Parks Canada is monitoring the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) situation closely and will communicate regularly. Please visit our COVID-19 information page and social media channels frequently for information and updates.


Last updated September 24, 2020


Resumption of services and access

Are all of the day use visitor facilities open at all Parks Canada places?

Parks Canada operates a wide variety of federal protected places across Canada. There may be different measures in place for limiting the spread of COVID-19 in different jurisdictions. This means that visitor access and services may vary across the country.

Visitors should not expect the kind of experience that they have had in the past. Parks Canada is adapting to the COVID-19 situation and visitor access and services will be limited.

Parks Canada's COVID-19 information page provides detailed information on what locations are open, what visitors can expect, how to prepare for their visit and what services may be available. Visitors are asked to plan ahead by checking the website before they travel.

Are trails at Parks Canada places open?

Visitors are permitted to access some trails, day use areas, and green spaces. Those who choose to access open trails must obey all signage and closures and should be aware that some trails may be one-way directional or access may be limited.

They must follow the advice of public health experts on things like hand hygiene, group sizes, and physical distancing. They must also be conservative in their choices to avoid injury and minimize any need for emergency response. They must leave no trace and remove their garbage.

Visitors should not expect the kind of experience that they have had in the past. Parks Canada is adapting to the COVID-19 situation and visitor access and services will be limited.

Some trails at Parks Canada locations will remain closed for public safety, for the protection of ecological or cultural resources, because of human-wildlife interaction concerns, or limited search and rescue capacity.

Are lockage and mooring on heritage waterways available?

As of June 1, 2020, recreational boating and water access is allowed at some locations. This includes lockage, docks, mooring and boat launches.

Parks Canada's COVID-19 information page provides information on what locations are open, what visitors can expect, how to prepare for a visit and what services may be available. Visitors are asked to plan ahead by checking the website before they travel.

Visitors should not expect the kind of experience that they have had in the past. Parks Canada is adapting to the COVID-19 situation and visitor access and services may be limited.

Are national historic sites open?

Parks Canada began to gradually re-open some national historic sites across the country on July 13, 2020.

Parks Canada’s network of protected places is large and diverse. Visitor access, services, and opening days and hours for national historic sites managed by the Agency will vary across the country depending on local circumstances.

Some of our national historic sites will soon be closing as part of their regular season. Parks Canada's COVID-19 information page provides information on what locations are open, what visitors can expect, how to prepare for a visit and what services may be available. Visitors are asked to plan ahead by checking the website before they travel.

Are interpretation programs such as outdoor guided walks, tours and talks taking place?

Visiting a national historic site or national park will be different than in previous years.

Parks Canada’s network of protected places is large and diverse. Visitor access and services vary across the country depending on local circumstances.

Parks Canada's COVID-19 information page provides detailed information on what locations are open, what visitors can expect, how to prepare for a visit and what services may be available.

Is fishing now permitted in national parks?

Recreational fishing may be allowed at some Parks Canada places. Please call ahead to ensure fishing permits are available and or can be validated.

Parks Canada's COVID-19 information page provides detailed information on what locations are open, what visitors can expect, how to prepare for a visit and what services may be available. Visitors are asked to plan ahead by checking the website before they travel.

Camping

Has Parks Canada opened all campgrounds in all national parks?

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

Parks Canada will begin to gradually offer camping services at some national parks across the country starting on June 22, 2020. Depending on local circumstances, it is possible that some campgrounds will remain closed for the season.

Visitors should not expect the kind of experience that they have had in the past. Parks Canada’s network of protected places is large and diverse. Visitor access and services for camping will vary across the country depending on local circumstances.

Is backcountry camping open?

Back country camping resumed at some locations beginning on June 22.

Will I be able to camp without a reservation?

Parks Canada strongly recommends you have a reservation before you arrive at one of our campgrounds.

Will Parks Canada be honouring out of province camping reservations?

Parks Canada is honouring out of province/territory camping reservations. However, visitors must follow local and provincial or territorial travel restrictions, including requirements for self-isolation. Visitors must be aware of any travel restrictions or requirements and plan well in advance.

Due to the nature of shared and common spaces at Parks Canada campgrounds, visitors must complete any requirements for self-isolation before arriving to camp at a Parks Canada place. It is not possible to complete self-isolation periods at Parks Canada campgrounds.

Will reservations held by international visitors be honoured?

Given limitations on international travel, all existing reservations from international visitors (including visitors from the United States of America) arriving up to and including November 4, 2020, will be automatically cancelled and refunded in full.

