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25 Mar 2020

Japanese attractions start to reopen following two-month closure
BY Tom Anstey

Legoland Japan has reopened its outdoor attractions under strict rules to prevent further spread of COVID-19

Legoland Japan has reopened its outdoor attractions under strict rules to prevent further spread of COVID-19
photo: shutterstock.com

Some attractions operators in Japan have started to reopen their doors to the public with the coronavirus largely contained in the country.

Legoland Japan is among those to have reopened under certain restrictions, with indoor attractions closed and events with large gatherings cancelled and business hours shortened. Rides such as the park's rollercoasters are now open again.

Legoland's operator, Merlin Entertainments, has also reopened Sea Life Nagoya to the public, with the operator measuring visitors' body temperatures at the aquarium's entrance and asking all of its staff to wear masks.

The Dutch-themed resort Huis Ten Bosch reopened on March 16, though all of its indoor facilities remain shut until at least 29 March. In addition, the opening of the new area "Fantasia City of Light" has been delayed until at least April. Visitors to the park and its staff are being asked to wear masks. Infrared technology has also been installed at the park entrance to conduct temperature checks.

The primarily outdoor Moominvalley theme park in Saitama resumed operations on March 14, with guests having their temperatures checked and denied entry if they have a fever.

Tokyo Disneyland has chosen to exercise caution, with the resort remaining closed through early April. Disney's planned 15 April opening of it major expansion – set to feature the Enchanted Tale of Beauty and the Beast, The Happy Ride with Baymax, Minnie’s Style Studio, and the Fantasyland Forest Theater – has been "postponed to mid-May 2020 or beyond".

Universal Studios Japan also remains closed until at least 29 March. "The definite re-opening date will be announced later by considering the situation including the government’s further announcements," said a statement from the park.

Other attractions confirmed to be open include the GrinPa Amusement Park near mount Fuji, Bandai Namco's arcades and cinema operator Aeon Entertainment. All are under strict rules to prevent further spread of the virus.

Japan has been dealing with COVID-19 for nearly two months but has managed to keep the disease largely under control. The country has had 10 outbreak clusters, with nearly 1,200 confirmed cases and 43 deaths. The outbreak, however, has led to the postponement of the Olympic Games in Tokyo, which have been pushed to 2021.




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