COVID-19 ESSENTIAL INFO
If you have your heart set on a summer or fall visit, we recommend making your plans now. Explore our website for inspiration.
Current Status – Province-wide Emergency Brake
Step 1 Re-Opening begins June 11
Province-wide stay at home orders expired on June 2, moving Ontario closer to Step 1 of the Roadmap to Re-Open. However, until June 11, restrictions outlined in the ‘emergency brake‘ remain in effect, including limitations on gatherings, outdoor dining and retail shopping.
On June 11, the province will move into Step 1 of the re-opening plan. Accommodations can re-open, restaurants and tasting rooms can welcome guests for outdoor service with a maximum of 4 guests per table. Non-essential retail and certain outdoor activities are re-opening. For details on what is permitted and not, visit the Province’s Roadmap to Re-Open page.
- Travel between regions of Ontario is not encouraged at this time. The ’emergency brake’ restrictions remain in effect across Ontario. We encourage you to stay close to home now, and plan your Summer or Fall visit in advance.
- If you are planning a visit from another region in the future, please plan for responsible travel by limiting your travel group, limiting contact with others and taking advantage of take-out, curbside pick-up and activities in nature. Travel between regions of Ontario is still not encouraged by the Province. We’re moving in the right direction, but still not out of the woods yet.
- Some businesses are doing more than is required by the Province and the public health unit to keep their customers and staff safe. Please cooperate with COVID-19 protocols at County businesses.
- Face coverings are required in all indoor locations that are open to the public, as well as at farmers’ markets. Masking is encouraged in outdoor areas where physical distancing is not possible. For information about face covering requirements visit Hastings Prince Edward Public Health.
- Physical distancing is in effect – All visitors are advised to practice physical distancing whether indoors or outdoors on patios, beaches, parks, sidewalks etc.
- Avoid crowded areas
- Maintain a distance of 2 metres/6 feet from those around you
- Hastings Prince Edward Public Health is asking visitors to the region to visit their Digital Guestbook to assist with contact tracing.
- The Province has mandated that restaurants, bars and tour boat operators take names/contact info of at least one member of each party. Please cooperate with businesses as they fulfill this public health directive.
- Wash your hands and/or use hand sanitizer at every opportunity.
- Make a plan and call ahead. Capacity at restaurants, wineries, events and shops is greatly reduced. Accommodations book up quickly in peak season. Some businesses are requiring appointments. Spontaneity is fun, but we don’t want you to be disappointed. Make a plan in advance.
- Wherever possible, make a reservation. Call ahead for takeout or curbside pickup. Check directly with businesses about their hours, services and protocols. Check here for ideas of things to do when we are not in a Province-wide Shutdown, and things you can book in advance.
- During peak summer months, visit beaches in the early morning, evening or on weekdays. Beaches and outdoor spaces are especially busy in July and August and thousands of unprepared visitors are turned away every day. Do not head to the beach unless you have booked using the day-use permit reservation system. Check these channels before heading out:
- Know where the public washrooms are and use them! The County has prepared a map of public washrooms that are open and cleaned regularly. The only four-season public washrooms that remain open are behind the Bloomfield Town Hall and in Wellington Park, with a portable toilet available in Picton’s Benson Park.
- Please respect the natural spaces by:
- Taking your garbage with you if there are no garbage bins nearby.
- Avoiding crowded areas. Take a load off of mother nature.
- Respect closures and capacity limits, they are there to keep everyone safe and to protect fragile natural areas.
- Use public washrooms, or washrooms provided by the businesses you patronize, not the side of the road, the beach, the park, someone’s front lawn…
- Be patient and flexible. We’re all adjusting to a new reality and hiccups, lineups, mix-ups are bound to happen. Be patient and be kind. Everyone is doing their best.
- Consider visiting in the Fall or Winter. The cooler months are gorgeous in The County and the crowds are thinner. Let us welcome you with proper County hospitality when we have a bit more time and space.