Travel Health Information For Southern Europe

Southern Europe known to many as Mediterranean Europe or 'The Med' represents a group of sun drenched countries which boast a Mediterranean climate and offer stunning vistas featuring vineyards and long beaches. The region is abuzz with lively cities and provides a culturally diverse experience to amaze and fascinate any traveler.


In 2016 Spain hosted approximately 75.5 million visitors from around the world, with most arriving from the United Kingdom followed by France and Germany. Spain is a popular destination for travelers due to it being a cheap alternative when compared to other parts of Europe. Areas including Mallorca, Lanzarote, Menorca and the Costa del Sol are among the five cheapest places to visit particularly for those with a preference for a self catering styled holiday. In April 2017, Costa del Sol was named the third cheapest European destination for a summer holiday, with only the Algarve and Sunny Beach, Bulgaria, offering lower prices.



Europe’s most westerly country, Portugal is a magnet for golfers and sun seekers who in droves, make for the southerly region of Algarve with much of the remaining regions left untouched by tourism. Regions vary enormously in their weather, cuisine, architecture and wines, for those willing to step off the well worth path of their fellow travelers. A journey by road from north to south provides a rich bounty of different experiences.

The capital of Lisbon is a charmingly cobbled city where yellow trams rattle up and down the steep narrow streets, and you could be forgiven for thinking you've crossed back in time to the 18th century.

Southern France

When thinking of Southern France, the city of Nice instantly comes to mind however there are many more famous towns and cities to explore throughout the region including St Tropez, Cannes and Arles just to name a few. The region boasts an excellent road network and the rail system is excellent making travel through the South of France an easy adventure.


The region boasts a wonderful climate with long warm summer days stretching through to September and October. Tourists can find a rich variety of places to visit from chic resorts, sleepy old villages and astonishing historical monuments dating back to pre-Roman times. Unfortunately at the time of writing wildfires were sweeping through the area and over 12,000 people were evacuated from areas around the Côte d’Azur and the island of Corsica.


A holiday in Greece makes for an ideal location, particularly for lovers of the sun. Picturesque islands with long sandy beaches and sun bleached ruins feature throughout the coastline. There are an estimated 1,000 islands throughout Greece, 227 of which are inhabited by the locals making it difficult to choose which island destination best suits.

Between the months of June to September are considered the best times to travel to Greece, with sunny days and balmy nights being a highlight. The peak tourist season is of course during the hottest months of the year from July to August, so to avoid the crowds, visits to Greece are best scheduled in the months of June and September when the sea is warm enough to take a swim and the hotels are still open for business.


Malta, like the rest of the Mediterranean Europe is a destination favored by tourists for its sun and sea, with no shortage of either on offer for the traveler. Malta is blessed to receive more than 300 sunny days a year and the nation is surrounded by clear blue waters, some of which are the cleanest in the Mediterranean which is much enjoyed by visiting swimmers, snorkelers and divers.

Apart from its natural attractions, Malta boasts a density of historic sights unrivaled in the region. Unique prehistoric temples - some of the oldest stone buildings in the world feature. Any tourist to the region can also visit Roman catacombs, medieval towns, and the extraordinary architectural legacy of the Knights of St John.


The following information provides the traveler with a list of known exposure risks for those considering traveling to Southern Europe. Always consult with your Doctor before traveling overseas.

When heading away to any destination, older travelers should take the time to undertake and pre-prepare for their journey away from home. Different climates and conditions can sometimes pose a risk to travelers of any age, with many unknowingly placing themselves at risk of exposure to illness or disease.

Note: The following material has been provided for general informational purposes only. It is not intended to be relied on as a substitute for professional medical advice. No person should act, fail to act, disregard professional medical advice, or delay seeking professional medical advice on the basis of this material. The Travelnanna website, nor its representatives does not guarantee the accuracy, currency or completeness of any of this information and will not be liable for any loss, damage or injury directly or indirectly caused by this material or its use.


This very common infectious disease can now be prevented through immunization. Many people miss the disease in childhood only to have a significant illness as an adult.

Hepatitis A

This is a viral disease of the liver which is transmitted through eating contaminated food or drinking contaminated water.

Hepatitis B

This is a viral disease of the liver that is transmitted via blood, blood products or bodily fluids and is vaccine preventable.


Travelers go through crowded venues like airports, or on commuter transport. Influenza is the most common vaccine to prevent travel related illness. Vaccination against influenza is generally highly recommended.

Measles, Mumps, Rubella (MMR)

Vaccination is recommended for travelers born after 1966 who cannot confirm that they have received two doses of measles containing vaccine. Since 1990, this may have been the combination vaccine MMR (measles, mumps and rubella).

Meningococcal Disease

Meningococcal disease is a very serious bacterial infection which is often life-threatening. It may manifest as meningitis (inflammation of the lining of the brain)and/or septicaemia (blood poisoning).


Rabies is a deadly viral infection of the brain. Risk increases with extended travel and the likelihood of animal contact.

Tetanus, Pertussis, Diphtheria

Tetanus is caused by a toxin released by common dust or soil bacteria which enters the body through a wound. Diphtheria is a bacterial infection of the throat and less frequently, the skin. Pertussis or whooping cough (known as the 100 day cough in Chinese) is a highly infectious respiratory infection responsible for over 300,000 deaths annually, mainly in children. These three illnesses are preventable and covered in the same vaccine.

Tick-borne Encephalitis

Travelers who walk through infected areas during tick season would warrant vaccination against TBE. TBE vaccines are readily available in Europe but not in Australia or a number of other countries. Check with your local travel doctor before leaving home.

Traveler’s Diarrhoea

Up to 40% of tourists may develop three or more loose bowel motions a day within the first week of travel. A variety of germs can be responsible for this infection and a travelers may choose to pack products such as Gastro-Stop to remedy the problem quickly.


Sandra Hawkins

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