Travel news live: Latest updates as green and amber lists likely to be expanded

The government is “increasingly confident” that more countries will turn amber and green ahead of next week’s review of the traffic light lists for international travel.

The foreign secretary said that, although British travellers would have to wait to find out the updated lists, “the momentum forward is positive”.

Dominic Raab told Sky News that travel is expected to open up more as other countries progress with their vaccine roll-outs.

“We’ve done the job we had to do domestically and as we see other countries catch up if you like, I think we are increasingly confident that more countries will go either on amber or on to green,” he said.

The next review from the Department for Transport is expected on or around 4 August.

It follows the news that fully vaccinated US and EU travellers can swerve self-isolation when entering England from amber-list countries.

The update to the rules was announced yesterday, and will take effect from 4am on 2 August.

Travellers will follow the same protocol as double-jabbed Britons entering the UK from amber destinations: they can forgo quarantine but must take one pre-departure and one post-arrival Covid test.

“We’re helping reunite people living in the US and European countries with their family and friends in the UK,” said transport secretary Grant Shapps. “The changes will apply to fully vaccinated people with an FDA or EMA vaccine.”

Follow the latest travel updates below:


Fury grows at mandatory quarantine from France to UK

French politicians, the travel industry and prospective holidaymakers are expressing increasing anger at the country’s “amber plus” rating – which obliges all arrivals from France to go into quarantine.

On 16 July the special “traffic light” category was revealed by the UK government. Mandatory quarantine remains in place while fully vaccinated travellers from “regular” amber list countries can avoid self-isolation.

France’s Europe minister, Clément Beaune, tweeted: “The UK’s quarantine measures for France are excessive and incomprehensible in health terms.”

Simon Calder29 July 2021 13:59


Holidaymakers should choose companies that offer protection, says Which?

I response to Dominic Raab commenting that the government is “increasingly confident” that more countries will soon be added to the amber and green travel lists, Which? has warned holidaymakers to remain cautious when booking.

Rory Boland, Which? Travel Editor, said: “It’s positive to see the possibility of more countries being added to the government’s green and amber lists in the coming days. However, as we saw with France and now potentially Spain, countries with rising case rates can have further travel restrictions imposed on them with little or no notice.

“With the introduction of quarantine and expensive tests remaining a risk for some travellers, as well as thousands of people every day being told to self-isolate or testing positive, it’s vital that anyone considering a holiday chooses a provider that will let them rebook or claim a refund if coronavirus-related disruption prevents them from travelling.

“Holidaymakers should also get comprehensive travel insurance cover to protect them against these risks.”

Helen Coffey29 July 2021 13:50


Pakistan to ban air travel for travellers without a Covid certificate

Pakistan will ban air travel for anyone without a Covid-19 vaccine certificate from 1 August and will require all public sector workers to get vaccinated by 31 August, the government announced on Thursday.

From 1 August, unvaccinated people will no longer be allowed to enter government offices, schools, restaurants and shopping malls, said Asad Umar, who heads National Command and Operations Centre (NCOC), a military-run body that oversees the pandemic response.

Teachers and students above 18, public transport and retail staff will also be required to get vaccinated by the end of August.

Helen Coffey29 July 2021 13:20


Covid testing facility opens at St Pancras station

As anger grows over France’s unique “amber plus” category for travellers arriving to the UK, a new testing facility has opened at Eurostar’s St Pancras International rail station – London terminus for trains from Paris, Amsterdam and Brussels.

The Collinson facility offers rapid antigen tests starting at £32 and slower, more expensive PCRs for upwards of £66.

It is located on “The Grand Terrace” on the same floor as the champagne bar.

Simon Calder29 July 2021 12:05


Aer Lingus restarts flights from Bristol to Dublin

Aer Lingus will resume flights to and from Bristol to Dublin airport from Sunday 1 August.

Previously operated by Aer Lingus Regional, the route from the West Country will operate five days a week, on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday, with fares starting from £39.99 each way, including all taxes and charges.

Ireland reopened its doors for travel earlier this month and is the first country in Europe where fully vaccinated British citizens can visit without the need for any Covid-19 tests into or out of the country. There will also be no requirement to self-isolate if fully vaccinated.

Peter O’Neill, Aer Lingus Chief Operations Officer, said: “We are delighted to recommence flights from Bristol and welcome back our British customers on board now that travel restrictions have been relaxed, reconnecting friends and families that have been kept apart for too long.

“We are looking forward to serving our customers once again and providing them with a warm Aer Lingus welcome from airports across the UK.”

Helen Coffey29 July 2021 12:00


Airlines report surge in US-UK bookings

Airlines have reported a surge in bookings on flights from the US to the UK after the announcement that fully vaccinated travellers can forgo quarantine on entry into Britain.

Juha Jarvinen, Chief Commercial Officer at Virgin Atlantic, said: “We know there’s pent up demand to travel and our surge in bookings for US-UK travel reflect this.  The news that self-isolation for fully vaccinated US citizens arriving into the UK will be removed from 2 August has increased consumer confidence, allowing our customers to finally plan a much-needed reunion with family, friends and business colleagues.” 

Flight bookings are up by more than 100 per cent week on week, with bookings from New York to London increasing by nearly 250 per cent, compared to the previous week. 

He added: “We now urge UK Government to go further and move the US to the UK’s ‘green list’ and for the Biden administration to repeal the 212F proclamation for UK travellers. The UK is already falling behind US and EU and a continued overly cautious approach towards international travel will further impact economic recovery and the 500,000 UK jobs that are at stake.”

Helen Coffey29 July 2021 11:46


Six airports in Scotland closed due to strike

Six airports in Scotland have been closed to all but emergency flights due to a strike by air traffic controllers.

Benbecula, Dundee, Inverness, Kirkwall, Stornoway and Sumburgh airports are all closed due to an ongoing dispute about plans to introduce remote airport control towers.

The Prospect union said Thursday’s walkout marks an escalation in the industrial action which has been going on since January.

Highlands and Islands Airports (HIAL) managing director Inglis Lyon said: “We apologise for the inconvenience this day of strike action will cause.

“The disruption will impact our passengers, airline partners and the communities we serve at a crucial time in the recovery from the effects of the Covid pandemic.

