With the lifting of the ring of steel around Melbourne, Lakes Entrance, Metung and Lake Tyers Beach were almost at full capacity with many wanting to get away for the weekend.
Motels and caravan parks benefitted greatly and welcomed visitors gladly.
Monica Williams, from Koonwarra Holiday Park, had all cabins fully booked and only a few van sights available.
“As soon as (premier) Dan (Andrews) said the word, the phone started ringing,” she said.
“The cabins are fully booked for the next three weekends, Christmas is full and January is filling up quickly. “We are all very happy and looking forward to a very good summer,” she said.
North Arm Tourist Park mainly caters for older clients and weekly bookings.
“It was slow getting going but it is certainly busier now. We have moved things around to fit everyone in,” Steve Adams said.
Geoff Williams, from Heyfield Motel and Apartments, was fully booked for the weekend.
“Things really have been bad, but we got the chance to do a lot of maintenance,” he said.
“We slow down a bit now, but from December 19 through to the second week of January we are booked out.
“We are expecting things to only get busier,” he said.
“It is great to see tourists back and all is wonderful,” was the report from Tracey Howes at Coastal Waters Motel, who took over the motel in mid March, two weeks before COVID-19 hit.
“The weekend and this week are fully booked, I just hope eating houses can open up to more people soon, but there are still lots of things the tourists can enjoy,” she said
“We are looking forward to the routine and all of us getting back to normal.”
Restaurants and hotels were full to capacity with happy diners, while observing social distancing and density limit rules.
The Waterwheel Tavern has good seating outside and the weather was in their favour over the weekend.
“We were busy all weekend, it was really great,” Kevin Campbell said.
Sam Mahlook, from Miriams Restaurant, said they had a fantastic weekend.
“It was so busy we had to turn the phone off, we just couldn’t take any more people,” she said.
“All the diners were just so happy. They were relieved to be out, it was like they had got out of jail.”
Koonwarra Holiday Park in Lakes Entrance was at near full capacity as the ring of steel separating metropolitan Melbourne and regional Victoria due to the spread of COVID-19 was lifted last Sunday.