Virus Outbreak China

After two months of confinement, Chinese enjoy the arrival of spring

Locals in Beijing — largely confined to their homes in recent months — ventured outside on Thursday to take in the famous cherry blossom as tourist sites reopened amid a sharp fall in the number of new coronavirus cases.

Yuyuantan Park, about eight kilometres west of Tiananmen Square, is one of Beijing's most popular cherry blossom spots.

But despite certain restrictions being lifted, the park is still limiting entry - until 15 April visitors to the park must book tickets online at least one day in advance, and the park will suspend visitor entry when the number of visitors gets close of 30% of its usual capacity.

In addition, security guards patrolled the park, holding loudspeakers that kept reminding people to wear masks and not to gather.

For most people, the new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia and death.

The vast majority of people recover from the new virus.

The new coronavirus has caused a global pandemic that has sickened at least 470,000 and killed 21,000 worldwide, crippled economies and forced restrictions on the movement of millions of people in an effort to stop the virus from spreading further and overwhelming health care systems.