Here's a great reason to get off the COVID couch and get outdoors this month.
Conservation and Climate Minister Sarah Guillemard says in a news release, "We have been listening to how much Manitobans love their provincial parks and when the idea was raised by members of the public to expand the free access, we enthusiastically embraced it. All Manitobans should have the opportunity to enjoy the great outdoors and we are pleased to offer free park entry for a full week this summer."
Vehicle permits will not be required at any provincial park from July 12 to 18, but overnight camping fees will continue to apply. Manitoba's provincial park entry fees are among the lowest in Canada, though this week-long offer is designed to ensure the cost is not a barrier to anyone.
While being outdoors and active is important for physical and mental health, COVID-19 public health orders must be followed. For the most peaceful experience, Manitobans may wish to visit parks at non-peak hours such as on weekdays and during early weekend mornings. Information on COVID-19 restrictions at provincial parks is available at www.manitobaparks.com.
Manitobans who want to camp are encouraged to visit the Parks Reservation Service online at www.manitobaparks.com to view the campsite vacancy report in order to find available sites and cancellations. Though some campgrounds fill up every weekend, plenty of campsites remain available on weekdays. The Parks Reservation Service can also be contacted at 1-888-482-2267.
Park visitor centres and museums are currently closed under public health orders, though interpreters offer a range of guided experiences at several parks. Trail hikes, historic site tours and guided paddles are available throughout the week. Information on park events can be found at www.manitobaparks.com and under the events tab on the Manitoba Parks Facebook page at www.facebook.com/MBGovParks