This Friday, June 11, Ontario will take the first step to reopening the province as more than 60% of adults have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. It’s an important step that opens up a lot of opportunities for Ontarions, including some options for travel within the province.
Ontario is focused first on “resuming outdoor activities with smaller crowds where the risk of transmission is lower, and permitting limited retail with restrictions,” and as part of that, outdoor gatherings can now be up to 10 people, outdoor dining is allowed up to four people per table, and non-essential retail can open with 15% capacity.
Ontario’s shutdown will officially end with the start of step 1, which means that restrictions on travel within the province will be lifted. That means that you can drive or travel to other areas in Ontario starting on June 11.
Tourism is also included in Step 1, and that includes Ontario Parks, hotels and motels, landmarks, and so on.
For hotels, motels, resorts, and short term rentals, they can all open once again. Some amenities are not allowed to reopen just yet, like indoor pools. Ontario Parks, and other camping sites, will also start allowing overnight camping.
Outdoor zoos, landmarks, historic sites, and similar attractions can reopen at 15% capacity for any ticketed areas.
Outdoor pools, wading pools, and day camps will also be allowed.
And non-essential retail stores will reopen, for those not in malls, at a capacity of 15%.
Drive-in theatres will also be allowed to open once again at Step 1.
At the same time, exploring local parks, conservation areas, hiking, picnics, and outdoor gatherings up to 10 people will all be allowed on June 11, so it’s a great time to get out and enjoy the sun this summer.
This is just the first part in Ontario’s reopening plan, and the next step could happen within 21 days of June 11, assuming that 70% of adults are vaccinated, and 20% have been vaccinated with two doses. Step 3 can begin 21 days after Step 2, if “70 to 80% of adults vaccinated with one dose and 25% vaccinated with two doses.”
Canadian tourism has obviously suffered under the necessary COVID-19 restrictions, so it’s not a great time to start planning to get out and support our neighbours. This year, whenever you can, plan a trip within Canada. Whether it’s for a weekend or week, any travel and tourism activities will help support the sector, and that means supporting other Canadians.
Travel within Canada is possible already, however it’s important to note that many provinces have restrictions in place still. For the time being, you should expect to quarantine for most travel in Canada at this time, but check the Government of Canada website for information on each province.
The government is not recommending travel outside of the country at this time.
We’re all eager to reopen Canada, so stay safe, get vaccinated, and if you can, help others get vaccinated. You can find more information about Ontario’s reopening plan at Ontario.ca.
Need ideas for places to visit? Watch my video on Murphy’s Point Provincial Park.