The coronavirus brought the world to a grinding halt, but there were signs of life around the globe Tuesday as some areas loosen lockdown restrictions — allowing for certain businesses, attractions and outdoor spaces to reopen.
Germany, which has lost more than 6,000 people to the contagion, took its first steps to ease restrictions last week — and by Tuesday locals were pictured visiting the Berlin Zoo and snapping selfies in front of elephants as the zoo partially reopened.
Smaller businesses were also permitted to reopen in the country, but strict social distancing measures remain in place, and there are still bans on large gatherings of people.
In Australia, where COVID-19 has claimed the lives of nearly 7,000, swimmers and sun-bathers returned to Sydney’s iconic Bondi Beach after it reopened Tuesday, following a five-week closure amid the global coronavirus pandemic.
Joyful locals were spotted in the sand as eager surfers took to the waves.
Surfers wait for officials to open Bondi Beach in Sydney.AP
“We’ve got our beach back,” read a message on one thrilled swimmers’ bareback.
Italy — the European country hardest-hit by COVID-19, suffering a loss of more than 27,000 people to the virus – has also begun its gradual reopening process.
Some restrictions are expected to be lifted on May 4, with the reopening of parks, which have been shuttered for weeks.
Retail shops and museums will be allowed to reopen by May 18, while bars, restaurants, salons and barbershops can start to reopen in June.
France, which has seen more than 23,000 deaths as a result of the virus, outlined a plan Tuesday to reopen some shops, including farmers markets and small museums, as well as schools and nurseries starting May 11.
Restaurants, parks, major museums and other businesses will remain closed until at least June 2.
A family poses for a selfie in front of elephants at Zoo Berlin as it partially reopens to the public amid the novel coronavirus pandemic.AFP via Getty Images
Locals in France will be allowed to travel starting May 11, but only up to 60 miles away.
France is expected to conduct at least 700,000 virus tests a week and anyone taking public transportation, taxis or shared car services will be required to wear a mask.
Spain, which has been under strict lockdown orders for more than seven weeks, unveiled Tuesday what Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez called “a transition plan to a new normal.”
More than 23,000 people have died in the country due to coronavirus and more than 232,000 people were infected by the bug there.
The virus has infected more than 3 million people worldwide, including more than 1 million in the US alone, according to the latest data from the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center.
With Post wires