Natural Destinations

National Parks strike a balance between access and conservation

Christina Leadlay
Published: Wednesday, 05/11/2005 12:00 am EDT

"It all started with the railroad," says Michael Wong of Parks Canada. "Banff was discovered when the railroad was being built, when the workers discovered the fabulous scenery and the hot springs," he says of Banff, Alberta, the first national park in the world, which was founded in 1885. 120 years later, Canada is home to 42 national parks scattered from coast to coast to coast, part of Parks Canada's national parks system plan aimed at having at least one park in each of the country's 39 national regions "which have been designated in unique landscape areas," says Mr. Wong, Acting Director General, National Parks Director at Parks Canada, a federal agency under the Minister of the Environment.

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