Conservation of Gatineau Park

Covering 36,131 hectares (361 square kilometres), the conservation park lies in an area where the Canadian Shield meets the St. Lawrence Lowlands and where the Gatineau River meets the Ottawa River.

Discover Gatineau Park

The National Capital Region's conservation park has many unique and diversified ecosystems and heritage features. Discover the Park's key points of interest on the map tour.

Gatineau Park Winter Passes

Just a few minutes from downtown Ottawa, Gatineau Park offers one of the largest networks of trails in North America. There is a fee to access the cross-country ski, snowshoe and snow biking trails. You can purchase a daily pass, or save with a season pass. Be sure to wear your pass in plain view.

Camping and overnight accommodations

Extend your outdoor adventure and spend the night in Gatineau Park – just minutes from downtown Ottawa-Gatineau. Nestled in the heart of a vast conservation park, campsites and ready-to-camp units are the perfect getaway from the daily routine, in every season.

Gatineau Park Master Plan

The plan envisions Gatineau Park as a model for protecting natural and cultural heritage.

Winter Activities

Tag your best Instagram photos with #GatineauPark for a chance to be featured in this gallery.

Guided Tours and activities

Take part in guided hikes with a nature interpreter, and discover Gatineau Park’s wildlife and ecosystems all year round.

Places to visit in Gatineau Park

Mackenzie King Estate

This 231-hectare country estate belonged to Canada’s 10th and longest-serving prime minister, William Lyon Mackenzie King. After spending almost 50 years (1903–1950) beautifying and expanding his property, King bequeathed his beloved estate to all Canadians.

Eardley Escarpment

The Escarpment is the dividing line between the rock of the Canadian Shield, which covers more than half of Canada, and the St. Lawrence Lowlands. It rises 270 metres from the floor of the Ottawa Valley, and extends over more than 30 kilometres.

King Mountain

The hilly landscape around King Mountain is part of the Canadian Shield, one of the oldest and hardest rock formations in the world. King Mountain is on the southern edge of the Canadian Shield, which in this area is marked by the cliffs of the Eardley Escarpment.

Lusk Cave

When the Wisconsin Glacier melted about 12,500 years ago, water trapped under the melting glacier was forced into cracks in the rocks. The marble of Lusk Cave eroded more quickly than surrounding rocks, causing a series of tunnels to form. Since then, Lusk Creek has continued to shape the cave.

Pink Lake

Pink Lake is meromictic, meaning that its upper and lower layers of water never mix. Normally a lake’s water layers mix completely each year during the spring and fall, because of water density, water and air temperature, and the wind. The mixing of lake waters distributes nutrients and oxygen evenly throughout the lake.

Scenic Lookouts

Experience the beauty of Gatineau Park thanks to these beautiful lookouts. 

Meech Lake

The closest lake to the city. Two beaches (O’Brien and Blanchet) and a launch for non-motorized boats. Also a great starting point for hiking.

Philippe Lake

With three sandy beaches, a large campground, boat rental facilities and plenty of hiking trails, your discovery options are nearly unlimited. A hike along the lake will take you to Lusk Cave, a superb example of a marble cave and a natural geological phenomenon.

La Pêche Lake

La Pêche Lake is the largest lake in Gatineau Park, and among the furthest from the Capital core.

Heritage and Culture in Gatineau Park

Occupation of the Gatineau Park area by pre-contact Indigenous populations dates back at least 9,000 years. In the 19th century, settlers and early industrialists were drawn to the area for its resources and closeness to Ottawa.

Summer Activities

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