The Chinese megalopolis where masks are rare and clubs crowded

President Xi Jinping’s “COVID Zero” strategy has become internationally famous for its grueling lockdowns. But in the southwestern megacity of Chongqing, signs of China’s iconic pandemic policy disrupting daily life are hard to find.

Tourists took selfies in an ancient fortress as hundreds of revelers packed into a gay bar this week, with barely a mask in sight. Users of the ride-sharing app jumped into Didi Global cars to escape the city’s 40-degree Celsius (104 Fahrenheit) heat wave without scanning contact-tracing apps, unlike in Beijing. Domestic travelers have flocked to the city, which generally does not require quarantine upon arrival.

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