“It is extremely disappointing that strike action is going ahead despite months of work with Prospect to agree a number of policies to support our colleagues’ transition to our Air Traffic Management programme.

“We are still in talks with the union on a commuting policy and appeal to Prospect to conclude those discussions before considering any further escalation of industrial action.”

Additional reporting by agencies

Helen Coffey29 July 2021 11:28


Scotland and Wales to relax quarantine rules for jabbed US and EU travellers

Fully vaccinated travellers from the US and EU will no longer have to quarantine when entering Scotland or Wales from an amber country.

The Scottish government announced the move hours after the UK government confirmed the rule change for England, and Wales also confirmed it would also follow suit.

Welsh First Minister Mark Drakeford said it would be “very hard” not to introduce the same relaxed measures.

The new rules will come into effect from 4am on 2 August.

Helen Coffey29 July 2021 11:13


Heathrow to give away free flights and experiences

Heathrow is celebrating the safe reopening of international travel and its 75th anniversary by giving away thousands of pounds worth of free flights and experiences to passengers travelling from the airport.

The airport has teamed up with more than 10 industry partners, including British Airways, Virgin Atlantic and Gordon Ramsay Plane Food, to launch its “Come Fly Again” promotion.

Other partners involved in the initiative include Blue Air, Fortnum & Mason, Leon, WH Smith, Macallan Whiskey and Cignpost Diagnostics, which will enhance the flight experience with free meals, gifts and travel essentials.

Helen Coffey29 July 2021 10:41


Minister rejects suggestion that rapid testing could release travellers from quarantine

The foreign secretary has rejected suggestions that rapid testing alone could be used to release travellers from quarantine once they’ve entered the UK.

Government adviser and immunologist Professor Sir John Bell said yesterday that data from January demonstrated that testing could be used to allow arrivals to forgo self-isolation.

But Dominic Raab told Sky News: “We are doing daily testing, but I think the answer to your question ‘why do it now not in say, two-and-a-half weeks’ time?’ is we know and we can project how many people broadly we’ll have double vaccinated and that is the level of reassurance we want to get to.

“I know it has been frustrating, I know it has been an inconvenience, there’s been lots of things in this pandemic that have been inconvenient.

“But the truth is the whole tide – whether it is domestic restrictions, international – is going in the right direction of opening but we do need to just be careful, make sure we are doing it at the right time.”

Additional reporting by agencies

Helen Coffey29 July 2021 10:32

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Try A Six Month Drawdown Instead Of Monthly

We are creatures of habit, especially when it comes to finances. Even looking back at your first allowance, likely that you received it on a regularly scheduled day of the week or month. The same goes for your first paycheck every two weeks: your car payment, the 15th of the month. Your rent or mortgage is due on the first of the month. And nowadays, we don’t even need to send a check; these payments are just automatically deposited or withdrawn on a regular monthly schedule.

A regular schedule makes most people happy. The comfort of knowing what to expect financially is a critical factor to our happiness. Then comes retirement.

A Healthy Financial Balance Starts With An Advisor

The day you have been working towards finally arrives. You no longer need alarm clocks, have deadlines, or regularly deposited paychecks. Our habits seem to change overnight. Especially our spending habits. Often with change comes uncertainty, even fear. Patience, grasshopper, it took you your entire life to reach this milestone and finding your financial rhythm in retirement takes time too.

To live happily on your life savings, it is wise for you to work with your financial advisor who has your best interests in mind. A trusted fiduciary is someone who will help you find the right cadence for your future withdrawals and deposits. Hopefully, by the time you retire, you have built a lifelong partnership with your wealth manager. This financial expert should know what makes you happy and how much money is needed to achieve your peace of mind.  

Allocating Wealth To Achieve Happiness

With any change, there is a learning curve. Knowing there will be a transition period will help relieve the uncertainty of your newly found freedom. How a person spends their money differs according to their passions, annual events, health, and sometimes unexpected expenses. So please don’t rely on what your friends or family did in their retirement. Turn to your financial advisor as this person will work with you to allocate your funds, whether they be savings, investments, or other sources of wealth.

The pace at which you spend your money is determined by the things you and your financial advisor have discussed over the years. By considering these factors, there are several roads to travel. The best way to find your financial road map for retirement is to have your wealth dispersed in some regular pattern that fits your lifelong dreams. After all, we are creatures of habit.

Retirement Payment Options

One option for many new retirees is a monthly deposit since most people are used to it when working. Other possible payments are semi-annual deposits – every six months – or even one annual payment. The goal is to find the frequency that works best for you.

Most often, the six-month allocation is preferred as our living expenses are not as linear in retirement as they were when working. The freedoms of retirement reveal themselves in the absence of a schedule – a time when spontaneity outweighs routine. Enjoy the unknown – take that unexpected road trip – you worked hard for it! It just means that when you return home, you might want to spend less until you get a handle on managing your irregular budget.      

The Benefits Of Six Month Installments

The six-month cadence has many advantages. For one, it takes into consideration the certainty of market volatility. This bi-annual allocation allows your financial advisor to manage your portfolio with more ease and less kneejerk decision-making.

The six-month cash reserve also helps manage unnecessary stressors that your lifelong financial partner is there to handle. After all, the goal of retiring is to do so in happiness and health.

Lastly, a bi-annual distribution of wealth allows for easier recalibration. These longer timeframes give a wealth manager an accurate picture of how you spend your money and budgeting correctly. If you notice a pattern of calling your financial advisor every four months, then most likely, a discussion is needed to assess if your retirement lifestyle is sustainable.

The Goal Is To Retire Happily

Financial advisors want their clients to retire with wealth, health, and happiness. If you find that your six-month payment lasts eight months or longer, perhaps it means you can live with more freedoms than you ever imagined! What a gift to see that your hard work paid dividends and that your dreams of traveling the world or buying that lake home are a reality.

Lifelong Dreams Do Come True

We all like a happy ending. Your financial advisor is your lifelong partner for helping you make investment choices that afford you the happiness you so richly deserve. So, as you start to consider how you want to spend your golden years, think about what truly makes you happy and healthy. Wealth is far more than what is in your retirement savings; it is also what is in your heart. A wealth manager with whom you are fully transparent is best able to set your sails true north.

