Top 10 green list holidays

Here in England, travel just got a little bit easier, with no quarantine needed on the way back from green list countries. Fully vaccinated travellers are also able to skip the quarantine requirement for amber list destinations, although you’ll still have to abide by testing requirements for entry into your holiday destination and your return home.

Travellers can keep up to date with the regulations on the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) website. We recommend that our travellers based outside England check their own government’s specific advice.

With that in mind, here are our best green list holidays (and a sneaky amber list entry) with no quarantine required.

1. Family activities in Korcula, Croatia

Croatia is one of our favourite family holiday destinations. Its string of rocky islands – complete with tiny fishing ports, bountiful seafood and (for the adults) vineyards – offers all kinds of adventures. Kids will love kayaking and snorkelling in the crystal-clear Adriatic Sea, while hiking and cycling will keep adrenaline levels up on land.

When to go: April to October
Our top trip: Croatia family activity holiday, Korcula
All our trips: Croatia holidays
Read more: Croatia family travel guide

2. Self drive adventures in Iceland

For a small island, Iceland excels at big landscapes. Its thundering waterfalls, vast glacial valleys, towering geysers and sweeping black beaches littered with boulders of ice inspired Tolkien to write The Lord of the Rings. Self drive adventures give you the chance to explore at your own pace – but with the experts planning it all for you.

When to go: May to September. September to October or February to March for the Northern Lights
Our top trip: Iceland self drive holiday
All our trips: Iceland holidays
Read more: Iceland travel guide

3. Walking in Madeira

Levadas crisscross the lush Atlantic island of Madeira. Once used to bring water from the mountainous north-west to the sugar cane fields of the south-east, these old stone irrigation channels are perfect walking paths leading you through laurel forests, past waterfalls and up volcanic peaks with ocean views.

When to go: April to October
Our top trip: Madeira walking holiday
All our trips: Madeira holidays
Read more: Madeira travel guide

4. Culture & wildlife in the Faroe Islands

The Faroe Islands, Norway’s isolated archipelagic outpost in the North Atlantic, aren’t just volcanic cliffs and thundering seas. Faroese cuisine, uniquely crafted by centuries of prevailing wind, waves and a reliance on the islands’ natural resources, is experiencing something of a renaissance here. Awaiting you are a slew of restaurants using the ancient techniques (think smoking and drying) to produce fine dining food.

Best time to go: May to August
Our top trip: Faroe Islands self drive tour
All our trips: Faroe Islands holidays
Read more: Faroe Islands travel guide

5. Adventure in Dominica

The ‘Nature Island’ offers an alternative Caribbean – one full of rainforests instead of resorts and birds rather than all-you-can-eat buffets. Hiking is heaven here, with the island-long Waitukubuli National Trail linking waterfalls and forest gorges with hidden villages and black-sand beaches. Beyond the surf, coral reefs and bubbling volcanic underwater vents will have you swapping your sunbed for a snorkel.

When to go: February to April
Our top trip: Dominica adventure holiday
All our trips: Dominica holidays
Read more: Dominica travel guide

6. Family-friendly Malta & Gozo

The Romans, Byzantines, North African Arabs and Europeans have all left their mark on Gozo – Malta’s tiny, yet gloriously adventure-filled, archipelago neighbour. This island is wonderful for families. Rural guesthouses offer a peaceful retreat for parents and children alike after days of snorkelling, boat rides, swimming and rock climbing.

Best time to go: April to September
Our top trip: Gozo family activity holiday in Malta
All our trips: Malta and Gozo holidays
Read more: Gozo travel guide

7. Wildlife in the Falkland Islands

Warfare, not wildlife, might be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of the Falkland Islands. But beyond the political conflicts lie birds – lots of them – as well as elephant seals, orcas and dolphins. Perhaps one of the world’s greatest wildlife secrets, holidays to the Falklands give you the chance to spot endangered and endemic species like the rare striated caracara in rugged and remote landscapes.

Best time to go: October to March
Our top trip: Falkland Islands wildlife tour
All our trips: Falkland Islands holidays
Read more: Falkland Islands travel guide

8. Conservation in Romania

One of Europe’s last strongholds for wild bears, Romania’s Carpathian Mountains are a wild and beautiful step back in time. Here among the peaks lie Saxon villages where carts outnumber cars and where dark Transylvanian legends are inextricably entwined into the wooden houses and surrounding forests. Walking is wonderful here, with a chance to spot wildlife that includes bears, wolves and – if you’re lucky – golden eagles.

Best time to go: All year round
Our top trip: Carpathian Mountains holiday, conservation and culture
All our trips: Romania holidays
Read more: Romania travel guide

9. Wellness retreats in Barbados

Barbados may be one of the better-known Caribbean islands, but with a bit of local knowledge it’s easy to escape the frenetic overload of mass tourism. Wellness retreats tap into the naturally relaxed Bajan way of life, where breezy afternoons swaying in a hammock are complemented by holistic therapies and wholesome plant-based food.

Best time to go: December to April
Our top trip: Barbados holistic accommodation in the Caribbean
All our trips: Green list holidays
Read more: Caribbean travel guide

10. Small ship cruising in Greece

If you’re able to avoid quarantine by being fully vaccinated, Greece is a good option. This sneaky amber list entry has an economy reliant on tourism. Small ship cruising and sailing is one of the best ways to explore the myriad of islands dotting the Aegean and Ionian Seas – some a swathe of whitewashed homes; others forested with relics of the Byzantine and Ottoman Empires.

Best time to go: April to October
Our top trip: Luxury gulet cruise in the Aegean
All our trips: Greece holidays
Read more: Greek Islands travel guide
Written by Sarah Faith
Photo credits: [Page banner: Thibault Mokuenko] [1. Family activities in Korcula, Croatia: Jeff Holker Photography] [4. Culture & wildlife in the Faroe Islands: Tommy Kwak] [7. Wildlife in the Falkland Islands: Ian Parker] [10. Small ship cruising in Greece: MAX LIBERTINE]