Egypt's Giza Zoo is set to open its doors to the public on Monday following over five months of closure due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The shutdown of the zoo was among wide-ranging, drastic measures introduced by the government in March, which included the halt of several indoor and outdoor activities in a bid to curtail the spread of the contagion.
All public gardens, beaches, amusement parks, and other places that accommodate large gatherings have been out of service on the back of the March decision.
On Wednesday, the Egyptian government announced the reopening of gated parks that require entrance fees like zoos, amusement parks, and other open spaces at a reduced occupancy rate of 50 percent, while delaying the reopening of beaches, public gardens, and enclosed places, including those that host wedding and funeral services.
The country has been witnessing a significant decline in the daily infection tally and deaths from the deadly virus. Only 89 coronavirus cases were reported nationwide on Saturday, the lowest daily tally registered since April.
The Giza Zoo, one of the Egyptian capital’s most popular family attractions, has suffered heavy financial losses due to the pandemic.
"We lost millions of pounds," Maha Saber, director of the Giza Zoo, told Ahram Online, without specifying exactly how much the zoo has lost over the past five months.
"We have lost up to half of our annual income, which comes from entrance tickets and some building rentals inside the park," she noted.
The facility is hoping to make a successful comeback starting tomorrow, and will adhere to all preventative measures recommended by health organisations.
Over the past days, the park has carried out sanitisation and disinfection measures in all areas frequented by guests, Saber added.
Visitors and workers will not be allowed to enter the zoo without wearing facemasks and having their temperatures measured at the zoo's entrance, and they will be required to maintain safe distances of at least one metre apart from one another, she stressed.
The number of visitors at the 85-feddan zoo will be restricted to only 3,000 people at a time, which is almost half of what the zoo would usually accommodate, according to the zoo director.
The safety rules are in accordance with instructions issued by the Egyptian cabinet, Saber said.