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Conservation Areas

Conservation Areas Overview

Important Inclement Weather Notice:

Conservation area visitors are reminded to take precaution when attending natural areas and trails, especially during the fall/winter season when inclement weather and conditions may arise. In the event of inclement weather, NPCA conservation areas remain open, but activities and services may be limited and facilities such as the Centre for Conservation at Ball’s Falls may be closed. Please be mindful of NPCA staff who work to ensure primary parking areas are cleared and plowed when visiting, and note that all trails are natural, and not maintained for winter recreation. Please check NPCA conservation area pages on Facebook for closure postings, as these are updated regularly.

 

Please note that Catch and Release policy applies for all NPCA Conservation Areas except St. Johns Conservation Area. 

Waterbodies within the Niagara Peninsula Watershed fall into Fisheries Management Zones 16 (inland), 19 (Lake Erie and Niagara River upstream of Niagara Falls) and 20 (Lake Ontario and Niagara River below Niagara Falls).

NATURE PLUS PASS 

Visitors are encouraged to experience the Niagara Peninsula watershed with a NaturePlus Pass - a fantastic value for regular conservation area visitors, providing unlimited access to our conservation areas. Membership passes are now available!


The NPCA is one of 36 Conservation Authorities in the Province of Ontario and manages 41 Conservation Areas within the Niagara Peninsula watershed held in public trust for recreation, heritage preservation, conservation, and education. These natural and shared greenspaces marry nature, culture and adventure to create limitless opportunities for discovery.

Check out the map below and come visit a Conservation Area near you! For more information on recreational opportunities such as birding, hiking, swimming, and fishing, visit npca.ca/recreation.

Visitors are encouraged to experience the Niagara Peninsula watershed with a NaturePlus Pass - a fantastic value for regular conservation area visitors, providing unlimited access to our conservation areas. Membership passes are now available!

Visitors are asked to follow these guidelines when at NPCA conservation areas: EN FRANÇAIS

  • Wear a mandatory face mask or covering in all public enclosed spaces, including washrooms, buildings, and gatehouses 
  • Practice physical distance by staying 2 metres (6 feet) apart from other visitors
  • All visitors must vacate conservation area by posted park closure time.
  • Stay on trail. Respect wildlife and plant-life.
  • Dispose of trash in designated receptacle or take your trash with you when leaving the property.
  • Littering is prohibited.
  • All pets must remain on leash at all times, and owners must clean up after them. Pets are not permitted on swimming beaches.
  • Alcohol is prohibited at all NPCA Conservation Area day-use areas.
  • Damage to or removal of wildlife, vegetation or natural features is prohibited.
  • Gas-powered watercraft, all-terrain and off-road vehicles are prohibited.
  • All visitors must adhere to provincial and municipal public health guidelines at all times.
  • NPCA reserves the right to restrict access to Conservation Areas at any time due to capacity limits, public health restrictions, and/or health and safety purposes.

Research within NPCA Conservation Areas

If you are a student, member of a research group or academic institution seeking to conduct research within an NPCA conservation area, you will need to apply for an NPCA Research Permit and receive approval in advance. Please contact NPCA Ecologist Kim Frohlich at kfrohlich@npca.ca or at 905-788-3135 ext. 241

ORGANIZED GROUP VISIT TO PASSIVE CONSERVATION AREAS

School Groups and Organized Groups wishing to visit NPCA Conservation Areas for self-guided activities are subject to admission fees. Ecological tour or demonstrations by experts are available for school groups wishing to visit NPCA Conservation Areas. Click here to find out more

TOUR GUIDE BUSINESSES OPERATING IN NPCA CONSERVATION AREAS

As per the Conservation Authorities Act R.R.O. 1990, Reg. 123, s. 4, the NPCA regulates the operation of businesses within conservation areas. An NPCA Tour Guide Business Permit is required for operators planning to conduct tours within NPCA Conservation Areas. Operators must apply in advance for a permit and must hold an NPCA NaturePlus Membership Pass.

If you are a tour guide business operator please contact NPCA Manager, Conservation Area Services at apowell@npca.ca or ext. 326 to receive a NPCA Tour Guide Business Permit Application. These are $60 (inc. HST) and are valid through December 31 of the calendar year in which they are approved.