Regional Victoria is coming out of lockdown at midnight.
The unexpected announcement was made by Premier Daniel Andrews and chief health officer Brett Sutton on Monday morning.
The shock call was made on the basis there were no COVID-19 or exposure sites in regional Victoria and a level of confidence the outbreaks in Melbourne were in check with successive days of 11 new cases after a spike of 29 reported on Saturday.
Thousands of primary close contacts have been cleared from the regions over the last few weeks.
"We've always said the moment it's safe to lift restrictions we will. While we continue to get on top of this outbreak in Melbourne, minimal primary close contacts and no new cases means we can ease setting in regional Victoria," Mr Andrews said.
"This outbreak is an important reminder that until more Australians are vaccinated, we cannot afford complacency to creep in.
"We must stay safe to stay open."
Private gatherings in the home are still not permitted, but outdoor gatherings in public spaces can occur with up to 10 people.
Face masks will also still be mandatory indoors and outdoors.
Food and hospitality will open for seated service only, a density requirement of 1 person per 4sqm will apply, with a maximum of 100 people per venue.
Venues smaller than 100sqm can have up to 25 people before density requirements apply.
Retail can also open and personal services such as beauty and tattooing can resume. Face masks can be removed where required for the service to be performed.
Religious gatherings and ceremonies are allowed, with density requirements of 1 person per 4sqm, and no more than 100 people total indoors and 300 people outdoors per venue.
Weddings and funerals are also able to have up to 50 people at a venue.
This limit doesn't include infants under 12 months of age, or the people required to conduct the service.
Community sport is open for all ages, including training and competition. Only the minimum number of participants (players, coaches, referees, officials, and carers or parents) needed to train or compete are permitted to attend, subject to a density quotient of 1 person per 4 sqm.
Spectators are not permitted.
Entertainment venues can have up to 300 people per outdoor space with a density requirement of 1 person per 4 sqm and a cap of 100 people per space indoors.
Schools are also re-opening to face-to-face learning."
EARLIER: Only one of the latest Victorian COVID-19 cases was in quarantine throughout their infectious period.
The Department of Health and Human Services said 11 new local cases were reported in the 24 hours to midnight Sunday, with no new cases acquired overseas.
"The 11 new locally-acquired cases are all linked, and one has been in quarantine throughout their infectious period," the department tweeted on Monday morning.
There were 17,101 vaccine doses administered and 38,987 test results received.
Victoria has 103 active coronavirus cases about halfway through its sixth lockdown.
Mayor Danny Claridge said it was important people get tested if unwell but didn't believe one-off detections in Wangaratta or Benalla justified a statewide lockdown.
"If you've got two or three days of positive tests, then you would be very concerned.
"People who have had COVID can continue to shed fragments of the virus for up to eight weeks, so they're fully recovered people who are legitimately going through Benalla.
"There's no justification in continuing to keep regional Victoria locked down."
MORE COVID NEWS:
Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt has promised millions of doses of another mRNA type of vaccine will be available in coming months.
Mr Hunt expects the first million doses of the Moderna vaccine will arrive in Australia next month subject to final approval by the Therapeutic Goods Administration.
From today younger Aussies can start getting the Pfizer jab as Sydney looking no closer to ending weeks of COVID-19 lockdown and the number of deaths continuing to rise.
About 220,000 children aged between 12 to 15 years with underlying medical conditions, and Indigenous and remote community children will now have access to Pfizer.
In Sydney a 21,000-seat stadium will, for the next week, serve as a hub for Year 12 students from eight coronavirus-hit council areas in western and southwestern Sydney to get jabbed.
Meanwhile in Melbourne you don't even have to get out of the car as the nation's first drive-through COVID-19 vaccine begins operation.
As the lockdown was lifted in south-east Queensland, Cairns entered its first day of a three-day lockdown.
The state recorded nine new cases on Sunday including an unvaccinated taxi driver who was infectious in the Cairns community for 10 days.
IN OTHER NEWS:
- additional reporting ELLEN EBSARY, JANINE GRAHAM
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