As more and more countries win the battle against COVID-19, borders are beginning to open and we are seeing the light at the end of the tunnel getting closer by the day. In all corners of the world there are yachts primed and waiting to whisk guests off on a post-coronavirus superyacht charter where they can forget about the trials of the past few months and unwind amidst some of the most astounding landscapes on the planet.
A superyacht charter is among the most socially distanced and safe luxury holidays you could opt for during these strange times. With the highest levels of hygiene protocol, and the ability to be as far from other people as you choose, a superyacht charter during COVID-19 promises a worry-free, relaxing holiday. While entertainment venues, restaurants, bars and tourists attractions might be slower in re-opening, and the ones that choose to do so cautiously, there are some incredible charter destinations out there where the furthest you need to get from the yacht is a deserted cove or secret beach.
The situation is changing daily, and we will update you regularly, but for those yearning for a superyacht charter this summer, these are some of the European destinations open to superyachts and visitors.
As of 15th June, France plans to open its borders to European visitors and allow yacht charters to begin again. It is, however, placing restrictions on those coming from European countries which have imposed restrictions on French citizens. Recommendations for a yacht charter focus on keeping both guests and crew safe, including the wearing of masks by crew members, testing of temperatures, good ventilation and impeccable cleanliness.
France is one of the Mediterranean’s best-loved charter destinations. And while the French Riviera’s sophisticated towns might not be in their usual swing, the stunning coastline is as beautiful as ever, and likely to be far less crowded. For more inspiration check out our itineraries for chartering a yacht in the South of France.
Greece has managed to contain COVID-19 with impressive success, and the country is now making plans to re-open to foreign visitors from 15th June to a limited number of countries, and to a wider list on 1st July. Many of Greece’s businesses have been back open since mid- May, which is also when domestic travel restrictions were lifted. While it won’t be life as normal with regards shops, bars and restaurants, the glorious islands and sun-drenched scenery are the perfect away-from-it-all destination. Indeed, Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis spoke specifically of Greece’s open invitation to high end tourists, noting a yacht’s ability for self-sufficiency and the small groups of people on board.
While Athens will be the first airport to open to foreign visitors, others are expected to start opening from the beginning of July, when foreign flagged yachts will be allowed to enter and Greece yacht charters can begin again in earnest. Recommendations include keeping a temperature log of all those on board and maintaining stringent hygiene.
Greece is a vast watery playground for superyachts, and you don’t have to look far to discover golden beaches, traditional fishing villages and ancient sites. Discover what awaits on a yacht charter in the Cyclades, or check out our itineraries for cruising in the Greece.
As of 21st May, Croatia tentatively opened its borders to some countries, including to those from non-EU citizens, and yachts above 24 metres are now free to move and enter the country with passengers on board. This is wonderful news for those searching for a yacht charter in 2020, and there are many world-class vessels ready and waiting to host you. Recommendations include a daily monitoring of temperature of all those on board.
A superyacht charter in Croatia promises crystal clear waters, deserted beaches, the freshest seafood and hundreds of islands to explore. From Dubrovnik all the way up the stunning Dalmatian Coast and its outlying island, there is so much to choose from, so get some inspiration from our itineraries for cruising in Croatia.
Italy was the at epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak in Europe, but thanks to strict lockdown measures it has managed to get the outbreak under control and life is starting to slowly return to normal. As one of Europe’s most beautiful and highly visited countries, it makes for an unforgettable charter destination, and Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte has announced that foreign travel will be allowed from 3rd June and that visitors, including those from the UK, will not need to undergo any form of quarantine on arrival.
Italy’s cruising grounds are simply majestic. Choose a yacht charter on the Amalfi Coast, be lured by Sardinia’s Costa Smeralda, or indulge in the laid-back traditions of Corsica. Wherever you decide, you’ll find beautiful beaches and stunning landscapes which you’ll likely have all to yourself. For more ideas on where to charter a superyacht in Italy, see our itineraries.
Other European Countries for a Superyacht Charter During COVID-19
While Cyprus has not announced a formal re-opening to visitors, airports and seaports will be begin resuming operations between 9th June and 13th July. In the beginning phase the invitation will only be extended to visitors from countries it deems safe, which have similarly low infection rates. At the moment that doesn’t include visitors from the UK, although it is a constantly evolving situation and more countries will be added to the list as time goes by.
This is promising news for those wanting to set off on a superyacht charter in Cyprus to explore the rocky, beach-studded coastlines and the ancient archaeological sites.
Portugal has been easing itself out of lockdown since mid-March and is one of the first countries to welcome visitors back. The government has announced that from 6th June tourists, including those arriving by superyacht, will be welcome and not face any quarantine measures.
With low coronavirus cases compared to other European countries, and a good proportion of shops and restaurants open, Portugal offers the chance to head ashore and enjoy the pretty fishing villages along its beautiful 1000 kilometre coastline. With modern marinas and secluded anchorages, you can be assured of a socially distanced and relaxing superyacht charter in Portugal.
Sweden’s borders are open to EU and UK residents, including foreign yachts, and will be opened to other countries from 15th June. Sweden never adopted a full lockdown and as such hotels, shops, bars, restaurants and some museums are still open. The Stockholm archipelago offers some of northern Europe’s most astounding cruising grounds, with hundreds of deserted islands to explore, long evenings under the midnight sun and sheltered anchorage spots. A superyacht charter in Sweden during COVID-19 guarantees freedom to explore as you wish, yet plenty of places to keep your distance.
Turkey will be welcoming visitors from 15th June, when its borders and international airports will re-open. With a good selection of yachts available for charter in Turkey this is excellent news for those seeking a get-away in this post COVID-19 era. Whilst on terra firma, Turkey has made the wearing of masks mandatory in most settings, but out on your socially distanced yacht you are free to breathe in the fresh sea air and dive into the crystal clear sea. From Marmaris to Bodrum, Turkey’s long and dramatic coastline offers incredible cruising grounds and anchorages.
While Spain’s government has said they plan to re-open to tourists this summer, no further details have yet been provided. This includes one of the Mediterranean’s premier cruising grounds of the Balearics. So for superyacht charters in Spain in 2020, it’s a matter of watch this space.
Please do get in touch with our brokers who are keeping abreast of the ever-changing situation, and are able to offer guidance, insider knowledge, logistical advice and recommendations for the best destinations at this time.