Novel Coronavirus - COVID-19
The following is information for visitors. Business owners (restaurants, vacation rentals, hotels, attractions, etc.) please click here.
Internationally, in late 2019, cases of the Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV / COVID-19) began to emerge. COVID-19 is believed to having originated in Hubei region of China. The symptoms of COVID-19 are similar to influenza, and include cough, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, or at least two of the following symptoms: chills, shaking with chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat, and loss of taste or smell. Symptoms can range from mild to severe and may appear up to two weeks after exposure to the virus, according to the CDC.
Some people with COVID-19 don't display any symptoms. It is typically more severe than common flu, particularly to the elderly and those with pre-existing health conditions. If you develop symptoms and have been in close contact with a person known to have COVID-19 or have recently traveled to country or region with widespread cases of COVID-19, you should isolate yourself and contact your healthcare provider. The WHO, CDC and other health organizations are continually monitoring and updating the public on a very regular basis.
Charlotte County beaches, parks, and fishing piers are open with some restrictions. Restrooms at Englewood Beach and Port Charlotte Beach are open. Please follow Centers for Disease Control guidelines for social distancing. Gatherings of 10 or more are not permitted under Gov. Ron DeSantis’ executive order. Please check the Charlotte County BoCC page for local closures and Florida Travel Information from VISIT FLORIDA for more information. Travel restrictions exist and may also be found on the VISIT FLORIDA Florida traveler information page as well.
Please refer to the following resources for the most up-to-date information and guidance:
July 28, 2020: Charlotte County Commission adopted a face covering resolution.
Resolution 2020-100 states, “every person living, working, visiting or doing business in unincorporated Charlotte County, including government buildings, shall, in the absence of social distancing, wear a face covering in any indoor location, other than a home or residence.”
The resolution includes exceptions stated in the Florida Surgeon General's Public Health Advisory of June 20, 2020. The advisory is available on the county website.
Signs will be posted at county facilities and distributed to businesses via the Charlotte County, Englewood and Punta Gorda chambers of commerce.
Visit www.CharlotteCountyFL.gov for additional COVID-19 information.
July 8, 2020: The City of Punta Gorda passed a face covering emergency ordinance.
Face coverings are required indoors in all public buildings and businesses in the City of Punta Gorda for all people over the age of two. Exceptions are made in the ordinance and include for persons continuously observing social distancing, persons communicating with an individual who is hearing impaired who needs to see the mouth of the person speaking to facilitate communications, for persons for whom a face covering causes impairment due to an existing health condition, and persons exercising while maintaining social distancing. The ordinance Ord 1944-2020, including a complete list of exemptions is available here.
Phase 2: Safe. Smart. Step-by-Step Plan for Florida's Recovery Goes into Effect Friday, June 5, 2020
On June 3, Governor Ron DeSantis issued Executive Order 20-139 announcing Phase 2 of Florida’s reopening plan following COVID-19.
The plan allows for further reopening of the state beginning Friday, June 5. All counties, with the exception of Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach, may move into Phase 2 (Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach counties may participate on a petition basis).
Of interest in Phase 2:
- Bars and other vendors licensed to sell alcoholic beverages may operate at 50% of indoor capacity and maximum outdoor capacity as long as social distancing guidelines are followed. Nightclubs are still restricted from reopening.
- Restaurants can serve at their bars with social distancing.
- Retail shops may operate at maximum capacity.
- Gyms may operate at maximum capacity.
- Entertainment venues—including movie theaters, playhouses and auditoriums—may operate at 50% indoor capacity.
- Pari-mutuel facilities, housing legal gambling machines, may reopen as permitted by local and county officials.
- Other services deemed “personal,” including tattoo parlors, massage and tanning salons, may resume operations.
- Answers to frequently asked questions relating to Governor DeSantis’ Executive Order 20-112 are available HERE.
- CDC: Coronavirus Disease 2019 (English)
- CDC-Enfermedad del Coronavirus 2019 (Español)
- Johns Hopkins CSSE Global Interactive Map (data sources: WHO, CDC, ECDC, NHC and DXY)
- Florida Traveler/Tourist Information (Closures, Procedures, Restrictions, etc.) from VISIT FLORIDA
- Florida Department of Health
- Florida Department of Health Interactive Map by County
Charlotte County (Punta Gorda/Englewood Beach):
If you have any questions/concerns inside the state of Florida, reach out to the Florida Department of Health:
IMPORTANT NOTE: This page is meant predominantly as a resource/collection of sites. This page is not meant to offer any travel or health guidance and visitors should always refer to public health organizations as the authority.
About the Charlotte Harbor Gulf Island Coast
Florida's premier year-round eco-tourism destination, Punta Gorda/Englewood Beach, The Charlotte Harbor Gulf Island Coast, is known for its pristine, unspoiled beauty. The area has hosted seven major feature films, been featured on SAIL magazine's list of the "10 Greatest Places to Sail in the United States," ranked by Golf Digest as the "Third Best Place to Live and Play Golf in America," and rated by MONEY magazine as one of the "Best Places to Live in the South." For information about area events, activities and attractions, contact the Punta Gorda/Englewood Beach Visitor and Convention Bureau, 1700 Tamiami Trail, Suite G-2, Port Charlotte, FL; call 941-743-1900 for a free Visitor's Guide; or visit the Web site at PureFlorida.com.