ensure security and authenticity of the certificate.
Furthermore, a ‘green list’ has been developed by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, detailing the countries with the lowest infection rates. As part of this initiative, citizens from the US, among other countries, are now able to travel to the continent. The United Kingdom, however, has delayed entering its next stage of lockdown roadmap by four weeks due to the Delta variant, and therefore has not yet been added to this list.
Even for countries that are on the list, it is important to research the restrictions specific to each country before travel as individual countries may choose to enforce additional restrictions. We have laid some of these out below…
Croatia is a destination which relies heavily on tourism, it has become increasingly popular over the past couple of years and is tipped to be one of the top destinations to travel to in 2021. On 1 April, Croatia removed the requirement for a 10-day quarantine for travellers who can provide either a negative COVID-19 test, a vaccination certificate, or proof of recovery. Those coming from outside the EU additionally need to show proof of having paid for accommodation, whether this is a hotel, a yacht, or another form of accommodation. Furthermore, EU nationals that come from countries on the ‘green list’ of the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, will be abler to enter freely.
Home to over 1,000 islands Croatia is perfect to explore by yacht. You can join 40m Almissa or 48m Corsario here this summer as they explore these dazzling waters.
Greece has also been ahead of the curve in terms of opening up to the rest of Europe. From 14 May, fully vaccinated travellers or those who can provide a negative COVID-19 test from the European Union, Schengen Area and the United Kingdom, have been allowed to visit Greece. In addition, Greece has started to welcome travellers from countries with low infection rates. Nearly all visitors will need to present a negative test, an EU digital certificate, or a vaccination certificate on their arrival. There are plans to declare 80 islands – including many of the country’s main holiday hotspots – safe by the end of June.
With the immaculate Ionian Islands and the captivating Cyclades, Greece is the perfect playground for a yacht charter. This summer 38m Souraya and 40m Pathos will be based in this beautiful part of the world.
On May 17 the quarantine requirement was dropped for visitors arriving in Italy, allowing those with a negative COVID-19 test or travellers from the U.S arriving on a COVID-tested flight, to enter, they have also now started issuing and accepting the EU Digital Green Pass. Individual areas of Italy are colour coded, with the majority in yellow zones meaning outdoor dining is allowed and hotels are open.
After suffering a 70% loss in tourist revenue last year, the Italian island of Capri has really gone above and beyond in an attempt to boost tourism levels for the summer. Of 15,000 inhabitants, all hospitality workers and adult residents have been vaccinated and the island is COVID-free. Furthermore, for those who need it, they will organise and pay for a COVID-19 test and provide the results in time for departure – something that often has to be organised and paid for by the travellers themselves.
With a stunning coastline and a host of beautiful islands, Italy is perfect to explore by yacht. 22m Black Magic and 25m Light Blue will be available to charter there this summer.
In a bid to reopen tourism this summer, France has updated their COVID-19 vaccination certificate to streamline with the EU Digital COVID Certificate, this allows limitless cross-Europe travel using proof of vaccination, a negative test result, or proof of recovery from COVID-19 less than six months ago. Fully-vaccinated visitors from the United Kingdom and the United States will still be required to produce a negative test result. But they will no longer have to quarantine and non-essential travel will now be allowed. A traffic light system launched on 4 June allowed 36 countries entry into France with proof of a PCR or antigen test taken within the last 72 hours.
France has, of course, always been a yacht lovers’ paradise, from its glitzy harbours to its breathtaking natural landscapes. You can meet 35m Accama or 30m Accama Delta here this summer to explore the colourful French coastline.
If you’re craving a summer getaway, why not take a look at our full list of charter yachts in East Med and West Med.