EDMONTON -- Camping is expected to be a popular summer vacation option this year with many families opting to stay closer to home.

Elk Island National Park reopened its campgrounds this weekend.

“We have a lot of fun here with playing on the playground, and watching fires and eating s’mores,” five-year-old Sawyer Weursch told CTV News Edmonton. He’s camping at the park with his family.

“We thought it would be a little bit busier. But it’s not. I think because of COVID some people are still a little afraid to go out I guess,” said camper Samia Godoy.

There are some new rules in place for campers though. Interpretation activities are closed, and international travellers aren’t welcome in the park yet.

And while campers can now make reservations in Jasper and Banff, Elk Island is still limited to reservations booked months ago.

Showers and washrooms are open, but physical distancing is encouraged.

And Wuersch has some extra advice for campers.

“Stay away from bears. Stay away from skunks. And if you see a bear just run away. “

It’s sage advice from a young camper who’s planning to enjoy the outdoors a lot more this summer.

With files from CTV News Edmonton’s Sarah Plowman