Earlier this year, Parks Canada announced that it would be waiving admission fees to all national parks in celebration of the country's 150th birthday. However, it may be a good idea to book your visit as early as possible, especially if you're considering one of the more popular sites.

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This past summer, Banff National Park in Alberta was booked close to capacity despite admission fees not being waived. It attracted approximately 1.6 billion visitors between April and July alone, which is almost a 5% increase from 2015. Waterton Lakes National Park, which is also in Alberta, also experienced a rise in visitor rates, seeing a 15% increase compared to last year.

Part of this staggering growth could be due in part to Canada's booming tourism as of late. The low dollar makes Canada a particularly attractive destination for travellers outside of the country.

Certain points of interests within the in-demand parks will have increased shuttle service an overflow parking in preparation for 2017. Still, Parks Canada officials advise Canadians to book through their online reservation system as early as possible (it will open as early as January 2017) or even to consider less popular sites to visit instead.

Those that currently possess a 2016 Parks Canada Discovery Pass will enjoy its extended validity for two years instead of the typical 12 months. In 2018, there are also plans to make park access free for all youth and new Canadians.


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