New Zealand pauses travel bubble with Australia after COVID-19 lockdowns
According to Channel News Asia, New Zealand on Friday paused its newly opened travel bubble with Australia, the government in Wellington said, after a COVID-19 outbreak in its larger neighbour.
“As set out in our Trans-Tasman bubble protocols, travel between New Zealand and Western Australia has been paused, pending further advice from the state government,” a statement on the New Zealand government website said.
The decision came after Western Australia announced that the regions of Perth and Peel were entering a three-day lockdown, starting midnight Friday to Saturday, due to a traveller testing positive for the coronavirus. The decision to lock down followed “a positive COVID-19 case from hotel quarantine who was active in the community”, a statement on the Western Australia government website said.
Local media reported that a man in his 50s flew into Melbourne from Perth on Wednesday and tested positive for the coronavirus earlier Friday. For the rest of the news, please continue reading here on channel news Asia.
Iran to bar travellers coming from India due to COVID-19 variant
According to Reuters, Iran said on Saturday that it would bar travellers from India over a COVID-19 variant to avert its spread in the already stricken country. Officials, however, did not say if any cases of the variant first identified in India in late March had been detected in Iran, the epicentre of the pandemic in the Middle East.
“The Indian coronavirus is a new threat we face,” President Hassan Rouhani said in remarks broadcast on state TV.
“The Indian virus is more dangerous than the English and Brazilian variants,” he added.
“All the eastern provinces should make sure people infected with the virus do not cross the borders into the country,” Rouhani said. Iran’s eastern provinces border with Pakistan and Afghanistan. Visitors can also travel Iran by way of the Gulf. Iran’s civil aviation organisation announced on local media that all flights to and from India and Pakistan would be halted from midnight Sunday. For the rest of the news, please click here and continue reading on Reuters.
Which National Parks Will Require Reservations This Summer?
Laurie Baratti from Travel Pulse did collect the latest information about US national parks regarding opening and reservations.
Given the huge demand, and to avoid combat overcrowding, some of the nation’s most-visited parks have implemented new ticketed-entry systems for day visitors, which also require them to have booked reservations in advance. A handful of national parks have already announced enhanced entry requirements for the 2021 summer season, Lonely Planet reported. Due to the parks’ increased popularity, day-use permits are expected to sell out quickly, so you may want to download Recreation.gov’s new app for ease of booking.
Acadia National Park
With 3.5 million visitors a year, Acadia National Park, located in coastal Maine, is among the top ten most-visited national parks in the country. One of Acadia’s biggest draws, Cadillac Mountain—which, at 1,530 feet, is the highest point along the North Atlantic seaboard and vaunts itself as the first spot in the U.S. to see the morning sunrise—will require vehicle reservations to be made in advance, online, between May 26 and October 19.
—Two ticketing options are offered. The two-hour “sunrise” reservation, with the admission timeframe ranging between 3:30 a.m. and 5:30 a.m., depending upon how daybreak times alter.
Glacier National Park
For the rest of the article and details about further national parks, please click here and continue reading on Travel Pulse.
Finally, New York City is ready to welcome visitors
According to Alicia Johnson from Lonely Planet, New York City & Company, the city’s official destination and marketing organization and convention and visitors bureau, recently announced its multi-layer approach to reopening after COVID-19 shuttered bars and restaurants and dimmed the lights on Broadway.
A major push towards reopening the city came in the form of a $30 million marketing campaign investment, announced by New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio via an online press conference.
“Tourism accounts for hundreds of thousands of jobs in this city, and building a recovery for all of us means welcoming tourists back to the greatest travel destination in the world,” said de Blasio via a press release. “The ‘NYC Reawakens’ initiative will show travelers everywhere that New York City is not only ready to host them – it’s creating a fairer, better, and more vibrant city than ever before.”
The back-to-business model for reopening the city is getting tossed aside as new plans and initiatives with issues like sustainability, diversity and spreading the wealth throughout all five boroughs jump to the forefront. For the rest of the article, please click here and continue reading on Lonely Planet.
Flight over Kyiv and Chernobyl – 35th anniversary of the disaster
According to Andrea Smith from Lonely Planet, Ukraine International Airlines (UIA) is organising the event, which it has called “Flight over Kyiv and Chernobyl.” It will take place on 25 April, the eve of the anniversary of the world’s worst nuclear accident. Passengers will be able to see Kyiv and Chernobyl from unusual angles because the Embraer 195 will fly at the minimum allowable height of 900 meters. It will also fly above the Dnipro river.
While on board, the Chernobyl Tour Company, which specializes in Chernobyl Exclusion Zone tourism, will assist passengers in deepening their knowledge of the causes and consequences of the accident. The disaster occurred when Chernobyl’s Reactor No, 4 exploded in 1986, killing at least 31 people in the immediate aftermath. It sent a plume of deadly radioactive dust into the atmosphere, threatening the health and wellbeing of hundreds of thousands of people. Pripyat is part of the Exclusion Zone, which has seen an influx of visitors since the release of the HBO hit TV series, Chernobyl, in 2019.
Radiation levels are still higher than normal in the area and authorities say that it could take as long as tens of thousands years for people to be able to live in the region safely. Tour operators say it’s safe for short-term visits, and of course, flying over it is safe too. Passengers on the anniversary flight will get to take a photo in the cockpit with the pilot, and will be permitted to ask questions and learn interesting facts. Back on dry land, they will also have the oppportunity to visit a Boeing 777 on the apron of Boryspil Airport.
The cost of the “Flight over Kyiv and Chernobyl” experience is…for the rest of the article, please click here and continue reading on Lonely Planet.