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Travel news latest: UK airports face busiest weekend of the year as Britons flock to Europe

Britons desperate for an indulgent holiday overseas have forced pieces to go “through the roof,” according to a specialist agent.

Bookings at Shoreditch travel agent We Are Hush have increased by 500 per cent and prices for some plush properties have tripled in price, from £25,000 to £75,000 for a two-week break.

The Balearics, which include Mallorca, Ibiza, Menorca and Formentera, are the most popular holiday destinations for luxury getaways at the moment say travel experts from the Shoreditch-based company.

Oli Dannatt, CEO of We Are Hus said: “These last few months has been a real challenge for us, with the traffic light system constantly changing, bookings being made, then being cancelled and the ever-growing uncertainty of new Covid variants.

“However, with the roll out of vaccinations and the Government keeping Spain and the Balearics on the amber list, we are getting daily enquiries from our customers looking to get away later this summer, Ibiza and Mykonos being by far our most requested locations. “

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Your pictures: Keeping your pets safe in the sun

We have been inundated with pictures of your pets soaking up the sun or taking a welcome bath to keep cool. Thank you for all your photos – we’ve included a selection – and here is some advice for keeping them safe in the heat.

The Dogs Trust offers a number of tips for keeping your pet happy and healthy in warm weather:

  • Provide shade and water – Make sure your dog has access to shade and plenty of fresh water throughout the day. 

  • Plan your walkies – Walk your dog in the early morning or late in the evening when temperatures are cooler. This will reduce their risk of heatstroke. Be particularly careful if your dog is old, overweight or suffers from breathing difficulties. Exercise is the most common trigger for heat-related illness, so take care not to overexert your dog.

  • Do the seven second tarmac test – Tarmac can get very hot in the sun and could burn your dog’s paws. Check the pavement with your hand before letting your dog walk on it — hold your hand down for seven seconds, if it’s too hot for you, then it’s too hot for your dog’s paws. 

  • Don’t let them get burnt – Keep your dog out of direct sunlight where you can. Use pet-safe sun cream on exposed parts of your dog’s skin, like the tips of their ears and nose. Ask your vet for more advice if needed.

  • Think twice about any car trips with your dog – If you do have to travel with your dog, plan your journey. Consider travelling at cooler times of the day, identify places to take breaks, and avoid congested roads or busy times of day when you could get caught in traffic. Never leave your dog in a vehicle. In just 20 minutes, a dog could die in a hot car. Winding a window down is not enough to help your dog stay cool. 

George from Taunton is looking a little hot – owners of white cats have to be careful about sunburn. Credit: Kate Tebbutt

Cats Protection also offers advice for our feline friends:

  • Provide plenty of shade inside and out – a cardboard box can make a useful sunshade. Many cats love soaking up the sun but overexposure can lead to skin cancer.

  • If your cat has white fur, try keeping them inside between 10am and 3pm, when the sun is at its hottest. Speak to a vet about suitable sunscreen for cats, to ensure they don’t suffer from sunburn.

  • Keeping your cat cool inside your home is important too. Place fans around the house to keep the air circulating, remembering not to point the fan directly at your cat.

  • Another handy tip is to freeze a bottle of water, wrap it in a towel or pillowcase and place it somewhere your cat goes regularly. This stops them from feeling overheated during hotter spells. Make sure that your cat can get away from the bottle if they choose.

  • Make sure your cat keeps hydrated – avoid plastic bowls that can taint the taste of the water, keep them away from food bowls, keep the water topped up and maybe buy a cat fountain as they may prefer running water. You might also spread water bowls around the house so your cat has easy access.

You can also find out how to help wildlife in these extreme temperatures on the Dorset Wildlife Trust website.

Here are some of your pets coping in the hot weather:

Rebecca Smith’s solution to the sun? A shady spot for her pooch in her Polperro garden – and an ice bath. Credit: Rebecca Smith
This boxer from Midsomer Norton does like to be beside the seaside in this weather. Credit: Boxer on a pebble beach beside the sea
This paddling pool in Bodmin is just the thing for a parched pooch. Credit: Lynn Sarikaya
This Barnstaple family have found the perfect solution for hot dogs. Credit: Joe Ball
We’re not sure this kitty in Weston-super-Mare appreciated its cooling bath. Credit: Ben Peters
Sometimes a coat can be cooling – and sunglasses are always cool. Credit: Yasmin Longdon
Merlin didn’t want to wait until the pool in his Salisbury backyard was full. Credit: Kelly Macklin
Lola has certainly made herself comfortable in her pool in Yeovil. Credit: Kim Cawley
This lady is hogging the air con at her home in Bridgwater. Credit: Nikie Duddridge
The heatwave meant baths all round in Emily Powell’s house. Credit: Emily Powell
Come on in, the water’s wonderful! Credit: Sarah Hailstone
Dogs like Milo here can suffer from exhaustion in hot weather – but he’s bossing it on the hillside. Credit: Hannah Wallace
Sometimes you do everything to help out your pets and they prefer to do their own thing. Credit: Carolyn Davies

Today’s top stories in the West Country

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Golden Globes jury banned from accepting gifts and travel

The Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) is trying to restructure in the face of widespread criticism of diversity and transparency.

The exclusive group, made up of about 80 film journalists, has been accused of using the prestige associated with being nominated or winning a Golden Globe to gain privileged access and privileged access to the stars of the American film industry.

Under the new “gifts, travel, and conflict of interest policies,” HFPA members “cannot accept promotional materials or other gifts from studios, advertisers, actors, directors, or other persons associated with films and television programmes.”

“The Association of Foreign Journalists remains dedicated to the transformational change it outlined in the reform plan and timetable for May,” the group said in a statement to AFP. “Yesterday, the organization put in place new major measures to advance reform.”

Among the reforms mentioned, the organization established a complaints hotline (which will be investigated by an independent group), approved a new code of conduct and hired Diversity, Equality and Inclusion advisors.

The Golden Globes are considered one of the most important Hollywood awards, but their future has come into question. A letter signed by more than 100 industry professionals called on the HFPA in March to end “discriminatory behaviour, a lack of professionalism and ethics, and alleged financial corruption.” These issues added to earlier criticisms of the Time’s Up movement for gender equality.

