A state of emergency was declared in Spain last month following the coronavirus outbreak - with a nationwide lockdown enforced by the Spanish government just two days later.

The lockdown was initially ordered for a two-week period, but was later extended until April 11.

However, the country is now beginning to lift some of the restrictions that were put in place, announcing the lockdown measures would remain in place until May 3, with some exceptions.

What restrictions have been lifted?

Some non-essential industry workers have now been allowed to return to their jobs, including those who work in manufacturing, construction and some services. However, they must still adhere to strict safety guidelines.

The rest of the population are still being asked to work from home, with schools, bars, restaurants and other services still closed to the public.

Shops still remain closed, except for supermarkets, fruit stands, bakeries, butchers, pharmacies and newsstands.

The rules are expected to remain in force into May.

Why have some restrictions been lifted?

The move to ease the lockdown restrictions comes after the country reported its lowest daily growth in confirmed coronavirus infections in three weeks.

The number of deaths from coronavirus fell from 619 on Sunday (April 12) to 517 on Monday (April 13).

However, those who have been permitted to go back to work must still maintain social distancing.

The Oldham Times: HOLIDAY. An outdoor swimming pool. Picture: PixabayHOLIDAY. An outdoor swimming pool. Picture: Pixabay

Will travel to Spain be allowed this summer?

The lockdown rules in Spain are expected to last into May at the earliest, meaning tourists still have a long wait until travel to the country is allowed.

Beaches across Spain currently remain off-limits to everyone, including swimming in the sea, under the Spanish government’s state of emergency rules.

The UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) is currently advising British nationals against all but essential international travel.

From Monday, March 23, only Spanish citizens, or those who can prove they are a resident in Spain, will be allowed to enter the country through airports, ports or land borders.

This measure was brought in for an initial period of 30 days, although it could be extended.

To enter Spain, you may be required to show proof you are resident, such as a residency certificate or other form of ID with your Spanish home address on it.

British travellers will continue to be allowed to leave Spain. British travellers who are not resident in Spain, should not attempt to travel to Spain.

The following categories of people are also exempt from border restrictions:

  • Frontier workers
  • Health workers
  • Those who are transiting Spain to their country of residence in EU/Schengen area
  • Those with a Schengen visa who are transiting Spain to their country of residence in EU/Schengen area
  • Those who can prove that they need to enter Spain for essential reasons

The Oldham Times: TOURISM: The Spanish city of Barcelona. Picture: PixabayTOURISM: The Spanish city of Barcelona. Picture: Pixabay

What restrictions could be enforced if lockdown is lifted?

Once the physical barriers on the beach promenades are removed, tourists will still have to keep a safe distance from each other even after the lockdown is lifted, both on the beaches and within resorts and hotels, the Minister of Tourism has said.

Minister Reyes Maroto said tourists who return to Spain “will have to sunbathe 6ft apart”, and admitted the tourism sector will have a slower recovery from the pandemic.

While safe distances will have to continue, even on the beaches, Maroto said it is too early to say whether tourists will have to be screened when entering the country, and have their temperature taken at airports.

She also said it is not known at this stage how social distancing measures on the beaches would be enforced.

There are fears many popular tourist spots will be severely affected until at least 2021, although the impact is difficult to calculate, as it is unclear how long the health crisis will last.