Tourists will have plenty of opportunity to visit popular site during the fall
© Parks Canada
Green Gables Heritage Place, part of Lucy Maud Montgomery's Cavendish National Historic Site.
Cruise ship passengers beating a steady path to Green Gables Heritage Place will help extend the fall hours of the popular tourism destination.
Fourteen cruise ship arrivals in September and October will allow the site to open, for the most part, seven days a week over the next two months, says Karen Jans, field unit superintendent of Parks Canada in P.E.I.
Jans says a large number of visitors, from 300 to 500, make their way through the grounds from each cruise ship that calls port in Charlottetown.
Initially, based on previous analysis, Parks Canada had planned to close the site Sundays and Mondays in the fall. That move may have brought further unwelcome flak.
Tourism operators were furious when Parks Canada chose not to open Green Gables Heritage Place to visitors on Sundays or Mondays during the month of June. They expressed concern about the impact not having the site open on those days would have on the local economy.
Changes in the hours of operation were prompted by federal budget cuts.
Mike Forrest, chair of Cavendish Beaches and The Dune Shores Tourism Association, says tourism operators had “unfortunate negative experiences’’ with Green Gables being closed two days a week in June.
Kevin Mouflier, vice president of the Tourism Industry Association of P.E.I., says it is very important to the province throughout the tourism season to have Parks Canada venues open.
“A lot of tourists come to P.E.I. to see these important venues and if they are not available for them to tour it leaves a bad taste,’’ he says. “I’m very positive that we are moving in the right direction.’’
Jans says it is too early to predict what the hours of operation will be next June for Green Gables Heritage Place.
“We are going to continue to work with the industry to evaluate trends and consider the potential adjustments to dates and hours of operation based on market projections,’’ she says.