Celebrities such as Scarlett Johansson and Mark Ruffalo found the reforms promoted by Golden Globe organizers slow and inadequate, while Tom Cruise returned his three awards in protest. Powerful studios such as Warner Bros, Netflix and Amazon have announced that they will not work with the HFPA until more significant changes are made.

In May, NBC canceled its broadcast of next year’s concert. Last month, two members resigned in protest of the association’s “toxic environment”.

“We will continue to update the industry on the progress we have made as we vote on new bylaws that will create an inclusive, diverse, and accountable organization that our members, stakeholders, and partners will be proud of,” the Hollywood Association of Foreign Journalists noted.

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10 of Croatia’s best spots for a crowd-free summer holiday | Croatia holidays

Last summer, visitors who managed to make it to Croatia had a taste of what the country was like before the days of mass tourism. And it tasted good. But while honeypots such as Dubrovnik were unrecognisably quiet, there have always been parts of the country where you don’t have to wade through crowds.

Places where things move at a less hurried pace, where Croatian life can be savoured, where you get a flavour of what the Dalmatians call fjaka – the art of doing nothing. These islands and mainland destinations are what you want in a post-lockdown escape: peace, beauty and the chance to discover why Croatia is such an enticing country.

Croatia map


It’s hard to move at a fast pace on this island in the Šibenik archipelago – it has banned cars, so you’ll have to walk or cycle. As the island is only eight square kilometres, that’s not much of a trial. A half-hour ferry ride from the city of Šibenik takes you to the island’s only village. Not only is Zlarin covered in greenery, but it stepped up green credentials two years ago by becoming the first island in Croatia to ban single-use plastics.

Zlarin harbor.
Zlarin harbor. Photograph: Panther Media GmbH/Alamy

What to do
Zlarin was once known for its coral diving, which you can tell from its coral shops and a tiny coral museum that’s open in the summer. Smothered in cypress, olive, almond and fig trees, it is a place for hiking and kayaking to secluded beaches, perhaps trekking up to its highest point, Klepac, at 169 metres, and taking in views of Velebit mountain. From Zlarin it’s a 15-minute ferry ride to the even sleepier island of Prvić, whose beaches make an agreeable day trip. Pop into the entertaining museum devoted to Faust Vrančić, local Renaissance man, inventor and early parachute pioneer.

Where to stay
Stone Houses Zlarin (from €90) are two attractively renovated village houses with balconies, terraces and lots of exposed brick. House Nana has three bedrooms but can squeeze in 10 people, while House Vana has two bedrooms with capacity for eight. Just 200 metres from the harbour, Apartments Katina (from €35) has three simple apartments for two, and a fourth that sleeps four, all with terraces.

Where to eat
Konoba Aldura, right in front of the marina, serves generous platters of grilled fish and seafood and has sea views. Set back further in the village, Konoa Prslika has a stone terrace with olive trees to go with its Mediterranean menu, including grilled langoustines and octopus cooked over a wood fire.


A sunset promenade on the Primošten’s Adriatic coast.
A sunset promenade on Primošten’s Adriatic coast. Photograph: Joachim Bago/Alamy

On the coast road between Split and Šibenik – but bypassed by an inland motorway – Primošten has one of Croatia’s most photogenic old towns, on its own small island. The jumble of medieval houses is connected to the mainland via a causeway, while a neighbouring promontory covered in pines is home to the area’s best beaches.

What to do
While you’re wandering through the stepped streets of the old town, head uphill to the 15th-century church of Sveti Juraj (St George) and take in the views. The little promontory that sticks out like a thumb is ringed by the pine-backed beaches of Raduča – the smaller of which has views of the old town. Endless vineyards cover much of the landscape – it is home to the indigenous and full-bodied babić grape. Call Prgin Winery and pop in for a tasting. In spite of Primošten’s laid-back feel, the municipality is home to one of Dalmatia’s biggest nightclubs, Aurora, just a few miles away from the old town.

Where to stay
Facing Mala Raduča beach, Zora Hotel (half-board doubles from €96) has airy rooms with balconies and sea views, an outdoor pool and sauna. Villa Koša (from €70) near the entrance to Primošten’s harbour has 14 apartments with kitchens, balconies and sea views.

Where to eat
In the old town is Agape Kitchen & Wine, which offers Dalmatian small plates as well as grilled spiny lobster (a local speciality) and the rich beef dish of pašticada with gnocchi. Grab a seat on the sea-facing terrace of Konoba Toni by the marina for big plates of grilled fish.


Fažana harbour.
Fažana harbour. Photograph: Master2/Getty Images

This small port on Istria’s southwestern coast isn’t exactly off the tourist radar – it’s the departure point for boat trips to the Brijuni Islands national park. But with Istria’s big-hitters Pula and Rovinj only 15 and 30 minutes away respectively, family-friendly Fažana tends to get overlooked. In this delightful fishing port you can get a more relaxed taste of Istria.

What to do
Fažana’s appeal is its mellow atmosphere and long, pebbly beaches. Its medieval centre is heralded by the 15th-century church of Saints Cosmas and Damian, and look out for the portico-fronted 14th-century Church of Our Lady of Mount Carmel. A boat trip to the Brijuni Islands (only 15 minutes) is a must. More than a dozen islands form the archipelago, but excursions go to Veli Brijun, the former summer playground of Tito – and, before him, the Habsburgs and the Romans.

Where to stay
Villa Mihaela (from €30) has five bright apartments with terraces in a large house in a residential area about a 10-minute walk from the beach. There’s also a pool, bike rental and a communal outdoor kitchen for barbecues. Set in a restored 16th-century townhouse in the centre of Fažana, Heritage Hotel Chersin (B&B from £105) has pretty rooms with exposed stone walls, and the garden restaurant is just as attractive.

Where to eat
At Konoba Batana by the harbour, soak up sea views from its covered terrace. The sharing fish and meat platters offer excellent value. Book ahead for a table at Konoba Beccaccia, a country restaurant a few miles out the town. The giant hearth is where much of the cooking is done: steaks of black angus beef, along with meat cooked slowly under hot embers in a bell-shaped pot called a peka. The owners also run an apartment complex on the site, with an outdoor pool.

