|Beijing's historic alleyways were packed with camera-wielding visitors Tuesday, while a bride dressed in red tulle took wedding photos with her groom outside the Forbidden City. (Photo by= Noel Celis/Barron's)|
[Asia News Communication = Reporter Reakkana] Millions of Chinese travelers flocked to domestic tourist attractions over the Labour Day long holiday with COVID-19 fears already a distant memory. Beijing's historic alleyways were packed with camera-wielding visitors on Tuesday (May 4), AFP reported.
Out-of-towners also mobbed popular sites in Shanghai over the weekend. In Wuhan, where COVID-19 was first reported in late 2019, thousands of maskless revelers cheered and danced shoulder-to-shoulder at the outdoor Strawberry Music Festival. China has largely brought the virus under control with strict lockdowns and border controls since mid-2020, with only 17 cases among quarantined travelers reported in the country on Tuesday.
The Chinese economy recorded an explosive 18.3 percent increase in GDP in the first quarter, and life in China has largely returned to normal aside from occasional small outbreaks, while a devastating new wave of infections overwhelms neighboring India. Limits on flights abroad, and quarantine requirements for anyone entering the country, mean that foreign holidays are almost entirely out of the question. However, Chinese authorities remain wary of a virus resurgence, urging tourist attractions to limit visitor numbers and requiring travelers to register in advance before entering popular sites. Travel booking platform Ctrip expects around 200 million people to make trips across China during the five-day period, with hotel bookings about 40 percent from before the pandemic.