Now open: Peru’s Inca Trail, the Galapagos and Phuket



(CNN) – Well folks, July is here and Covid-19 and its variants are still refusing to pack their bags and take a summer break.

Fortunately, CNN Travel is here to take you through this week’s news of which destinations are opening their borders, easing their regulations, or shutting their hatches.

The American

CNN’s Pete Muntean reports that the weekend of July 4th is projected to be one of the busiest days for US airports since the pandemic began.

This is not an exercise.

The July 4th weekend in the United States will be as busy as it was before Covid, with guaranteed queues at airports and traffic jams on the highways.
And after a pandemic hiatus last year, many places known for their Independence Day fireworks celebrations will be back in action in 2021. CNN Travel has put together a round-up of some of the top spots and travel times.

In the Empire State, New Yorkers can celebrate the holiday with two Statues of Liberty.

France gave them as a present US with a second statue – a “little sister” 1/16 the size – and she will be on display Ellis Island until July 5th before moving to his new home in the residence of the French ambassador in Washington, DC

Visitors can finally get back inside the Statue of Liberty itself. Its interior was reopened to the base on Thursday.

The famous monument’s “little sister” leaves Paris for New York City before Independence Day. As a gift from France to America, it will first be exhibited on Ellis Island and then will remain in Washington, DC for 10 years.

Last weekend, CNN was on board the first cruise ship to sail out of a US port in more than 15 months.

Celebrity Edge departed from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, on a seven-day voyage with ports of call in Mexico and the Bahamas. We are happy to inform you that there were no queues at the buffet and that there were enough sun loungers available by the pool.

About in Hawaii, the compulsory test for fully vaccinated travelers ends before the trip on July 8th, which coincides with the vaccination rate of the Aloha states of 60%.

Further new rules will come into force on the same day. Indoor gathering sizes can range from 10 to 25 people and restaurants can be up to 75% capacity.

From July 5, fully vaccinated Canadians and permanent residents entering the country after traveling abroad can exit the mandatory two-week quarantine early if they test negative for Covid upon arrival.

Newfoundland and Labrador, the country’s easternmost province, has reopened its borders to other Canadians, so the delights of the UNESCO World Heritage Site Gros Morne National Park and Fogo Island can once again be enjoyed by all citizens of the country.

There is good news for adventure travelers as permits for Peru‘s Inka Trail is on sale for the first time since March 2020. Guided tours will resume on July 15th and will be used at 50%.

A marine iguana shivers on the beach at Tortuga Bay in the Galapagos Islands.

PABLO COZZAGLIO / AFP via Getty Images

In Europe

European countries open like the doors of an advent calendar. Two of the newest to join the party are Switzerland and Sweden, both of which opened their borders this week to travelers from the US and other eligible nations.

The EU Digital Covid Certificate was officially introduced on July 1st after it had already been issued on a voluntary basis in several of the EU27 member states.

The ‘vaccine passport’ is a way for EU citizens to prove that they have been vaccinated, recently had a negative PCR test, or have recovered from the coronavirus and should allow people to skip quarantine and testing while in the Move block.

However, one country is behind in the starting block: Ireland will not be able to issue certificates until the reopening date on July 19, with a cyberattack in May being responsible for the delay.
A picture shows a panorama of the city of Florence with the "Dom" Santa Maria del Fiore Cathedral on April 8, 2015 in Florence.  AFP PHOTO / GABRIEL BOUYS / AFP / GABRIEL BOUYS (Photo credit should be GABRIEL BOUYS / AFP via Getty Images)

Florence: No loitering at night, please.

Gabriel Bouys / AFP via Getty Images

The Italian city Florence is preparing for the influx of summer tourists by banning evening walks in the city’s most popular nightlife areas unless people have receipts proving they’ve eaten or drunk.
About in Moscow, the Russian capital is experiencing an increase in new Covid cases. Restaurants, cafes and bars have started asking customers for proof of vaccination or a negative coronavirus test before they can enter.

The United Kingdom has added popular European destinations to its “green list” for travel, including Malta, Madeira and the Balearic Islands, as well as destinations in the Atlantic and the Caribbean, including Bermudas, the Cayman Islands, Antigua, Barbuda, Dominica, Barbados and Grenada.

This means UK vacationers no longer need to self-isolate when returning from these locations, but – as always – the list is subject to change.

Middle East and Africa

Abu Dhabi, the capital of the Emirates, is offering free Covid-19 vaccines to any traveler who wants one. Previously, these vaccines were only available to citizens or resident visa holders, but the potential for “exit” could bring even more avid tourists – and their wallets – into the country.
And these thrusts will come in handy next month. As of August 20, the city will only allow vaccinated people in some public spaces, including schools, universities and kindergartens. The August date is meant to give people more time to prick and get ready.
The picturesque country of the country Mauritius off the coast of East Africa in the Indian Ocean has initiated the first phase of its multi-part reopening plan. From July 15 to September 30, vaccinated visitors can participate in a system similar to the “Bubble Resort” program in Sri Lanka, where they can stay for 14 days in an accommodation of their choice and then travel freely around the island after the semi-quarantine is complete .

Asia Pacific

Phuket's Karon Beach the day before

Phuket’s Karon Beach the day before the start of the Phuket Sandbox tourism program.

Lillian Suwanrumpha / AFP / Getty Images

For the first time in over 15 months Thailand‘s popular vacation island Phuket allows vaccinated international travelers to enter the country without quarantine restrictions.

The “Phuket Sandbox” program is necessary to revive the country’s economy, Thai Tourism Minister Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn told CNN in an interview on the eve of the reopening.

Off the island, however, the country continues to battle its third and worst wave of Covid-19 since the pandemic began. On Thursday, Thailand reported a record 57 Covid-19 deaths and 5,533 new cases, mostly in Bangkok.

About in AustraliaMeanwhile, the country’s super-strict restrictions are getting even tighter.

The recent Covid outbreaks have put 10 million Australians in lockdown and now, starting July 14, the country will cut international arrivals in half to just over 3,000 a week. The new measure should apply at least until the end of the year.

Warning story of the week

Two men in Australia‘s Royal National Park were fined $ 760 each for breaking Sydney’s final lockdown after police found them naked and lost in the bush when they appeared to be escaping from a wild animal.

“Unbelievable, we saw two men sunbathing naked on a beach on the south coast,” New South Wales Police Commissioner Mick Fuller said in a press conference on Monday.

“They were frightened by a deer, ran into the national park and got lost. Not only did they need help from the State Emergency Service (SES) and the police to rescue them, they both got a ticket.”

Forrest Brown, Karla Cripps, Marnie Hunter, Lilit Marcus, Kocha Olarn, Lorraine Poupon, Angus Watson and Xiaofei Xu from CNN contributed to this story.


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