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27 Jan, Friday
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Montreal Families

Hassle-free camping in high demand

Billed as a way to camp more comfortably, Parks Canada has more than doubled the number of its hybrid camping structures, dubbed “oTENTiks,” for 2015. A cross between a tent and a cabin, these structures are intended to enhance visitor experience by creating a more convenient overnight stay. There will now be 238 across Canada, up from the 114 last year.

“The Parks Canada oTENTik offers the opportunity to experience hassle-free outdoor camping in some of Canada’s most spectacular places,” says François Duclos, Parks Canada manager of visitor experience infrastructures. “We continue to expand upon the wide variety of ways visitors can experience our national parks and connect with nature in ways they are most comfortable.”

This alternative to traditional camping is great for first-time campers and families with young children. The structures are furnished with a table, chairs and a bench, two queen-sized beds and a double bed. The site normally includes a picnic table as well as a fire pit. Additional amenities include a barbecue with utensils, deck chairs, electrical lighting and heating, a wood stove or propane heater, battery-powered lanterns and screened shelter over the picnic table. Showers and toilets are provided in nearby service buildings and kitchen shelters, where families can cook meals, are commonly located in close proximity to the cabins.

This summer, 37 oTENTiks are going up at new locations, such as the Cape Breton Highlands National Park in Nova Scotia and the Rideau Canal National Historic Site. Another 77 will be added to existing locations, such as Riding Mountain in Jasper and La Mauricie National Parks in Quebec (near Shawinigan), Manitoba and Alberta.

The price per night ranges from approximately $90 to $120 depending on the location, the season and the amenities offered (most can accommodate up to six people). Locations being considered in the expansion plans are Quebec’s historic canals including those in Lachine and Ste. Anne de Bellevue.You can reserve cabins by calling 1-877-737-3783 or visiting reservation.pc.gc.ca

Parks Canada will also offer Learn to Camp events again this summer at the Lachine Canal National Historic site on June 20 and 21, and for the first time at the Chambly Canal National Historic site on Aug. 8 and 9.

For more information, visit pc.gc.ca.

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