The Colosseum in Rome can be visited again after being closed for about three months during the coronavirus pandemic. "This is a symbolic moment for Rome and for Italy," the director of the Archaeological Park at the Colosseum, Alfonsina Russo, said on Monday.
The amphitheater is one of Italy's most popular tourist attractions. The reopening of the ancient building and the surrounding ruins of the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill show that Italy is recovering, Russo said.
Despite the reopening, the pandemic has meant major changes for the Colosseum: In the past, around 20,000 people flocked there every day, but access has now been restricted to between 1,000 and 1,600 visitors per day.
First of all, Romans and people from the wider region are expected, Russo said. "But I hope that international tourists will come back," he added, saying that the proportion of foreign guests was around 70% in the past.
Access is only possible with booked tickets and under health regulations, such as body temperature measurement at the entrance and the wearing of face masks.
The Colosseum was closed in early March due to the spread of COVID-19, the potentially fatal respiratory disease caused by the coronavirus.
Italy was severely affected by the disease, with around 33,500 COVID-19 deaths, according to official figures, but the number of infections has been falling for weeks.
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