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Vietnam’s Da Lat as packed as ever on first weekend post-social distancing

Vietnam’s Da Lat as packed as ever on first weekend post-social distancing

Monday, April 27, 2020, 16:36 GMT+7
Vietnam’s Da Lat as packed as ever on first weekend post-social distancing
Traffic is jammed at a roundabout in Da Lat City, Lam Dong Province, Vietnam, April 26, 2020. Photo: Mai Vinh / Tuoi Tre

Visitors thronged attractions in Da Lat City, a tourist hotspot in the Central Highlands province of Lam Dong, on Saturday and Sunday, the first weekend after social distancing measures started being relaxed in Vietnam last week.

Lam Dong is categorized as a 'low-risk' province by the National Steering Committee for novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) Prevention and Control, with no infection reported to date.

Social distancing rules in place since April 1 have been relaxed in most of Vietnam except in parts of Hanoi and the northern provinces of Ha Giang and Bac Ninh since April 23, with inter-province commercial passenger transport allowed to resume if safety conditions are met.

On Saturday and Sunday, night markets and tourist attractions in Lam Dong, particularly in Da Lat, were once again flooded with tourists enjoying their first weekend trip after the social distancing period.

Cafés and eateries have received permission to resume operations as long as they meet COVID-19 prevention requirements.

Hotels and lodging facilities have also reopened to welcome the influx of visitors.

It is estimated that there were about 15,000 daily arrivals to the city over the weekend, equal to a regular weekend figure prior to the social distancing period.

Many streets in the city were as busy as they had been before the pandemic hit, while coffee shops and eateries were also crowded.

Most visitors traveled to Da Lat in personal vehicles, while only a few arrived on tourist coaches.

Many of them said they planned to stay in the city through the public holidays of Reunification Day (April 30) and International Labor Day (May 1).

The People’s Committee of Da Lat recommends that businesses and tourists keep a safe distance from one another and strictly implement preventive measures.

Vietnam practiced the first phase of nationwide social distancing from April 1 to 15.

The government required merely 28 of the provinces and cities to continue adhering to the strict measures for the following week, while easing restrictions in the others.

Some of the drastic measures were banning gatherings of more than two people in public spaces, closing schools, stores, entertainment venues, and limiting trips outdoors unless for absolutely necessary reasons such as for food, medicine, and emergency care.

Vietnam has reported 270 COVID-19 patients so far, with only 48 remaining in treatment.

No deaths related to the disease have been documented in the Southeast Asian country.

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