Tourist sites across China packed with travellers, indicate confidence in epidemic control measures

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Long-awaited crowds appeared at tourist sites in China, with many struggling to reach their destinations, and many stuck on highways for long hours on Saturday, the first day of the May Day holiday. The scene is an indication that the Chinese fully trust the country’s epidemic control measures.

An estimated 265 million passenger trips will be made during the holidays.

At 11 a.m., the Badaling Great Wall posted a notice that online reservations from Saturday to Monday exceeded 48,750, the limit set by epidemic control requirements. Video clips showed people pressing against the Great Wall.

Crowds on the Great Wall in Beijing on May 1, 2021 Photo: VCG

A similar scene occurred at popular Mount Tai in Tai’an, east China’s Shandong Province, where tourists thronged the famous mountain. “Even if you want to stop climbing, the people behind you won’t allow you to,” one netizen joked.

The Yellow Crane Tower, an iconic tourist site in Wuhan, central China’s Hubei Province, announced at 4 p.m. that it had received 40,000 visitors, or 80 percent of its maximum capacity. It may suspend entry due to epidemic control requirements.

“There are many people taking pictures of the tower and walking on the bridge [across the Yangtze River]it feels like we’re back in 2019,” a Wuhan resident posted on social media.

At the Longmen Grottoes in Luoyang, central China, security personnel used loudspeakers to tell tourists to keep walking in time with the crowds, not to stay too long in one place to take a picture, as this could cause a stampede or other accidents. .

Duanqiao in West Lake, Hang Zhou, Zhejiang (eastern China), also experienced unusual crowds with people queuing hundreds of meters outside the toilets. People who wanted to rent a boat on the scenic West Lake may have to wait hours for the opportunity.

Not only tourist sites but also motorway service centres, train stations and airports saw unusual numbers of travellers. A Luoyang resident surnamed Ma told the Global Times he spent four hours on a trip that normally takes 40 minutes. “The only relief is that road tolls have been removed during the holidays,” Ma said.

Of the 50 most searched phrases on China’s Sina Weibo Twitter, 10 were about holidays. People who traveled complained about the crowds, but also expressed excitement about the trip. Others shared their tips for avoiding crowds – staying home.

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