Dugi Otok

Telašćica nature park, Dalmatia, Croatia
Telašćica nature park. Photograph: Getty Images

Dugi Otok means “long island” – it straggles along for 43km but is not much more than 4km wide. The most beautiful island of the Zadar archipelago (and about an 80-minute ferry ride from Zadar), Dugi Otok has an intoxicating wildness about it, with only a few tiny villages and a fragrant landscape of wild herbs, pines, fig trees and olive groves.

What to do
This is the place to kick back and enjoy two of the Adriatic’s loveliest sights. Telašćica nature park is an oddly shaped bay with six islets within and another 13 surrounding it – and a saltwater lake as well. Climb the cliffs for views of the Kornati national park to the south; and cycle, hike, swim, go scuba diving or just sail and kayak around the bay. Access is easiest by boat excursion from Dugi Otok’s largest settlement, Sali.

Further north is Sakarun (or Saharun) beach, a sheltered cove of white sand which often appears on lists of Croatia’s most beautiful beaches. Less well known is the pine-fringed Brbinjšćica Bay, from where you can explore the blue depths of the Dragon’s Eye and Golubinka sea caves.

Where to stay
Apartmani Vesna Giro (from €75) has two waterside apartments in Soline, both with two bedrooms, sea-facing terraces, a barbecue and mooring for boats. Hotel Maxim (half-board doubles from €138) is one of four hotels in the Hoteli Božava complex near the ferry port in Božava. Stylish rooms with balconies overlook the sea, as does the outdoor pool.

Where to eat
Enjoy views of Veli Rat’s marina from the terrace of Konoba Lanterna, where grilled calamari, octopus and lobster are among the specialities. Konoba Trapula on Sali seafront offers Adriatic favourites such as cuttlefish-ink risotto and octopus salad, along with grilled sea bass and steaks.


Slanica beach on Murter island.
Slanica beach on Murter island. Photograph: Patstock/Getty Images

The largest island in the Šibenik archipelago is the easiest to reach, thanks to the little lift bridge at Tisno, a small village that straddles Murter and the mainland. While Tisno was put on the map thanks to the dance festivals that take place in July and August (and which are scheduled to restart this year), Murter has always been more of a low-key place.

What to do
Murter town is an excellent base for boat trips to the Kornati national park, an archipelago of 89 islands, all off-grid and with an otherworldly, barren beauty. Otherwise, hit the beaches, almost of all of which are rugged and rustic. Slanica is the busiest, but head further along the island’s west coast for rocky and pebbly bays ringed with pine and olive trees, such as Kosirina and Čigrada.

There’s fascinating history, too, among the olive groves and scrubby hills. Wander through the remains of an ancient Roman city at Colentum archaeological park, and discover Murter’s rich maritime history at the small but compelling Betina Museum of Wooden Shipbuilding.

Where to stay
Hotel Ana Murter (doubles from €119) on the west coast has colourful rooms with terraces facing the sea, with a rocky beach just a few metres away. Overlooking Betina’s marina, Lantina Apartments (from €45) has a selection of apartments, all with balconies, though it’s worth splashing out for one with a sea view. There’s also a villa with two separate apartments.

Where to eat
Fine Food Murter does casual-chic as well as it does huge plates of grilled squid and black angus steak, as well as wok-fried beef and homemade pasta with truffles. For a beach restaurant, Reflektor on Slanica beach offers affordable seafood and meat platters, pastas and grilled mackerel.


Mali Bok beach at Orlec on Cres island.
Mali Bok beach at Orlec on Cres island. Photograph: Bernadett Pogacsas-Simon/Alamy

One of the two largest islands in Croatia along with neighbouring Krk, Cres remains untamed despite its proximity to Rijeka and Istria. It’s an island of two halves: the lush green northern half, Tramuntana, soon gives way to the barren karst landscape that covers many Adriatic islands. Although ferries run from Rijeka, Krk and Brestova on the Istrian coast – and the island of Lošinj is connected at the southern tip by a swing bridge – there’s still a sense that Cres is out of the way.

What to do
Set in a deep harbour, Cres town is a pleasing collection of Venetian townhouses squeezed around tiny squares and along narrow alleyways. There’s a long pebbly beach in Cres town, but quieter ones further south in the small villages of Valun and Lubenice. At the island’s southern tip, just before the bridge to Lošinj, is Osor, where public art is scattered around Venetian buildings.

It’s the outdoors that draws many visitors: hiking trails meander through oak forests and along ridges with Adriatic views everywhere you look. Follow the trails to the Beli Visitor Centre, where a wildlife sanctuary devoted to rescuing rare griffon vultures is one of the island’s highlights.

Where to stay
Pansion Tramontana (B&B from €80) in Beli is handy for the Beli Visitor Centre, and the owners also run a dive centre from Beli beach. The ACI Marina (from €67) in Cres town has nine smartly furnished apartments, some with balconies or terraces, and the price includes access to a fitness centre.

Where to eat
Cres produces some of Croatia’s most delicious lamb, and the rustic Konoba Bukaleta in the inland village of Loznati is one of the best places to try it, roasted or grilled. In Osor, Konoba Bonifačić serves platters of grilled fish and lamb stews in a cosy garden.

Pelješac peninsula

Orebić on the Pelješac peninsula.
Orebić on the Pelješac peninsula. Photograph: Ivan Coric/Alamy

The oyster beds of Mali Ston and the peninsula’s hilly vineyards that produce robust plavac mali, dingač and postup reds have turned Pelješac into a foodie magnet. And Game of Thrones fans come to visit Ston’s 14th-century defensive walls, which masqueraded as King’s Landing in the fantasy drama. This sinuous peninsula that stretches north of Dubrovnik for 90km also has fabulous beaches tucked among its tree-fringed coves and bays.

What to do
Orebić, the largest settlement, is handy for ferries to Korčula, but there’s also a 15th-century Franciscan monastery, the lovely Trstenica beach and the challenging 961-metre summit of Sveti Ilija looming over the town.

The winding main road forming Pelješac’s spine helpfully signposts boutique wineries offering tastings (booked ahead preferably), including Vinarija Bartulović (which also has a cottage to rent), Matuško and Mikulić (which also owns an aparthotel, restaurant and campsite in Orebić).

Despite their popularity, the twin villages of Ston and Mali Ston are hard to ignore, with their neat collection of old stone houses, oyster beds, vast saltpans and those magnificent walls that go on for 3km.

