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In pictures: Japan's Golden Week paused by pandemic

Extended holiday kicks off to deserted temples and empty stations

Kiyomizu temple in Kyoto. (Photo by Maho Obata)

OSAKA -- The ubiquitous crowds and traffic of Japan's Golden Week holidays have all but disappeared this year. With the government declaring a nationwide state of emergency to combat the coronavirus outbreak, sightseeing destinations, train stations and highways are largely empty as residents stay close to home.

Golden Week kicked off Wednesday and runs through May 6. The extended break, which includes a string of public holidays, usually provides workers, students and families the chance to travel or return to their hometowns to see family and friends.

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