The health and safety of Canadians, visitors and Parks Canada team members is our top priority. In June and July, some Parks Canada places began a safe, gradual reopening of outdoor areas, some camping services, and some indoor areas at national historic sites.

We are only opening places and activities where risks can be managed, according to the advice of public health experts. For your safety, at all times, avoid all places and areas that are closed.

Openings and services differ across the country. Please check the Parks Canada national information portal dedicated to COVID-19 for regular updates.

We continue to deliver services critical for Canadians, including highway maintenance, fire response, dam operations and water management on historic waterways, and avalanche control, among others.

Update for July 30, 2020 - Non-medical masks and face coverings

We strongly encourage all visitors to wear a non-medical mask or face covering when visiting indoor public spaces at any Parks Canada place. When you visit a Parks Canada place, you may see signs reminding you that this is what we recommend.

An indoor public space is any space with walls and a roof that can be accessed by the members of the public.

If a Parks Canada place is within a jurisdiction where wearing a non-medical mask or face covering is mandatory, visitors will be asked to follow this requirement.


Starting June 1, 2020

Starting June 1st 2020, the Rideau Canal National Historic Site will offer limited visitor access and basic services along the entire system.

Visitors will be able to access the following services and facilities:

  • lockage, boat launches, access points and mooring areas;
  • day-use areas, including green spaces, picnic areas, and parking lots;
  • day-use trails, including some cycling access on designated trails and pathways;
  • lockstation grounds; and
  • public toilets where enhanced cleaning protocols will be implemented
  • camping (For boaters, paddlers and vessels under power only)
Visiting the Rideau Canal National Historic Site will be different than it has been in the past. Visitors are asked to plan ahead by checking the Rideau Canal National Historic website before they travel.

Important information about your visit to the Rideau Canal National Historic Site

What's Open (updated June 17, 2020)
  • Lockstations and lockstation grounds
  • Boat Launches
  • Access points
  • Mooring areas
  • Day use areas (including green spaces, picnic areas, and parking lots)
  • Day-use trails (Including some cycling access on designated trails and pathways)
  • Public toilets
  • Camping (For boaters, paddlers and vessels under power only)
What's closed (updated July 31, 2020)
  • Group activities
  • Public events
  • Camping facilities (Drive-up camping, camping for cyclists/ hikers, oTENTiks and reservable camping)
  • Visitor Centres
Camping during COVID-19 (updated on June 17, 2020)
 
Camping for boaters (paddlers and vessels under power) at most lockstations on the Rideau Canal will be available effective June 22, 2020.

  • Drive-up camping and camping for cyclists and hikers at lockstations will not be available until further notice.

  • Unfortunately, due to COVID-19 mitigations, the Rideau Canal will be unable to offer oTENTiks or reservable camping for the remainder of the 2020 Navigation Season.

  • camping space is allocated by the Lockmaster on a first-come, first-served basis and capacity at the station are at the discretion of the Lockmaster. Please note that when determining capacity, the Lockmaster must consider the requirement for appropriate social distancing.

  • Group camping at Rideau Canal lockstations is still suspended and will is subject to approval though visitor services on a case by case basis. Contact 613-283-5170 x278
Your safety when visiting
 

  • Nautical distancing
  • Wash your hands
  • Touchless locking
  • Follow direction from Lock Staff
  • Cashless payment preferred

Visitors should follow the advice of public health experts, including necessary hygiene practices and physical distancing of two metres from others.

For More information

Special Events permitting: accepting electronic applications

Water Management
 

Parks Canada’s water management responsibilities on the Rideau Canal are considered part of the Agency’s critical services to the public and continue to be carried out on a 24/7 basis with the same level of commitment in terms of resources and effort.

Parks Canada maintains the Ontario Waterways Water Management InfoNet on this website. The InfoNet contains background information on water management practices, water management updates, frequently asked questions about water management, various reports on water management, and the most recent water level of lakes along both the Rideau Canal.

The primary source of relevant local flood forecasting information for residents and visitors continues to be their respective Conservation Authority or the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry.

Infrastructure projects
 

The health and safety of Canadians, visitors, and Parks Canada team members is of the utmost importance to the Agency. Parks Canada’s infrastructure program is considered part of the Agency’s critical services to the public. We will continue to communicate if there are any changes in project status or schedule that impact the public.

Management plans
 

The health and safety of Canadians, visitors, and Parks Canada team members is of the utmost importance to the Agency. Parks Canada is following the advice of public health experts and implementing measures to support Canada’s efforts to limit the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) and reduce risks to employees and visitors.

As a result, Parks Canada has also suspended all public consultations and formal engagement with stakeholders and Indigenous peoples on management plans until further notice.

Management plans are developed through consultation and input from various people and organizations, including Indigenous peoples, local and regional residents, visitors, and the public.

The Agency is currently focusing its efforts on critical operations. There is, therefore, limited capacity to undertake full and meaningful management planning consultations at this time. Parks Canada also recognizes that the focus of the Canadian public, Indigenous partners and our stakeholders is on public health and safety and the economy.

F

Parks Canada is committed to resuming all management planning activities, including public consultations and formal engagement with stakeholders and Indigenous peoples, once operations return to normal and capacity allows.

Stay informed