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LOOK: Deserted Cities Around The World In The Time Of COVID-19

Take a look at these eerie photos of cities all over the world, now empty because of nationwide lockdowns

To date, over four million people around the world have been infected by the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Over 285,000 people have died while a million patients have since recovered. But as we head into the sixth month of this global pandemic, it feels like nothing has changed and thousands of patients are still being added every day to the list of people testing positive for COVID-19.

At the moment, the world feels like it is on pause. Restaurants, parks, retail and commercial establishments have shut down, as people stay cooped up inside their homes, and streets have turned into eerie deserts—empty and without life. But there is beauty, serenity, and a feeling of peace in this time of pause.

We have collected photos of national landmarks, tourist destinations, and streets usually bursting with life and economic activity from all over the globe, that are now deserted and empty as governments continue to implement lockdowns to prevent the spread of the virus. Check the galleries below for a glimpse into the arresting beauty brought about by this stillness. 

New York City

The United States wasn’t one of the first countries where the virus spread early in the year, but their number of COVID-19 cases shot up pretty quickly by the end of March, now making them the country with the most number of positive cases and deaths, with New York at the center of the storm. Many attribute the failure of their president to prepare and respond to the pandemic even after the alarm bells went off. Last month, anti-lockdown rallies surged all over the US, which many health professionals and scientists believe could greatly increase their current trajectory of cases.

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Spain currently holds the second most number of COVID-19 cases at more than 225,000 infections and over 25,000 deaths. But last month, the Spanish government has announced its plans to ease their lockdown measures as their death toll drops under 400, which is their lowest since March 22. Bringing the country out of lockdown could be the government’s response to the alarming 3.9 million workers who have been temporarily laid off during the quarantine.


Despite the confidence of the British government and their citizens in their capability to handle the virus, UK’s cases have surged since the end of February, making them the third country with the most COVID-19 cases at over 223,000. Their prime minister, Boris Johnson, was one of the most prominent leaders in the world to have contracted the virus in March. He has since recovered and the British government now believes that UK has reached the peak of their curve and are starting conversations on how the country can ease out of lockdown.


Italy was one of the countries that responded early when COVID-19 broke out in Hubei, suspending all flights to and from China as early as January 31. However, by the beginning of March, the virus has already spread to all regions of Italy. They now remain the fifth country with the highest number of cases at almost 220,000 infections and over 30,000 deaths. Currently, Italy is under the longest COVID-19 lockdown in the world, but it has started easing out of the quarantine this week.


Another European country badly hit by the COVID-19 pandemic with almost 140,000 infections and over 26,000 deaths. A key event that was said to have spread the virus in the country was the Christian Open Door Church assembly in February, which was attended by about 2,500 people, at least half of whom are believed to have contracted the virus. French President Emmanuel Macron has put the country under lockdown on March 16, and after a number of extensions, will remain only until May 11. France is gearing up to resume economic activities, reopen schools, and even allow travel within France once the lockdown is lifted.

Here are more photos of cities and countries around the world whose streets have been left empty due to their respective lockdown and quarantine measures.

Photos from Reuters, WEForum, Yahoo News, and The Atlantic.

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