Families reunited and tourism begins to reopen as Wales lifts Covid travel ban

  • Video report by ITV reporter Ellie Pitt

People in Wales are allowed to stay in self-contained holiday accommodation from Saturday in an easing of coronavirus restrictions.

The country's "stay local" requirement has also been lifted, meaning there are no travel restrictions within Wales for the first time since it entered lockdown on December 20.

But the easing of tourism and travel rules are not meant to be taken advantage of by people living elsewhere in the UK - with England, Scotland and Northern Ireland still under lockdowns.

And an interim "all-Wales travel area" in place until April 12 means people will be unable to travel in or out of the country for at least another two weeks, unless for a reasonable excuse such as for work.

Other changes to Wales' coronavirus rules from Saturday include allowing up to six people from two different households to meet and exercise outdoors, as well as organised outdoor activities and sports for under-18s.

First Minister Mark Drakeford said: "These further relaxations are part of our careful and phased approach to unlocking the restrictions and enabling people and businesses to resume their activities in the safest possible way.

"We're only able to do this because of the sacrifices everyone across Wales has made over the last few months - everything you are doing to keep your loved ones safe is also keeping Wales safe.

"The public health position remains stable; our incredible vaccination programme goes from strength to strength - we have headroom to make these changes."

Only essential travel in and out of Wales is allowed for at least the next two weeks. Credit: PA

Self-contained holiday accommodation includes hotels with en-suite facilities and room service, as well as caravans and holiday homes where facilities are not shared. Guests staying at self-contained accommodation must be from the same household or support bubble.

The Welsh Government said the latest easing of restrictions meant Wales was moving out of alert level four - which has the strictest set of measures - and was now moving into level three.

From Saturday there is also a limited reopening of outdoor areas of some historic places and gardens, while libraries and archives will be able to reopen.

Wales has already reopened hairdressers and allowed most school pupils to resume face-to-face teaching, with all pupils and college students expected to return to classrooms after the Easter break.

Supermarkets have been allowed to resume selling non-essential items and garden centres have also reopened, with the rest of non-essential retail and close contact services expected to reopen from April 12.