If a quarantine or self-isolation period is required for people entering a province, will I be able to quarantine or self-isolate at a Parks Canada campground?

Visitors must follow local and provincial or territorial travel restrictions, including provincial/territorial requirements for self-isolation. Visitors to Parks Canada places must be aware of any travel restrictions or requirements and plan well in advance.

Due to the nature of shared and common spaces at Parks Canada campgrounds, visitors must complete any provincial or territorial requirements for self-isolation before arriving to camp at a Parks Canada place. It is not possible to complete self-isolation periods at Parks Canada campgrounds.

If I decide not to travel and cancel my campsite reservation, will I be charged a cancellation fee?

Visitors with reservations that were created before June 2020 who decide to cancel their camping reservations will get a full refund of all associated fees. Visitors with reservations created more recently who decide to cancel will be subject to the normal terms and conditions as outlined during their reservation process. Due to the volume of cancellations this year, refunds may take some time.

Health and safety

What precautions will be put in place at Parks Canada places to ensure the health and safety of visitors?

The health and safety of visitors, employees, and all Canadians is of the utmost importance. Parks Canada will be following the advice of public health experts and implementing measures for cleaning, hygiene, and physical distancing at all places open for visitation.

Cleaning frequency will be increased and the recommended number of people permitted in a facility at the same time will be limited. Visitors will notice new signage reminding them of physical distancing recommendations and other health and safety protocols, including waiting outside facilities. In many places you will find plexiglass barriers and spacing aids to limit exposure, and to keep both visitors and Parks Canada employees safe.

In all indoor locations where two-metre distancing can’t be maintained and physical barriers such as plexiglass are not possible, Parks Canada employees will be wearing non-medical masks or face coverings.

Only those places where measures can be implemented to minimize healthy and safety risks will be open to the public. Some facilities and services will remain closed.

How should I prepare when I visit a Parks Canada place?

Parks Canada's COVID-19 information page provides detailed information on what locations are open, what visitors can expect, how to prepare for a visit and what services may be available. You should plan ahead by checking the website before you travel.

Parks Canada suggests the following before travelling to a Parks Canada place:

  • Research local, provincial or territorial travel restrictions, including requirements for self-isolation;
  • Local services in many communities may be limited and many services remain closed across the country. Visitors should ensure they have a place to stay reserved in advance before they travel;
  • Prepare to be self-sufficient. Bring a trip kit that includes extra hygiene supplies such as hand sanitizer, soap, non-medical masks or face coverings, garbage bags and a table cloth. Bring your own water and food.
  • Know your skill level - Visitors are responsible for their own safety and should be cautious when engaging in activities in order to avoid injury and/or getting lost to help minimize the demands placed on emergency response, search and rescue teams, and on the health care system.

Visitors have a shared responsibility in keeping themselves and others safe and are encouraged to take the necessary precautions to respect public heath recommendations including physical distancing, group size limits, wearing a mask or face covering and good hand hygiene measures.

Will I have to wear a mask when I’m indoors, and if so, will the masks be provided?

Visitors are encouraged to follow advice from public health experts and wear masks in public spaces where physical distancing may be difficult to maintain.

In provinces, territories or municipalities where face masks are required to be worn indoors, visitors and employees will be expected to wear non-medical masks or face coverings.

Visitors should be prepared to be self-sufficient when they visit and pack extra hygiene supplies such as hand sanitizer, and a mask if they are concerned about physical distancing.

Fees and passes

Will Parks Canada be charging admission fees at this time?

Yes, Parks Canada will be charging admission fees.

The Agency is working to ensure that measures are in place to safely collect fees and protect the health of employees and visitors. Canadians are encouraged to plan ahead before they visit and check Parks Canada's COVID-19 information page for more information.

Parks Canada may not be charging fees at some places where fee collection cannot be done while ensuring the safety of visitors and Parks Canada team members. Fees may not be collected at some places where there is a limited visitor offer and at many national historic sites where only the grounds or gardens are open.

Will people be refunded for passes?

For current pass holders, Parks Canada will automatically extend the end date of Discovery Passes for the full duration of the suspension period.

For visitors who hold a Discovery Pass which was valid in March 2020, Parks Canada will automatically extend the end date of these Discovery Passes by 4 months. This covers the three-month suspension of visitor services, plus the gradual resumption of visitor services during the month of June.

For example, a Discovery Pass that would have originally expired March 2020 will now expire July 2020. Similarly, a Discovery Pass that would have expired September 2020 will now expire January 2021.

Can I currently buy an annual pass?

Management plans

All Parks Canada consultations and formal engagement on management plans are suspended until further notice.

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.

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.