European Best Destinations ― a travel portal that writes about beautiful places in Europe, inspires travel, and helps plan vacations. The editors of the portal create guidebooks and ratings of the best European destinations.
Three times a year European Best Destinations holds open voting: “Best Destinations of the Year”, “Best Ski Resorts” and “Best Christmas Fairs”. One million users vote for their favorite places.
The list was based on the level of coronavirus infection in the region; how national governments are dealing with the effects of the pandemic; and whether vaccination certificates from other nations are recognized in the country.
Where to have a safe holiday in Europe
The places European Best Destinations tells us about are the earliest on the “green zone” list. In the European Union, a “green zone” is defined as a place where fewer than 25 cases of coronavirus infection per 100,000 people have occurred in the country within two weeks, and the percentage of positive PCR tests is less than 4 percent.
Portugal: Madeira, Porto Santo, Corvo, Flores islands
Covid restrictions on arrival: passengers must have a negative test result for coronavirus given 72 hours before departure. An electronic passenger card is filled out before boarding the plane.
Before traveling to Madeira, you must complete the form at madeirasafe.com between 12 and 48 hours before departure. Children under 12 years are included in the questionnaire of one of the accompanying adults. After the questionnaire is registered a QR-code will be sent to the specified e-mail address. It must be shown on arrival at Madeira airport.
The island of Madeira is the leader in the number of vaccinated workers in the tourism industry. Tourists come to the island to see the relict forests and high cliffs.
Porto Santo is a small island with a variety of outdoor activities: diving, water skiing, catamaran rides, windsurfing, and kitesurfing.
Corvo Island is the smallest island in the Azores archipelago. The island is an extinct volcano Caldeira, inside its crater formed two lakes. To get to them, local guides have organized a hiking route, which takes only 40 minutes.
Greece, Antipaxos Islands, Crete, Corfu
Covid restrictions on arrival: one day prior to travel, you must fill out an entry form and receive a barcode. Vaccinated Russians must have a certificate of vaccination, issued no earlier than 14 days after receipt of the second dose of vaccine. If there is no vaccination certificate or certificate of illness, a test taken 72 hours prior to departure will do.
Greece is one of the most popular countries for summer vacations in 2021. 18 islands have already received covid-free status. It means that all citizens of the island have been vaccinated against coronavirus.
Greece is loved for its beautiful landscapes, warm sea, interesting history and, of course, delicious local cuisine. Corfu offers tourists a private tour of the island and the palace of Achilleion.
Antipaxos is a nature reserve, which presents species of flora and fauna, listed in the Red Book. Crete surprises with pink sand beaches and picturesque Balos lagoon, which is known all over the world as a refuge of monk seals and loggerhead turtles.
Covid restrictions on arrival: if you show a negative test result for coronavirus on arrival, taken 72 hours before departure, there will be no quarantine. Otherwise, you will have to take the test already in the country and stay in quarantine for 14 days. In the airplane, you need to fill out a declaration of movement and a passenger’s whereabouts form. After arrival at the airport, they take your temperature.
The Maltese government has made many efforts to protect the population and tourists. The country leads the European Union in the number of citizens who have been vaccinated against coronavirus.
Tourists choose Malta for its beautiful sea views and delicious Mediterranean cuisine. The country has about 300 sunny days a year, the average annual temperature is 23 ° C. Most of Malta’s beaches are awarded the blue flag. It means that the beach meets high-quality standards and it is safe to swim there.
Covid restrictions on arrival: you need to take two tests for coronavirus – one 72 hours before departure, the second on arrival. The test at the airport costs about 30 €. You do not have to follow the quarantine. If a Russian shows a certificate of vaccination at entry into Cyprus, it is not necessary to pass the test at the airport. One day before departure you need to fill out a form and get a CyprusFlightPass.
Cypriots eagerly await tourists and publish on the Internet tips for rest on the island. The most popular tips are to swim in the Aphrodite Baths or the waters of Cape Greco, to go to the “Bridge of lovers” near Ayia Napa, or just to sunbathe on the most beautiful beaches, such as Nissi or Konnos.
Croatia: Korcula Island
Covid restrictions on arrival: tourists from European “green list” countries do not need to take a PCR test. Others need to provide a negative test result, a certificate of vaccination, or a doctor’s certificate of recovery from coronavirus. All entrants must also fill out an online form.
Korcula is the birthplace of traveler Marco Polo. The island is home to centuries-old pine trees and dense coniferous forests. The sandy beaches of the island are located in quiet, tranquil bays. The summer sea breeze creates perfect conditions for windsurfing. Sports and activity lovers can participate in a yacht regatta.
Spain: the islands of Menorca and La Gomera
Covid restrictions on arrival: you must provide a negative PCR test for coronavirus 72 hours before departure or a certificate of vaccination.
The island of La Gomera is chosen by lovers of outdoor activities. The island is organized by various hiking trails, a total length of about 600 kilometers. On a walk, you can see rare plants and meet the endemic of the island, a small canary lizard.
Menorca is safer than the Spanish mainland. On the island, tourists rent villas with pools and tennis courts to spend a vacation away from the noisy resorts.
How to get to the islands if the borders are closed again
Russians need a visa to enter the European Union. Because of the pandemic, consulates of countries temporarily issue visas in limited numbers. To be able to visit EU countries without visas, cosmopolitans obtain residence permits in these countries.
Countries are gradually opening their borders for the summer season of 2021, but they can close them again to tourists at any time. Residents of the country have the right to return to the country at any time, despite the restrictions.
Russians can obtain a residence permit for Portugal, Greece, Malta, or Cyprus if they marry a citizen of the country, go to university, or get a job at a local company. But the fastest way is to take part in the country’s investment program.
Permanent residence in Malta is granted for a period of six months or more. The investor rents or buys real estate in the country, make a non-refundable contribution to a state fund and a contribution to a non-governmental organization, pays an administrative fee, and proves assets of €500,000.
Residence permit in Greece are granted for the opening of a deposit, the purchase of the real estate, or government bonds. It takes about three months to obtain a residence permit. It is not required to reside in Greece both before and after obtaining the status.
Residence permit in Portugal is issued for a period of two months or more. Investors buy real estate, bonds, or units of venture capital funds, open a deposit, create companies, or invest in science and cultural heritage.
The current terms of the program run through the end of 2021. Now investors most often buy real estate in Lisbon, Porto, and resort cities. From 2022, buy housing will be allowed only in the Azores, Madeira, and inland regions. The minimum amount will grow on four options out of eight.
Permanent residence in Cyprus is granted by purchasing housing or commercial real estate, investments in funds, or local businesses. The processing time is two months. Do not reside in Cyprus, it is enough to come to the country once every two years.
Immigrant Invest – a licensed agent of European residence permit programs. If you want to get a residence permit in the European Union and travel freely in the Schengen, seek advice from the experts of the investment programs.