Hiking and Walking on the Bonavista Peninsula

a woman takes a photo of cliffs and icebergs from the Klondike TrailThe Bonavista Peninsula is a hikers paradise. The Artisan Inn in Trinity can serve as an excellent home base for those who wish to explore the various hikes and walks along the Discovery Trail.  With a variety of coastal and inland trails, rated from easy to difficult, there is something for both walkers and hikers.  Spend the day hiking, return to comfortable accommodations and curl up in a blanket with a glass of wine on the front deck while resting your feet!  Hand carved wooden hiking sticks are available for Artisan Inn guests who do not wish to travel with their own.  

Maps of each hiking Trail can be found on the Hike Discovery Travel App  

 

TRINITY – UPPER & LOWER GUN HILL TRAIL

The view from the top of Gun Hill shows a whale tail shaped area of land surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean

To Learn more about this trail visit the Gun Hill Page on the Explore Trinity section of our website

Easy (very top can be difficult)

45 Minutes – 1 Hour return

 

PORT REXTON – SKERWINK TRAIL

The Skerwink Trail in Port RextonLocated 10 minutes from Trinity

Moderate – Difficult

1 1/2 – 2 Hours

Just minutes from Trinity, in Trinity East, Skerwink has been selected as one of the top 35 walks in North America and Europe (Aug 2003) of Travel and Leisure magazine World’s Best Awards issue.

The trail is rated Moderate and takes approximately 2 hours to complete (longer if you are passionate about photography) and is a 5.3km coastal loop. At certain locations hikers may feel as though they are standing at the edge of the world.  Steeper sections of the trail have been lined with stairs and board walks cover any boggy sections.  Many lookouts have been built with benches allowing visitors to stop and enjoy the view.

Moose, foxes, bald eagles, whales, seabirds and icebergs are often spotted.

Directions from the Artisan Inn’s Twine Loft:

Leave the town of Trinity

Turn Right onto Route 239 towards Route 230

Turn Right on Route 230 towards Bonavista

Turn Right after large yellow gas station

Drive approx 5 minutes pass one church and then arrive at a parking lot across from a second church and large sign with the map of the Skerwink Trail be to your your left.

Additional Links

Skerwink Trail: Hike Discovery Site & Map Link

In the Press: Hike Bike Travel

CHAMPNEY’S WEST – FOX ISLAND TRAIL

A board walk along the ocean overlooking fox island encircled by pack ice

Easy – Moderate

Loop 5.5km

The Experience

The trail displays the beautiful coastal scenery, views of the surrounding communities and local wildlife, then to finish with walking through the fishing village of Champney’s West. Take the time to walk down and view the fishing stages and maybe get your opportunity to chat to a local resident.

Directions from Trinity

Leave Trinity. Turn Right onto Route 239.  Turn Right onto Route 230. Drive Past Port Rexton and turn right onto Route 230-17 to Champney’s West The trail parking lot is located on the right, 2km from the turn off and across from the old cemetery.

Additional Links:

Fox Island Trail: The Hike Discovery Website and Trail Maps

Trip Advisor Reviews

PORT UNION – MURPHY’S COVE TRAIL

Medium

Distance 7.7km Loop

The Experience

This coastal loop trail will take you through the abandoned community of Murphy’s Cove and overlooks the Green Island Lighthouse.This looped trail has a variety of headlands that provide viewing platforms where surrounding communities, whales, seabirds and fishing vessels can be photographed. The halfway point provides a lookout where users can view the Green Island Lighthouse, one of the last remaining manned lighthouses in the province. The trail follows the coastline offering great photo opportunities.

Directions from Trinity

Drive out of Trinity and turn right onto Route 239.  Turn right onto Route 230.  Drive 30 minutes to Port Union and turn into the town.  Follow the blue hiker sign to Reid Road.  The entrance of the Trail is located next to St Catherine’s Haven retirement home.

Additional Links

Murphy’s Cove: The Hike Discovery Website & Trail Maps

Trip Advisor Reviews

 

BONAVISTA – CAPE SHORE TRAIL

2 piles of rocks lie on either side of the picture with a view of an iceberg in the ocean between them.

