Life in Australia will move one step closer to normality from Wednesday as several strict coronavirus rules in New South Wales are scrapped.
Limits on the number of punters inside cafes and restaurants are being lifted altogether in the state, community sport will restart and cinemas can open their doors.
From July 1, outdoor sporting and cultural venues which have room for 40,000 guests are allowed to host up to 25 per cent of their normal capacity in NSW.
Two of the country’s largest cinema chains – Hoyts and Palace Cinemas – are also reopening their doors nationally on July 2.
Movie theatres will have to follow strict 1.5-metre distancing rules in their screenings, while staggered sessions will give staff time to disinfect facilities.
Restaurants and cafes in NSW are meanwhile welcoming more customers through their doors as the government scraps its 50-person limit on indoor venues and instead replaces it with the one person per four-square metre rule.
Year 6 players train in Fremantle, Perth on June 6 as social distancing restrictions eased in Western Australia (pictured). Community sport in NSW is restarting on Wednesday
Cafes in NSW are welcoming more customers through their doors as the government scraps its 50-person limit (pictured, customers dine in at a cafe in Bondi on June 6)
Community sport in the state – including representative and recreational leagues – can also restart, allowing thousands of local amateur to teams to get back in action.
Amid a surge of COVID-19 infections though in Victoria and the implementation of localised lockdowns, contact sport in the state is not allowed and only ten people can gather for outdoor recreation.
NSW’s limit on gatherings will remain unchanged at 20 guests for houses and the same number for outdoor get-togethers.
Outdoor gathering limits in Queensland, the ACT and Tasmania are set at 20, 100 and 500 people respectively.
However, music festivals and nightclubs will remain closed in most states as they have been deemed to be risky to reopen during this time.
Nightclubs are already open in the Northern Territory, with Queensland clubs also allowed to reopen – but with strict social distancing in place.
People return to the movie theatre at Cinema Nova in Melbourne on June 22 (pictured). Hoyts and Palace Cinemas are reopening their doors nationally on July 2
Cinemas can reopen with social distancing measures in place to reduce the risk of the disease spreading within the community (pictured, a Geelong cinema on June 22)
Music festivals and nightclubs will remain closed (pictured, clubbers in the Gold Coast, where clubs can reopen but dancing is banned)
Queenslanders are also in for a treat with amusement parks, zoos and concert venues reopening from July 10.
Most zoos and museums have already reopened across Australia – including Sydney’s world famous Taronga Zoo.
Venues will be restricted to just 100 guests at one time but the government will consider a proposal to change to a one person per two square metres rule at Friday’s National Cabinet meeting.
Queensland will also reopen its borders on July 10, but Victorians will be forced to quarantine in hotels – paid for out of their own pocket.
Domestic tourists can still go between NSW, the ACT and Victoria without any restrictions on their movement.
Queensland will stop Victorians entering the state while letting all other Australians in from July 10 (pictured, the border near the Gold Coast)
The curve in Victoria has skyrocketed over the past couple of weeks as coronavirus infections continue to grow from within the suburbs of Melbourne
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk made the long-awaited announcement on Tuesday.
However, anyone entering the state will be asked to declare they have not been in Victoria in the past two weeks.
There will be fines of $4,000 for anyone who is caught lying on the online form.
Authorities in Victoria have been scrambling since the state saw a spike in cases over the past week.
Case numbers surged by 75 on Sunday, 71 on Monday and 64 on Tuesday – an extra 210 cases in just three days – in the biggest jump in cases since the state was lockdown in March.
Stay-at-home orders will be reintroduced for more than 310,000 residents in 36 suburbs across Victoria from midnight on Wednesday following a spike in coronavirus cases.
Most of the new spike in infections came from community-based transmissions rather than from overseas travellers.
Six local government areas in Melbourne have been identified as coronavirus hotspots, with authorities conducting mass testing on around 10,000 residents daily.
The areas include Hume and Brimbank, in Melbourne’s north and west, Casey and Cardinia in the city’s southeast and Moreland and Darebin in the north.
Victoria has been carrying out a testing blitz in ten suburbs across Melbourne (pictured, the ten ‘hotspot’ suburbs)
The Australian Defence Force (pictured in Melbourne on Saturday) have been drafted in to help with the mammoth COVID-19 testing effort
Despite the rise in COVID-19 cases, Victoria will also ease some restrictions from July 12.
Indoor and outdoor venue limits, including restaurants, cafes and pubs, will be eased to allow up to 50 people.
Limits at auction houses, community halls, libraries, museums and places of worship will also be relaxed to allow 50 people.
The tourism industry in South Australia and Tasmania will be in for a boost at borders reopen.
South Australia will open its borders to NSW, Victoria and the ACT from July 20.
Border restrictions will also be lifted in Tasmania on July 24.
Nationwide, there has been 7,767 confirmed cases of coronavirus, including 104 deaths. Of the total, 7,008 have recovered.
A woman in a face mask is seen walking past St Paul’s Cathedral in Melbourne on June 21 (pictured) as coronavirus cases rise across the city
Members of the Australian Defence Force are seen putting on PPE as they were drafted in to help perform thousands of COVID-19 tests in Melbourne on Saturday (pictured)