NSW residents will be able to head to the state’s regions for holidays in less than a fortnight under a relaxation of COVID-19 travel restrictions.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian on Wednesday announced recreational regional travel within the state will be allowed again from June 1.
Under current NSW public health orders, regional travel for holidays is banned.
The Premier said social distancing will still be required and urged residents to plan ahead.
“It will be different to a holiday you have taken before,” she told reporters in Sydney on Wednesday.
“Nothing we do is the same during a pandemic.”
Ms Berejiklian added that NSW will be open for people from other states, saying that’s “best for NSW and Australia”.
Queensland has flagged border closures with southern states could remain until at least September due to the coronavirus pandemic, prompting despair from tourism groups.
It comes as NSW on Wednesday recorded four new COVID-19 cases from more than 7000 tests, with three people in intensive care. The new cases involve returned travellers who were placed in quarantine in hotels.
Ms Berejiklian also announced libraries, art galleries, and museums will re-open on June 1.
She said there will be set times for the state’s most vulnerable to visit, and people will be required to leave a record of their visit so authorities can follow up if there is an infection linked to the facility.
The premier also flagged the number of people allowed in restaurants and cafes could also be doubled to 20 within the next month.
“That’s definitely on the cards,” she told the Nine Network.
NSW Health on Wednesday confirmed the state recorded its 49th COVID-19 death, a 93-year-old female resident at Sydney’s Newmarch House nursing home.
Operators Anglicare reported the death on Tuesday. The elderly woman’s death is the 17th at the Anglicare-run facility and takes the national death toll to 100.
Meanwhile, NSW public school students will return to classrooms full time on Monday, two months after restrictions forced about 800,000 children to study remotely.
Some independent and Catholic schools will also return full-time on Monday, while others are working towards a June 1 return date.
Assemblies and excursions will remain off the table, non-essential school visitors will be banned and parents have been warned not to linger at the school gate.