Where to stay
Set on the waterfront in Viganj west of Orebić and built of creamy Dalmatian stone, Heritage Boutique Hotel (doubles from €163) has stylish rooms with exposed beams and brick, as well as a seawater pool facing the sea. Mimbelli (B&B doubles from €68) on Orebić’s seafront is full of charm, a large stone guesthouse with five colourful rooms (three with a sea view) and an attractive restaurant.

Where to eat
Unless you really hate oysters, you can’t pass up the chance to sit on the terrace at Bota Šare in Mali Ston’s harbour and treat yourself to a platter (it also does great pasta). In a hillside above Orebić – with dreamy views of the sea, especially at sunset – is Agroturizam Kapor, a family-run, rustic restaurant that specialises in cooking meat under a peka. Order a day in advance so as not to miss out.


Statue of the ninth-century leader Branimir of Croatia in Nin town.
Statue of the ninth-century leader Branimir of Croatia in Nin town.
Photograph: Marcos Welsh/Getty Images

Geographically and culturally, Nin packs in a lot for such a small place. In medieval times, this compact town 16km north-west of Zadar was the seat of Croatia’s kings and archbishops, and has a definite fairytale quality about it. Its old town is set on a tiny islet within a bay almost enclosed by a sandy spit, joined to the mainland by two low stone bridges. Saltpans and sandy beaches surround this little oddity, with the Velebit mountains brooding in the background to add more of an air of strangeness.

What to do
Swim and laze – or go kitesurfing – in the shallow waters of Nin’s sandy beaches, including the 1km sandy spit of Žrdrijac. The Queen’s beach is beside a large mud bath, so expect to see people plastered with mineral-rich mud. In the old town, the simple, austere Church of the Holy Cross dates from the ninth century and is believed to be the oldest in the country.

Nin’s long history, including its ancient Greek and Roman periods, is clearly displayed in the nearby Nin Museum of Antiquities. Cross the bridge to reach the Solina Nin Salt Museum, which offers a fascinating look at the town’s 2,000-year-old salt industry.

Where to stay
On the edge of the old town on the seafront, Apartments Val (from €50) offer five breezy studios and one-bedroom apartments with balconies and sea views. There’s also a communal garden with a brick fireplace and a vine-shaded table. A minute’s walk from the water’s edge is Apartments Bella (from €45), with two modern studios and two one-bedroom apartments with terraces, along with a shared barbecue.

Where to eat
There’s a cluster of good places to eat in the old town. Restaurant Providenca has a nicely rustic garden where you can share big plates of grilled meats and seafood pasta. Restaurant Sokol also features homemade pasta and hefty grilled steaks as well as ninski šokol, the cured pork neck that’s a Nin speciality.

Kopački Rit

Marshes at Kopački Rit nature park.
Marshes at Kopački Rit nature park. Photograph: Dalibor Brlek/Alamy

One of Europe’s largest wetlands spreads around north-eastern Croatia between Osijek and the Serbian border. Thanks to the confluence of the Danube and Drava rivers, the vast floodplain of Kopački Rit is hypnotically beautiful. Nearly 300 bird species fly over this huge nature reserve of lakes, ponds, backwaters, flower-rich grasslands and oak forests.

What to do
Follow trails of raised wooden walkways through wildfowl-rich marshes and past a lake that’s a partly sunken forest. Rent a bike in nearby Bilje to cover more ground while looking out for herons, egrets and storks. Autumn is migration time, when even non-birders can’t fail to notice the mass migration of birds. Boat trips from Lake Sakadaš glide through otherwise inaccessible waterways, and you can also join a guided canoe tour. If you’re visiting in summer, bring mosquito repellent.

Kopački Rit is in the Baranja region of Slavonia, whose largest city, Osijek, is full of Habsburg architecture. Check out the cobbled squares and lanes in the baroque quarter, Tvrda.

Where to stay
Within walking distance of Kopački Rit is Didin Konak (B&B doubles from €30 a night), a traditional farm-like complex comprising a B&B, apartments, a restaurant and a wine cellar. In Osijek, the 12-room Boutique Hotel Tvrda (B&B doubles from around €100) is in a prime spot in the Tvrda quarter, and includes a rooftop pool, hot tub and sauna.

Where to eat
The region’s Croatian-Hungarian culinary melange is on full display at Restoran Kormoran, within the nature park. Paprika plays a starring role in freshwater fish dishes, particularly the fiš paprikaš with local carp or perch. It’s a similar story closer to Osijek at Čarda kod Baranjca by the River Drava, with dishes of goulash, grilled chicken and pork, as well as platters of river fish.


The Lovran seafront.
The Lovran seafront. Photograph: Ilija Ascic/Alamy

Like a mini version of the historic town of Opatija, Lovran has kept the Habsburg elegance that made the western coast of Istria the winter playground of the Austro-Hungarians. Grand Italianate hotels and townhouses tower over the Lungomare, the 12km seafront promenade that goes all the way past Opatija to Volosko.

What to do
When you’re not strolling along the Lungomare – one of the most pleasurable things to do – you can nose around the narrow alleys of Lovran’s old town and its tiny 14th-century Church of St George. Beaches here are either on concrete platforms or pebbly stretches, including the one at Medveja on the southern fringe. Lovran is also the starting point for hikes in the pine-covered hills of Učka nature park.

Where to stay
Set on the slopes of Učka, about a 10-minute drive from Lovran’s centre, Hotel Draga di Lovrana (B&B doubles from £131) was built as a Habsburg hunting lodge in 1908 and has utterly breathtaking views of the Kvarner Gulf. There’s an outdoor pool and also one of the seven Croatian restaurants to hold a Michelin star. If you want to be within seconds of the Lungomare, sea-facing Villa Atlanta (from €55) has modern studio apartments and an outdoor pool surrounded by gardens.

Where to eat
In the old town opposite the church, Lovranska Vrata has a lively terrace and serves shellfish platters and homemade seafood pasta. Najade on the seafront by the marina is a bit pricey, but you do get superb views to go with plates of grilled squid, scampi and sea bream.

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Irish people in Britain to get green light to visit friends and family | Transport policy

Up to 400,000 Irish people in Britain are to be given the green light to visit family and friends at home for the first time in six months as Ireland prepares to lift the strictest border controls in Europe.

