Looking to book a summer camping trip at an Ontario provincial park? In some cases, it may already be too late, according to the Ottawa Citizen.
Ontario Parks has seen an almost 100% increase in reservations in 2021 so far as people search for solace from the pandemic in the great outdoors.
According to the Ontario Parks website, campers have made 58,475 reservations already for July and August, up from 29,504 for the same period in 2020.
Private campgrounds are also seeing a surge of interest.
“We have never seen this before, ever,” said Alexandra Anderson, executive director of Camping In Ontario. Its members are privately and publicly owned small campground businesses.
Anderson said reservations have not slowed down this year. “December was quiet but as soon as January hit, it was extremely busy once again.”
Ontario Parks has recommended campers try a new adventure and travel to a different park than they may have first intended. The most popular provincial parks are Algonquin Provincial Park, Killbear Provincial Park, Pinery Provincial Park, Sandbanks Provincial Park, and Bon Echo Provincial Park. Attempting to book at a smaller provincial park increases the chance of getting a spot.
“I think these bookings have increased because it’s an extremely safe way to have a vacation during COVID. If you’re in an RV, you’re using your own washroom; most sites have at least a six-foot barrier in between them. You can walk around your campsite without having to worry about wearing a mask. It’s a very safe option for people,” Anderson said.
“Some campgrounds haven’t released summer inventory yet, so there’s more to come. The provincial parks open up a new section every month. There’s still availability. Look to go between Monday and Friday to secure a spot.”