The 10 most in-demand holiday destinations for 2022 – and how to visit them

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Where to go

Why not discover the Italian region with beautiful landscapes and ancient villages – but hardly any tourists. We’re talking about Abruzzo. Italy expert Tim Jepson explains: “Having been ignored for too long, travellers are finally learning that its mountains, still the haunt of wolves and bears, are the finest in Italy outside the Alps, that its coast is gloriously wild in places, and that many of its ancient villages are timeless and traditional in the best sense. And if visitor infrastructure is still in its infancy – part of the region’s charm, of course – newer destination hotels are gradually opening, and the food, as ever in Italy, is superlative. 

“The new Tuscany? The new Umbria? Not quite. But a place to visit now before everyone else? Definitely.” Read his guide to the region here, plus the best hotels in Abruzzo.

Back to normal rating: 3/10

Italy has introduced a battery of measures in response to the omicron wave, with outdoor events in public spaces prohibited, and nightclubs closed. Masks are mandatory both indoors and – where social distancing is not possible (such as in city centres) – outdoors, while the use of FFP2 masks is compulsory on public transport, in theatres, concert halls and cinemas and for sporting events until at least March 31. One must assume these rules will be eased in the spring. 

The situation regarding vaccine passports is similar to France; only people with proof of vaccination, or who have recovered from Covid, can eat at indoor restaurants, go to the cinema or attend a sporting event. 


Greece

Around one in 10 Britons are planning a trip to Greece in 2022, according to Abta, making it the fifth most in-demand destination. 

Can I visit?

Yes. More than most, tourism-reliant Greece has fought to keep its borders open. As things stand, both vaccinated and unvaccinated travellers can visit if they present evidence of a recent negative test. 

Where to go

Where to start? Greece is packed with gorgeous islands. My favourite is Tinos, a 20-minute ferry ride from better-known Mykonos but mercifully untouched by mass tourism. It offers everything that makes Greece such a perennial favourite with British holidaymakers. Laid-back lifestyle, fresh, simple cuisine, glorious beaches and rugged scenery, but without the crowds. A week there and you’ll wonder why anyone bothers with Mykonos at all. For more quiet Greek islands see our guide. 

Back to normal rating: 6/10

Masks are mandatory in both indoor and crowded outdoor settings. Proof of vaccination is required to enter restaurants, non-essential shops and museums. However, enforcement is varied; don’t expect little island tavernas to be as vigilant as city-centre establishments. 


Portugal

Tourism to Portugal fell by 83 per cent during the first seven months of 2021, compared with 2019, but it will be keen for a return to tourism prosperity this year. Overseas arrivals had risen dramatically to around 24 million in 2019 – up from 10 million in 2015. 

Can I visit?

Yes. Like Greece, Portugal has been keen to keep the tourist cash rolling in and Britons can visit regardless of their vaccination status. They will, however, need to show evidence of a negative test. 

Where to go

The Alentejo region offers both wide plains scattered with medieval hilltop towns, Roman remains, olive groves and vineyards, as well as a coastline dotted with unspoilt, under-the-radar beaches. 

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