Only those with essential reasons such as haulage, health or funeral attendance have been allowed to enter the country since the border restrictions were imposed in January.

Travel from Ireland to the rest of the EU is being opened on 19 July in line with bloc policy. The transport minister, Eamon Ryan, has indicated this will also include travel from Great Britain.

“I think travel with the UK will become much easier, particularly for those who are vaccinated from the 19th,” Ryan told RTÉ.

He also said those who have been double-vaccinated arriving from Britain will no longer have to quarantine, though this has yet to be confirmed as government policy.

Nonetheless, travel inquiries have surged as Irish families jump on the chance of a trip home.

Google trends showed a 550% rise in searches for Aer Lingus, with a 650% rise on Friday for the generic search phrase: “Travel to Ireland from UK Covid.”

A spokesperson for the ferry operator Stena Line said demand on the company’s routes was now “ahead of 2019 levels” and that it expected the same uptick on Wales-to-Ireland routes once the government officially loosened restrictions.

They added that the company had been told that NHS vaccinations would be shown the green light by the Irish government. “They confirmed to Stena Line that unrestricted leisure travel will be permitted starting 19 July by British residents who are fully vaccinated. NHS proof of vaccinations will be accepted.”

However, questions remain over the policy for the unvaccinated, leaving families with young children on tenterhooks.

“For others who don’t have the vaccination, they will have to continue to abide by the home quarantine and we will continue to review that,” the spokesperson said.

The relaxation of border restrictions comes as a relief to many Irish people in Britain, some of whom have not seen family for two years.

Some feel that the easing of border restrictions has unfairly focused on Irish people at home going on holidays rather than on the large diaspora in Britain, the US and elsewhere desperate to get home to see family.

“I do wish that somebody would speak up for the Irish in Britain as we are such a significant part of the population,” said Barry O’Leary, who lives in Somerset and hasn’t seen his father, a widower, since 2 January 2020.

“It’s terribly sad as it used to be so easy to hop on a plane from Bristol and be in downtown Dublin less than an hour and a half later. The person I feel most disappointed for is my Dad,” he added.

The updated Irish government advice states that children will still need a negative PCR test to enter. “Children between the ages of seven and 17 must have a negative RT-PCR test in order to travel into Ireland, even with fully vaccinated or recovered adults. Children aged six and under do not need to take a RT-PCR test prior to travelling to Ireland,” it says.

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Hit and Run Driver Charged after Striking a Bicyclist – Rehoboth – Delaware State Police

Date Posted: Sunday, July 11th, 2021

Rehoboth Ave and Church St

Rehoboth Beach – The Delaware State Police have charged a Millsboro man with Vehicular Assault and other traffic related offenses after he struck a bicyclist and left the scene.

The incident occurred around 4:50 p.m. Saturday July 10, 2021 when a 20-year-old Rehoboth woman was riding her bicycle on the westbound shoulder of Rehoboth Beach Ext. (SR1A), just west of Church Street. Derek M. White, 46 of Millsboro, was operating a 2015 Jeep Wrangler westbound on SR1A just behind the bicyclist. White failed to maintain his travel lane and entered the westbound shoulder where the front of the Jeep struck the rear of the bicycle. As a result of the impact, the cyclist was thrown from her bicycle and landed in the entrance to the Henlopen Square shopping complex. The female bicyclist was treated on scene by EMS and then flown by Delaware State Police Aviation (Trooper 2) to Christiana Medical Center with serious injuries.

After the collision, the Jeep fled the scene and continued traveling westbound where it was ultimately located by a witness in the parking lot of Grand Rental Station on Hebron Road. Troopers responded to that location and took Derek White into custody without incident. A DUI investigation ensued and White was transported back to Troop 7 where he was charged with the following:

  • Vehicular Assault 1st (Felony)
  • Leaving the Scene of a Collision Resulting in Injury
  • Driving While Suspended or Revoked
  • Failure to Have Insurance Identification in Possession
  • Driving a Vehicle Under the Influence of Drug
  • Failed to remain within a single lane
  • Failure to Report a Collision Resulting in Injury or Death

Derek White was arraigned at JP3 and committed to Sussex Correctional Institution on $3,500.00 cash bond.

Derek M White

Traffic on Rehoboth Avenue Ext. near Church Street was impacted for approximately 2.5  hours while the collision was investigated and cleared.

Anyone with information regarding this collision should contact Corporal K. Koff at Delaware State Police Troop 7 by calling 302-644-5020. Information may also be provided by calling Delaware Crime Stoppers at 1-800-TIP-3333 or via the internet at .

If you or someone you know is a victim or witness of crime or have lost a loved one to a sudden death and are in need of assistance, the Delaware State Police Victim Services Unit/Delaware Victim Center is available to offer you support and resources 24 hours a day through a toll free hotline 1800 VICTIM-1. (1-800-842-8461). You may also email the unit Director at

You can follow the Delaware State Police by clicking on:

Delaware State Police Official Web Site




Please tell us how we’re doing via our Citizen Satisfaction Survey.

Presented by Public Information Officer, Master Corporal Gary Fournier

Released: 071121 0810


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Cool travel escapes: Flee the heat at these places in the summer of 2021


Summer travel can be so inviting. There are fewer clothes to pack. Days are long for outdoor play. Outdoor dining abounds. And you can’t overstate the simple joy of basking in the sun’s soothing rays.

But sometimes you can get way too much of a good thing in summer as people in the US Northwest can tell you. Too much heat is not just unpleasant. It’s deadly.

Whether you’re playing it safe or simply prefer relatively cooler temps over hot spots, here are nine places that usually make for cool travel escapes in summer. Keep in mind all the cautionary guidance about travel – especially if you’re not fully vaccinated or you’re crossing international borders.

Mountainous Switzerland always provides a cool spot somwhere. Dent Blanche, left, is next to the Matterhorn in the Swiss Alps.

Fabrice Coffrini/AFP/Getty Images

Mountainous Switzerland always provides a cool spot somwhere. Dent Blanche, left, is next to the Matterhorn in the Swiss Alps.

Wedged in the snow-capped Alps, Switzerland recently opened to US travelers and is accessible to Europeans and selected other nations around the world.

