Will Abkhazia welcome tourists in just a week?
In Abkhazia, the state of emergency declared due to the coronavirus pandemic will end on June 1, and virtually all restrictions will be lifted, including the closure of hotels and other businesses in the tourism industry.
It is already possible to book a room at a hotel or spa resort in Abkhazia on the sites of popular Russian tourism companies—and it is free, as there’s no guarantee that the tourist season really will open on June 1.
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The borders in Abkhazia are still completely closed. Although the quarantine measures have been eased, some restrictions are still in place, including the closure of hotels and tour companies.
Even if the Abkhazian authorities do not extend the quarantine after it expires, there is no guarantee that tourist season will be open. Most tourists come to Abkhazia from Russia, where the epidemiological situation is still difficult and all the borders are closed.
As of May 25, Abkhazia has reported 25 cases of COVID-19. In April, three people in Gagra were diagnosed. Two of them have recovered, and the other, a 95-year-old woman, has died.
The rest of the patients were diagnosed in May of 2020. Most of them are cadets who traveled home from a military academy in Russia.
Official information states that every day, 70 to 100 people are tested for COVID-19 in Abkhazia.
Russia is currently third in the world in terms of coronavirus cases. As of May 25, 353,427 cases have been reported, and 3,633 people have died.
The Hotelier Guild of Abkhazia believe that at best, the tourist season will begin in the republic at the end of June 2020.
People on social media were very critical about the decision to allow people to start booking hotel reservations from June 1.
“Just a couple hundred cadets came home from military academies in Russia, and 20 of them had coronavirus. What will happen if we welcome a flood of tourists?”
“In Russia, the pandemic is spreading like wildfire. Our hoteliers, apparently, cannot wait for them to come over and burn us down, too.”