Gatineau Park packed for opening day of Fall Rhapsody, as NCC asks people to visit other areas of Ottawa-Gatineau

OTTAWA — The National Capital Commission closed parking lots and parkways in Gatineau Park on Saturday, as visitors took advantage of summer-like weather to check out the fall colours.

The NCC’s Fall Rhapsody kicked off on Saturday, celebrating the arrival of the vibrant fall colours across Ottawa and Gatineau. Activities are planned until Oct. 25.

On Twitter, the NCC announced just after 1 p.m. there would be intermittent closures of the Gatineau Park Parkways due to heavy traffic volumes.

Parking lots in Chelsea were also full on Saturday morning.

Free shuttle buses to tour Gatineau Park were cancelled for the opening weekend. The NCC said shuttle service was parked “due to public health restrictions linked to the pandemic.”

Instead of visiting Gatineau Park, the National Capital Commission is urging people to checkout the fall colours in other areas of Ottawa and Gatineau.

“To reduce congestion and crowding, especially because of the pandemic, this year we are encouraging people to experience the fall colours in places other than Gatineau Park,” said the NCC.

“The region has plenty of hidden gems tucked away from the crowds, especially outside of the Park, where physical distance will be much easier to maintain.”

If you do want to visit Gatineau Park, the NCC is urging you to visit on weekdays.

Visit the NCC’s website for more information on where to see the fall colours in the national capital region.

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