The Jakarta Post
A man sits on his pedicab as he waits for passengers in the now-deserted tourist area of Jl. Malioboro on April 5. (JP/Arnold Simanjuntak)
Amid the still alarming pandemic, some tourist attractions in Yogyakarta have opened, but not yet to visitors from outside the region.
As reported by kompas.com, the Yogyakarta city administration has opened some of its tourist sites, such as Yogyakarta Palace, Malioboro, Taman Pintar (Smart Park), Taman Sari and Sonobudoyo Museum, but only to local residents.
Selected groups of family members, communities or agencies are also welcome, but tourists from outside the region are encouraged to plan their visit for August instead, according to Yogyakarta Deputy Mayor Heroe Poerwadi on Wednesday.
"Please be patient, as we're currently still implementing a limited trial phase [at several tourist sites] to avoid coronavirus contagion," said Heroe. "There'll be a time when Yogyakarta will open to all [visitors]."
Read also: Borobudur temple’s Zone 1 reopens to public
Heroe added that tourists coming from so-called red or black zones, or areas with a high risk of COVID-19, would be required to show negative rapid test results prior to entering the city. Meanwhile, foreign visitors will have to present PCR test results.
“I there's a tourist who gets sick during travel, they will also be prohibited from stepping out of their vehicle,” said Heroe, adding that officials would be ready to check visitors' health certificates at designated parking spots.
All visitors will also be required to wear face masks, wash their hands frequently, maintain a safe distance from others and comply with other aspects of COVID-19 protocols.
“If a mask is not worn in a public place, there will be a fine of Rp 100,000 or community service. The goal is for everyone to be cautious to avoid new spread of the virus,” said Heroe.
As of Wednesday, Yogyakarta has recorded 42 cases of COVID-19. Three of the patients are undergoing treatment, 37 have recovered and two have died.
Separately, Malioboro's Abu Bakar Ali parking area manager Doni Rulianto said that groups of tourists had started to arrive in Yogyakarta on weekends.
“A big portion came from Central and East Java. Last weekend, 14 tour buses arrived,” said Ali.
Ali said the area’s management was ready to implement the administration's order to request health certificates from incoming tourists.
“Previously, we just checked that incoming tourists wear masks and ask that they wash their hands in the places provided,” said Ali. (car/kes)
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