Deserted beaches, free Covid tests – and no masks: Europe’s ‘safest’ destinations lure British tourists

Richard Orange

The Telegraph

August 1, 2020, 9:39 AM

Norway has more coastline than Germany, Italy, Spain, Greece, Sweden and France combined and ten times as many islands as Greece, the country’s tourism agency is boasting in its new advertising campaign for British holidaymakers forced to rethink travel plans in light of Europe’s ‘second wave’.

Space to social distance rather than sunshine is at the core of the new marketing campaigns launched by a string of unusual holiday destinations competing to lure Brits taking last-minute summer breaks.

With just three cases per 100,000 people over the last fortnight, and a population density of less than six people per square mile, Norway has a good claim to being both the safest destination, and the most unlikely to see Britain impose surprise quarantine rules.

Hardanger Fjord in Norway
Hardanger Fjord in Norway

It is 2nd only to Estonia in the number of Codiv-19 cases.

Estonia has registered even fewer infections, 2.6 per 100,000, making it is the safest destination in Europe currently completely open to British tourists. Finland and Hungary, on 2.6 and 2.4 respectively, still impose restrictions.

There is a caveat, however: it’s worth remembering that if the UK’s 14-day cumulative rate of new infections rises from today’s 12.6 per 100,000 to 16, visitors to Estonia will face quarantine, and if it hits 20, visitors to Norway will.

Like Norway’s, Estonia’s tourism agency is pushing the appeal of its deserted countryside, 2,000 islands, and its low infection rate.

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