Here’s What You Need to Know About Canadian Park Closures
Canada’s national and provincial parks have announced closures and service limitations in order to curb the spread of COVID-19. Many of these details have been shared on a province-by-province basis. We thought it might be useful to put together a cross-country summary of the information as it stands on May 22, 2020.
As Canada continues to manage the ongoing pandemic, we are now able to provide a list of provincial parks that have begun re-opening to the general public. Check this page often for more updates on openings and closures.
This includes Canada’s national parks, national historic sites, and marine protected areas. Areas of some parks where physical distancing is possible for visitors will reopen June 1 for day use only.
All campaign facilities will remain closed until at least June 21.
All parks and protected areas are closed until further notice. Camping is suspended until May 31, 2020 but that could still change.
There are talks of the parks beginning to reopen in phases, but the timeline is unclear.
BC Parks will reopen for day use in mid-May and for camping at the beginning of June, but only if new COVID-19 cases stay in a decline.
Most BC provincial parks will open for day-use in time for the May long weekend.
On June 1, BC Parks will re-open most campsites and backcountry camping. There will be measures in place to ensure physical distancing rules are still in place, such as reduced numbers in the campgrounds and they will only be open to BC residents.
Access to provincial parks and public lands will resume on May 1. Alberta Parks’ online reservation system will once again be available May 14 for bookings beginning June 1. Alberta parks will only allow bookings for residents of the province.
Campgrounds will only allow campers from in province, and at 50% capacity.
As of May 4 parks will be open for limited day use for hiking, biking and usage of boat launches. Physical distancing measures will still be in effect within parks, and are asking people to only attend parks alone or with those in the same household. Starting May 4, Saskatchewan residents will be able to start booking camp sites, but camping won’t actually start until June 1.
Provincial parks still remain open for people to enjoy the outdoors, but physical distancing measures are still in effect. Public facilities are closed, including washrooms and playgrounds.
Outdoor recreation will be allowed with the provinces first phase of their reopening plan which starts May 4.
Ontario has released a phased plan to start loosening emergency measures, there is no start date for when these measures will start. That being said, reopening parks is included in the first phase of the plan.
Ontario Parks announced extended closure until May 31.
Ontario parks and Conservation Reserves begin to open for day-use only May 11th. Please check this website before heading out as not all areas will be open as of May 11th. Public facilities including washrooms and play structures remain closed. Physical distancing measures must still be taken while visiting.
The majority of Ontario Parks opened May 16th, but camping remains closed until further notice. All services and public facilities also remain closed.
Quebec parks will remain closed until further notice, noting that they have started to work on measures for reopening safely when the time comes.
Quebec Sepaq parks have begun a slow reopening. Only select areas have been opened and only for day-use at this time.
Newfoundland and Labrador
Reservations for camping in the province’s parks are on hold until further notice. Parks are open for day-use as long as physical distancing rules are still followed.
Prince Edward Island
Trails within provincial parks remain open for walking and cycling but physical distancing rules still apply. All playgrounds are closed until further notices. And opening of bookings for reservations in provincial parks has been delayed until June 3.
Provincial Parks will open June 5th with the exception of Kings Castle Provincial Park. Play structures remain closed. Provincial campgrounds will open on June 26. At this time, campgrounds will only be open for seasonal campers who reserved their site prior to March 31, 2020. Physical distancing rules still apply.
As of April 24, provincial parks have reopened with some areas remaining closed due to safety hazards. Physical distancing rules are still in place within parks.
Parks in Nova Scotia still remain closed and reservations for the 2020 camping season are currently on hold until further notice.
Effective immediately, Nova Scotia has eased up on some public health restrictions. Provincial and municipal parks are now open, but playgrounds and public facilities will remain closed.
Provincial beaches and parks for day-use opened as of May 16th. Camping and public facilities remain closed until further notice.
People may still use park trails and green spaces for recreation while practicing physical distancing and following other requirements of the Chief Medical Officer of Health. Services in territorial parks and campgrounds will remain closed until June.
Trails still remain open to the public but people are asked to respect physical distancing rules even on trails. Facilities and camping reservation opening has been delayed until further notice.
Nature and the outdoors will help us get through the COVID-19 situation, even with park closures and service limitations. Stay updated with Nature Canada’s stories in the coming weeks to hear our ideas for how nature can help you stay physically and mentally healthy—sign up for email updates in the grey box to the right.
Nature Canada thanks the frontline medical workers for their efforts during this time. We follow the advice of the World Health Organization and Health Canada. Please visit these two websites for the latest information on how to protect you and your family from COVID-19.
Nature is also important to our health and well-being and we hope you’ll consider supporting our efforts to save nature. Thank you for caring!
Yours in nature, the Nature Canada team.