Waterton Lakes Visitor Season is Warming Up

Dreaming of spending the summer outdoors? Memories await you at Parks Canada’s places from coast to coast to coast!

Whether you’re looking for adventure, fun outdoor activities for the whole family, a chance to explore history, or a break from the everyday, Parks Canada has 450 000 km² of protected areas with countless unique experiences to suit your needs.

Waterton Lakes National Park is open year round and ready to welcome visitors this 2019 season. There’s a fun outdoor activity for everyone in the park this spring and summer! This year there is a range of recreation activities, special events, volunteer opportunities and interpretation programs available for visitors from youngest to wisest as they discover and connect with the park.

If you love quieter experiences in Waterton Lakes National Park consider visiting during the early mornings, evenings, weekdays and shoulder seasons. To have the best time possible during your next visit, here are some tips to make the most of this Parks Canada’s place:

  • Get moving in the valley bottom – Bike, walk or run along the paved Kootenai Brown trail and enjoy the scenic vistas and unique plants and animals that call this place home.
  • Look for wildflowers along the Wishbone Trail – Take a jaunt along the trail, either by foot or bike, and try to spot the early-spring blooms of prairie crocus and glacier lilies.
  • Visit the International Peace Park Plaza – Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park is a UNESCO-designated World Heritage Site. Discover the world’s first international peace park at the new plaza.
  • Take part in a volunteer event – Participate in a volunteer event. Events listed on our website include controlling invasive plant species, counting wildflowers or exercising your green thumb in the native plant garden.
  • Visit Waterton’s townsite – The flowers are opening and so are the shops and restaurants in the Waterton townsite. Grab a bite, indulge your sweet tooth, update your wardrobe or explore your artistic side. Take a wander through town and see what catches your eye … or your stomach!

The Parks Canada Discovery Pass provides unlimited admission for a full year to Parks Canada’s places across the country. Canadians are encouraged to order their 2019 Discovery Passes online, or visit Parks Canada or partner retailer locations.

To make the most of their Parks Canada experience, visitors are encouraged to plan their trip in advance, by visiting the Parks Canada’s website and signing up for the e-newsletter, to be among the first to find out about new and noteworthy events and activities, special offers, trip planning ideas and much more – all delivered directly to their inboxes! Visitors can also download the Parks Canada’s mobile application, and follow Parks Canada on social media for destination inspiration and to help plan their perfect visit.

Parks Canada’s places belong to all Canadians. That is why the Government of Canada is pleased to continue to offer free admission to all Parks Canada’s places for youth aged 17 and under. By encouraging young people to discover nature and connect with history, we can help to inspire the next generation of stewards for these protected places.

In celebration of diversity, Parks Canada continues to offer free admission to new Canadian citizens for one year through the Institute for Canadian Citizenship’s Canoo mobile app. Visiting Parks Canada’s national heritage places is a great way for Canadians to experience the outdoors and learn more about our environment and heritage.

Parks Canada’s staff at Waterton Lakes National Park are excited to welcome new and returning guests back to experience everything that Waterton has to offer.


“After the Kenow wildfires of 2017, it’s great to see Waterton Lakes National Park continue to reopen trails and facilities throughout the park. This is a special place to connect with wilderness and learn about the area’s rich culture and history. I encourage Canadians and all visitors to experience one of the places Canadians love best.”

The Honourable Catherine McKenna,

Minister of Environment and Climate Change and Minister responsible for Parks Canada

Quick Facts

  • Waterton Lakes National Park was Canada’s 4th national park, originally protected in 1895. It represents the southern Rocky Mountains Natural Region – where some of the most ancient mountains in the Rockies abruptly meet the prairie. It is a landscape shaped by wind, fire, and flooding; with a rich variety of plants and wildlife.
  • Canada’s network of protected areas play an important role in helping to mitigate the impacts of climate change by protecting and restoring healthy, resilient ecosystems and contributing to the recovery of species at risk.
  • Visitor safety is important to Parks Canada. Visitors can do their part by getting informed and being prepared by planning an activity and sharing that information with a friend or family before they begin. Learn about the wildlife in the park/site you will be visiting to help us keep wildlife wild by checking out our top ten tips: https://www.pc.gc.ca/en/pn-np/ab/waterton/securite-safety.
  • Enter Parks Canada’s Discover Canada contest for a chance to win an amazing trip to Canada’s North- Yukon! In collaboration with our proud partners: MEC, CIBC, Air Canada, and Air North.
  • The possession and consumption of cannabis is now legal and is strictly regulated in Canada. For more information about cannabis in Canada, please visit: Canada.ca/cannabis. 

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