We try to understand visitor needs and interests to help us plan
facilities and develop services. The statistics used in this
section are from
We also conduct research and support others' research in parks in other
social science areas, natural sciences and best practices.
*For more recent numbers, read the 2011 Camper Satisfaction Survey Provincial Summary
- Every year, we collect statistics on visitation to Alberta's
- 8.5 million visits per year
- 7 million day use visits
- 1.5 million camping visits of at least one night
- For more information on annual visitation statistics, please
contact Roy Finzel at firstname.lastname@example.org or
- 93% of campers in Alberta's parks are from Alberta.¹
- 4.7% of campers are from British Columbia, with just over 2%
coming from elsewhere in Canada.¹
- Less than 1% of campers are from outside Canada.¹
- The average camping party size is 3.1 campers.¹
- 69% of visitors travel with their family; 23% travel with
- Albertans with higher education and higher incomes are more
likely to use provincial parks.²
- According to the 2008 Alberta Recreation Survey
- 88% of Albertans have visited a provincial park at some
- 77% had visited a provincial park in the last three
- According to the Survey of Albertans' Priorities for Provincial
Parks Report (2008), more than 40% of Albertans have visited in
a provincial park in the past three years.
- According to the 2011 "Survey of Albertans" research findings,
32% of Albertans visited a provincial park in the past year.
Increases & Decreases
The Survey of Albertans' Priorities for Provincial
Parks Report (2008) notes that:
- One third of provincial park users increased their use of parks
in the past 5 years.
- Most common reasons for increased park use: children getting
older and more leisure time/opportunity (i.e. retiremed
- 20% of provincial park users decreased their use of parks in
the past 5 years.
- Most common reasons for decreased park use: having young
children and poor health/loss of mobility.
- Park visits decline with age, particularly after the age of
According to the 2008
Alberta Recreation Survey, the reasons people don't visit
provincial parks are (in order of importance):
- preference for other forms of recreation;
- preference for other parks or recreation areas;
- parks are too far away; and
- barriers related to physical abilities, cost, equipment and
According to Survey of Albertans' Priorities for Provincial
Parks Report (2008), people don't visit Alberta's parks
- 40% use other parks or recreations areas - national, municipal,
private, other provinces;
- 30% are not interested in using parks;
- 24% cite barriers preventing their use of parks; and
- 8% say they don't visit parks due to lack of opportunity
(access, cost, travel distance, crowdedness).
- Most visits are planned, not spontaneous.¹
- The park is usually the main destination, not a stopover on a
- Visitors' most important reasons for choosing to visit a park:
nature appreciation; being with friends and family; relaxation;
wilderness setting; and safety and security.²
- Over one third of campers are first-time visitors to a
- Most visitors have been to the same park repeatedly.¹
- Most campers say they would return to the same campground
- The average length of stay is 3 nights.
- The most frequent activities done in provincial parks are
photography, wildlife viewing, picnicking and day hiking.²