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Victoria Day 2013 marks the opening of the Parks Canada vacation season, giving Canadians across the country a chance to discover Canada’s natural wonders and its treasured cultural attractions. Canada’s environment minister and minister responsible for Parks Canada, Peter Kent said that in 2013, “exciting new projects like Parks Canada’s collaboration with Google Street View are being spearheaded across the country and are helping create a stronger connection between Canadians and their treasured places – and Canadians are taking notice – as pre-season online reservations for Parks Canada are up by 35% compared to this time last year.” And Parks Canada has made significant efforts to proactively engage Canadians through exciting new opportunities like TENTik tents, which have been installed in a number of national parks across the country, and the now expanded Learn-to-Camp program. Activities like these will introduce camping to families as well as help those who remember the camping experiences of their youth but no longer own the equipment. It has also committed to the preservation and protection of Canada’s natural environment and is a world leader in conservation. As such, Parks Canada is embarking on this country’s most aggressive ecological restoration program ever and Canadians will have a chance to not only learn about the work being done to protect our treasured places; they can take part in some of these projects as well. A number of special celebrations are planned by Parks Canada in 2013, including the 300th anniversary of the founding of Louisbourg at the Fortress of Louisbourg National Historic site and Canadians can also rediscover the renovated Cave and Basin National Historic Site in Banff – the birthplace of Canada’s national parks. Kent observed that: “Canada’s national parks and national historic sites are the cornerstone of the tourism sector in Canada, and offer countless community and economic benefits. It is vitally important to continue supporting these special places, and this year our Government will be investing over $100 million into their infrastructure, through the Parks Canada budget, in every province and territory across the country.” For more, hike on over to or visits Parks Canada new online reservation site at .

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