Gentle

3.5 Kilometers each way

The Experience:

A 3.5 km trail along the coastline that runs parallel to the main road from the Town of Bonavista to the Cape. This trail provides one with a spectacular view of Bonavista Bay as you enjoy a leisurely walk on a marked trail to the Cape Bonavista Lighthouse. Along this route you can enjoy the rugged coast line while watching for birds and whales (in season). Stop for a picnic along the trail or at the John Cabot Municipal Park.

Directions from Trinity:

Leave Trinity. Take Route 230 from the 239 turn off direction Bonavista.  Once in Bonavista, follow Confederation Drive (route 230) until you see the right hand turn onto Cape Shore Road. Continue on Cape Shore Road until you pass the Ocean View Cabins where a parking lot will be on your right.

 

ELLISTON / BONAVISTA – KLONDIKE TRAIL

Gentle – Moderate

3km each way

The Experience:

Located on the northern section of Elliston, it was regularly used years ago as a horse and cart trail, leading from Elliston to the community of  Spillar’s Cove. This walk takes you from forest to wetlands, heathlands to sea. Learn about the plants and animals inhabiting our area while looking for our provincial bird, the puffin. You may also see whales, kittiwakes and other sea life as well as spectacular coastal scenery. This area was initially called Bird Island Cove and offers hikers spectacular oceanfront scenery with plenty of seabirds and wildlife along the way. – Text courtesy of Hike Discovery.

Directions from Trinity:

Take Route 230 Direction Bonavista.  Drive into the community of Bonavista. You will reach an intersection with a large green highway sign indicating Elliston and Spillar’s Cove to your right.  Follow this.  Pass the water tower (keeping it to your right) after the water tower you and drive straight to get to the Spillar’s Cove end of the Klondike Trail and or turn right at the fork in the road (around a service station) to go to Elliston. Most of the Klondike trail is inland, so we suggest driving to the Spillar’s Cove end and exploring the northern section of the trail.

GPS: N48 38.28  W53 02.36

Additional Links

Trip Advisor reviews

Klondike Trail: The Hike Discovery Website and Trail Maps

 

ROUTE 235 – KING’S COVE – LIGHTHOUSE TRAIL

Multi-coloured cliffs jut into a blue ocean

Gentle – Moderate

1.7km inner loop, 3.5km outer loop

The Experience

The King’s Cove Lighthouse Trail is classed as a stacked loop.  This provides the walker/hiker the option of completing the 1.7km inside loop or the 3.5km outside loop.  Both trails are coastal to the lighthouse. The outside loop offers the hiker additional coastal viewing into Bonavista Bay and Brook Point then proceeds into the woods on a primitive trail leading back to the church.  While returning via the inside loop walkers/hikers have the opportunity to walk along rock foundations while admiring spectacular coastal scenery in Blackhead Bay.

The lighthouse was built in 1893, after some fifty shipwrecks occurred in Bonavista Bay.  It was constructed of pre-cast iron shipped from Birmingham, England.  It was the first lighthouse in Newfoundland to be fitted with a revolving kerosene light system from Sweden and visible from 14 nautical miles.  Since it had to be lit every night and extinguished each morning, Philip Batterton was hired as a light keeper, a position held for over 62 years by the Batterton family.

– This information has been provided by the Discovery Trail Tourism Association

Directions from Trinity

The trail is located at the halfway mark of Route 235.  One can drive away from Trinity in the direction of Clarenville on Route 230 and turn right onto Route 235 at South Bay, or one can drive in the direction of Bonavista and turn left onto Route 237 and take another left onto Route 235, driving as far as King’s Cove.  Either Route will take approximately 45 minutes. Turn into the community and park at the large church.  The trail begins there.

GPS: N48 34’12  W53 19’56

Additional Links

Lighthouse Trail: The Hike Discovery Website and Maps

Trip Advisor Reviews

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

For more information about hiking trails in the Eastern Region consider ordering the book Hikes of Eastern Newfoundland.

https://www.amazon.com/Hikes-Eastern-Newfoundland-Mary-Smyth/dp/1927099595

The photographs on this page are by Marieke Gow and may only be used on other websites or print material with written permission from Marieke. mariekegow@yahoo.com