Here's some good news for all you nature lovers! Ontario Provincial Parks reopening date is set for May 11 so it's time to get excited. However, there are some conditions that come with using the parks.
Premier Doug Ford and his ministers announced the exciting developments just a few days before the outdoor spaces are set to open their gates.
On May 11, 520 provincial parks and conservation reserves will open up across the province.
After that, the remaining 115 outdoor areas will then start letting people in on Friday.
"I encourage people to get out and enjoy the outdoors, but please do so in a responsible way. Practise physical distancing and follow the rules set out by health care officials to stop the spread of this virus," Ford said.
If you want to visit any of the parks or conservation reserves, they're all open for limited day-use only.
That includes activities like walking, hiking, biking and bird watching.
Plus, you can access all parks and conservation areas for day-use for free until the end of the month!
"People are eager to enjoy the warmer weather, stretch their legs and reconnect with nature," said Jeff Yurek, Minister of the Environment. "People should take note that not all amenities will be open and plan accordingly."
Since these outdoor areas are limited to day-use only, that means you won't be able to camp and stay overnight.
All buildings and facilities, which include washrooms, water taps, campgrounds, playgrounds and beaches, will also remain closed.
Before you head out to have an adventure, you can go online on May 11 and check which parks are part of the first reopening.
Over the next few weeks, Ontario Parks staff will be out doing maintenance and start-up procedures so that more recreational activities and facilities can become available.
The province's parks and conservation reserves cover more than nine million hectares of land so there is a lot to explore.
"As we continue to make progress in our fight to stop the spread of COVID-19, we are carefully and cautiously reopening the province," Ford said.
Ontario's Chief Medical Officer stated recently that people in the province need to be more serious about physical distancing.
So while you're out and about, remember to stay two meters apart and avoid speaking moistly.