Should the major cities such as Geneva, Zurich and Bern become too hot for you (which is unlikely, especially at night), escape to the higher altitudes for an Alpine hike. Even in early July, temperatures on the 5 Lakes Walk near the Matterhorn can stay below 10 C (50 F) for the high.

If you want something less strenuous, take a boat tour of idyllic Lake Brienz.

Alcatraz Island can be seen from the Russian Hill neighborhood in San Francisco.

Brontë Wittpenn/The San Francisco Chronicle/Getty Images

Alcatraz Island can be seen from the Russian Hill neighborhood in San Francisco.

“The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco.”

The quote oft-attributed to Mark Twain is nice summation of the weather there. Summer isn’t even its warmest season – that honor goes to fall. While much of the Northwest has been baking this year, the city’s microclimate has kept things cool.

You can explore neighborhoods such as hilly Russian Hill (home to crazy crooked Lombard Street) or head out to nearby Muir Woods for some serious tree time. Don’t forget a light jacket.

A cool sight: Spencer Glacier in Chugach National Forest.

Ray Bulson/Alamy

A cool sight: Spencer Glacier in Chugach National Forest.

Alaska isn’t necessarily the year-round ice block you may think it is. It can get surprisingly warm at times in Anchorage. But compared with the Lower 48, it’s still usually a relatively cool escape in summer. (In early July, CNN Weather forecasts the hottest day to be 63 F (17 C).

Go bike riding on the Tony Knowles Coastal Trail or explore wild areas such as Chugach State Park (located mostly within the boundaries of Anchorage) or the bit farther away in Chugach National Forest.

Seljalandsfoss waterfall is a spectular sight in southern Iceland.

Sven-Erik Arndt/Arterra/Universal Images Group/Getty Images

Seljalandsfoss waterfall is a spectular sight in southern Iceland.

With a name like Iceland, you’d better be cool – unless you’re near a lava flow or soaking in a hot spring. Average July highs in the capital of Reykjavík are 14 C (57 F).

Take advantage of summer to head out to the highlands, which are often closed again by late September, to see waterfalls and glaciers. Or roam about Reykjavik looking for unusual delicacies such as kæstur hákarl (“treated shark”) or Svið, or smoked sheep’s head.

A skier competes during DXB Snow Week at Ski Dubai last year.

Francois Nel/Getty Images

A skier competes during DXB Snow Week at Ski Dubai last year.

No, we haven’t lost our minds. Dubai is indeed a hot desert emirate. But it offers year-round snow skiing and other winter activities. How can that be?

It’s all thanks to Ski Dubai. When you’re rolling in oil money, you can build a mammoth indoor ski park and draw folks from all over the world. Along with the skiing, you can have penguin encounters, ride snow slides or take a chair lift for a bird’s-eye view.

If you get too cold, warm up with a sand safari.

You can retreat to destination malls such as CentralWorld in Bangkok and spend a full day indoors and never get bored.

Lauren DeCicca/Getty Images

You can retreat to destination malls such as CentralWorld in Bangkok and spend a full day indoors and never get bored.

Online shopping has delivered a big blow to many malls, but there are big destination malls in the USA and around the world that can still satiate your shopping and entertainment appetites in glorious, air-conditioned comfort.

Minnesota’s Mall of America is a kids’ climate-controlled playground paradise with everything from an aquarium to the Nickelodeon theme park.

Aforementioned Dubai sports some of the most luxurious (and therefore comfortable) malls in the world, including Mall of the Emirates and Dubai Mall.

Even hot, steamy Bangkok offers a cool respite if you go to malls such as CentralWorld, where there’s an ice skating rink.

Stay aware of any local mask-wearing requirements when you visit enclosed public locations. Even if you’re fully vaccinated, some locations still might ask you to wear a face mask.

You can see stalagmites, stalactites and formations called curtains in the Postojna Caves.

Jure Makovec/AFP/Getty Images

You can see stalagmites, stalactites and formations called curtains in the Postojna Caves.

Caves have long provided a natural escape from extremes of heat and cold, with most maintaining a nearly consistent temperature year-round. So when it’s hot on the surface, head underground. A few ideas:

Mammoth Cave National Park, Kentucky: The longest known cave system in the world has an average temperature of 54 F (12 C). Bring a jacket for your tour.

Eisriesenwelt Cave, Austria: You go from cool to downright cold here. This is an ice cave and one of Salzburg’s favorite things.

Postojna Caves, Slovenia: See stunning formations from the comfort of an underground train.

An old stone bridge spans the Voidomatis River.

Antony Bouchagier/Alamy

An old stone bridge spans the Voidomatis River.

There are all kinds of fresh-water swimming holes around the world that provide an exhilarating plunge even when it’s insufferable hot on land. A couple of examples:

Barton Springs; Austin, Texas: Residents and visitors can escape the notoriously brutal Texas heat in this naturally fed pool, where the water is always 68 to 70 F (20 to 21 C). On a cold winter morning, the pool actually provides a relatively warm place to swim.

Voidomatis Springs, Vikos Gorge, Greece: These spring-fed pools can be found on the Voidomatis River, deep in the Vikos Gorge in northern Greece. Be aware they can run dry in late summer.

A couple walks the shore at Coast Guard Beach in Eastham on Cape Cod.

Craig F. Walker/The Boston Globe/Getty Images

A couple walks the shore at Coast Guard Beach in Eastham on Cape Cod.

Even if the sun is out in force, some beaches have cool water ocean currents that make for chill air and bracing – even shocking – dips. A few of them are:

Nazaré, Portugal: This charming spot on the Portuguese coast north of Lisbon is known for surfing, but the waves are generally biggest in winter. The Atlantic is usually calmer here in summer. The water temperature in early July was 17 C (62 F).

Cape Cod, Massachusetts: A favorite for New Englanders and beyond, the average July water temperature on quaint Cape Cod is around 67 F (19 C). That’s a lot better than June, when the average is just 59 F (15 C).

Bryher; Isles of Scilly, UK: Bryher has rough Atlantic waves on one side, but calm, sandy beaches on the other. It’s about 40 kilometers (25 miles) off the southwestern tip of Cornwall. The water is pretty cold for long swims unless you’re very hardy, but it doesn’t take long to cool off with a dip here.

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