Two of Brazil’s best known tourist attractions – the Christ the Redeemer statue and Sugarloaf Mountain – have reopened after being shut for five months due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The reopening comes with limitations on the number of visitors permitted at the landmarks in Rio de Janeiro.
The Christ the Redeemer site welcomed visitors Saturday afternoon, according to the management company Paineiras Corcovado’s website. It will then open with reduced hours Sunday, with tourist vans traversing the hill at half the capacity, and the tourist train operating at 25% capacity.
Similar precautions, including temperature checks, are being taken at other tourist attractions that are opening this weekend, including Sugarloaf, the Rio Star ferris wheel and the AquaRio aquarium, according to the government tourism campaign website, Rediscover Rio.
The campaign, which launched on Wednesday, encourages Rio de Janeiro state residents to head to tourist hotspots by offering them half price tickets.
Last week, Brazil became only the second country behind the US to exceed 100,000 deaths from Covid-19, while the total number of infections recorded in the country topped 3 million.
People marked the grim milestone by posting on social media under the hashtag #100thousanddeaths in solidarity with the families of coronavirus victims.
The NGO Rio of Peace displayed hundred crosses in the sand along with a poster asking: “Why are we the second in number of deaths?”
Fernanda Wenzel wrote in Porto Alegre, Brazil. Rory Sullivan wrote in London. Rodrigo Pedroso and Thaize Oliveira contributed to this report.