Madeira, an idyllic Portuguese archipelago in the North Atlantic Ocean, is waiving COVID-19 testing requirements for vaccinated travelers, describing the decision as a "vote of confidence in this new phase the world is going through."
Foreign visitors to the gorgeous island paradise will need to show an official vaccination certificate that includes vaccination dates and details, the Spanish publication Euro Weekly News reported.
Madeira, which is courting digital nomads, is also exempting anyone who can prove they've recovered from COVID-19 from pretravel coronavirus testing, and is working to ensure its own residents receive vaccinations.
Madeira — closer to the African coast than it is to Portugal — said it had already vaccinated more than 22,000 local residents and expects to have immunized 60 to 70% of its population by the end of the year.
Madeira has fared better than many other parts of the world during the pandemic, reporting fewer than 1,000 confirmed cases and two deaths. Anyone traveling to Madeira is currently required to present a negative COVID-19 test taken within 72 hours of their flight, or to test on arrival and quarantine until those results become available.
U.S. citizens without EU residency are still banned from travel to Portugal.
Meena Thiruvengadam is a Travel + Leisure contributor who has visited 50 countries on six continents and 47 U.S. states. She loves historic plaques, wandering new streets and walking on beaches. Find her on Twitter and Instagram.
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