11 Major Travel Destinations That Are Reopening — and How

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traveler in a mask
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After shutting down for weeks or months due to the coronavirus pandemic, major tourist destinations around the world are slowly reopening.

But as hygiene and safety are top of mind, you’ll notice some changes for sure. Many businesses are limiting services and implementing strict social distancing measures to slow the spread of COVID-19.

If you’re planning a trip, it’s a good idea to double-check restrictions before heading out. You may need to follow special guidelines or self-quarantine for a time if you’re traveling between states or heading to another country.

And while you can visit some of these destinations right now, others have only announced plans to reopen in the coming weeks or months.

From Disney parks to the Vatican, here’s a look at some international travel destinations that are reopening — and how they plan to keep you safe.

1. Metropolitan Museum of Art

A tourist looks at a painting in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City
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The Metropolitan Museum of Art, a New York City landmark, is planning to reopen to the public in mid-August. But you won’t see any talks, tours, concerts or events on its schedule through the end of the year. The museum also may limit hours once reopened and has yet to specify how it will enforce social distancing around exhibits.

For ways to save money on your next trip to a museum, check out “6 Ways to Visit Top Museums Across America for Free.”

2. Vatican

Vatican City
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The seat of the Catholic Church in Vatican City, an independent city-state within the city of Rome, was busy emerging from the coronavirus lockdown throughout the month of May. Vatican museums gradually reopened, and St. Peter’s Basilica opened its doors after undergoing a full scrub-down.

As part of its efforts to limit the spread of COVID-19, the Vatican is conducting temperature checks at papal basilicas and museums, where visitors are also required to wear face masks.

3. Walt Disney World

The entrance to Walt Disney World in Florida
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While the outdoor shopping, dining and entertainment complex of Disney Springs near Orlando, Florida, is open to visitors now, the rest of the Walt Disney World campus is planning a phased reopening starting July 11.

Expect a healthy dose of safety precautions, starting with temperature screenings for all guests and cast members (with a no-touch thermometer). And everyone 3 years of age and older must wear a face covering.

If you are hoping to head to Mickey Mouse’s house soon, you might want to also check out “How to Make the Most of Your Disney World Tickets.”

4. Louvre Museum

The Louvre
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The iconic Parisian museum plans to fully reopen July 6, though you can visit the Carrousel Garden and Tuileries Garden now.

Visitors must book time slots in advance, starting June 15, and wearing a mask will be mandatory.

5. Las Vegas

Las Vegas, Nevada
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In the entertainment capital of the world, the Las Vegas Strip is back — with safety in mind. Casinos are doling out hand sanitizer and face masks, operating at a limited capacity and disinfecting shared playing pieces such as dice and cards. Some casino resorts will even have hand-washing stations with water, towels and soap. Nightclubs, shows and some spas will remain closed for now.

6. Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone National Park
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Whether you’re looking for a family-friendly day trip or a good solo hike, Yellowstone is one of the national parks slowly lifting its lockdown measures.

Entrances in Wyoming, Idaho and Montana are all open, with some caveats. Visitors can only visit during the day, and the National Park Service is asking the public to adopt social distancing practices while enjoying parks. Campgrounds, visitor centers and other facilities remain closed.

Check the Yellowstone National Park website for details before you go.

7. Kunsthistorisches Museum

Tourist at an art museum
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The Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna, Austria, reopened May 30. The number of people allowed in will be limited, with visitors asked to keep 1 meter (more than 3 feet) apart from each other. Both staff and visitors will be required to wear face masks.

8. Shanghai Disneyland

The Disney store in Shanghai Disney Resort in Shanghai, China
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After a three-month closure, Shanghai Disneyland started welcoming visitors again in May. But bringing the magical world of Disney into the new normal in China means introducing some new hygiene and safety measures.

The park is limiting visitors to less than a third of its prior capacity, scanning temperatures and requiring both guests and employees to wear face masks.

9. Grand Canyon National Park

Grand Canyon National Park
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The nation’s second-most visited national park reopened in mid-May and is slowly extending hours. The South Rim’s South Entrance is now open 24 hours, and the Mather Campground is open to existing reservations. The North Rim is open only for day use. Lodging and activities such as trail rides at both locations started reopening in June.

10. Florida Keys

John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park in Florida
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Looking for an ocean getaway? The Florida Keys reopened June 1 — but those heading down the “Highway That Goes to Sea” will have to follow a few health guidelines. Officials are asking visitors to bring face coverings and hand sanitizer along with the typical beach essentials.

And at both airports in the Keys — Key West International Airport and Florida Keys Marathon International Airport — passengers arriving via nonstop flights from COVID-19 hot spots will get a health screening and may be asked to quarantine.

11. Saint Louis Zoo

Tigers at the Saint Louis Zoo
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One of the few free zoos in the nation, the Saint Louis Zoo plans to reopen June 13 with enhanced sanitation protocols and modified service and limited capacity for shops, restaurants and attractions, some of which will be closed for health and safety reasons.

Guests will need to make a reservation to visit during a specific time slot, but they can stay as long as they want once they get there. Visitors age 9 and older must wear a face covering.

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