The East Coast Trail

The 540 km East Coast Trail is located on the east coast of Canada along the scenic shores of the Avalon Peninsula in the province of Newfoundland and Labrador. The trail has won many awards and accolades. In 2010 National Geographic ranked the Avalon Peninsula as “the No.1 coastal destination in the world”.

254 km of the Trail have now been hardened to a world class hiking standard. With the latest expansions, the Trail now runs 34 km north of Quidi Vidi Village in historic St. John’s north to Pouch Cove. To the south of St John’s, the completed part of the Trail stretches 220 km from Fort Amherst to Cappahayden on the beautiful southern shore, and is equipped with trail signage, maps and supporting trail information to enhance the hiking experience. This section south of St John’s consists of a series of 21 paths, each of which can be hiked as an individual experience, each having a northern and a southern trailhead in a small community, most of them with bed and breakfast accommodation. Some paths are easy strolls, and some are longer and more rugged. Use of ECTA maps is highly recommended for locating trailheads, learning about distances and understanding how we rate the individual paths.

The portion of the National Hiking Trail in Newfoundland begins (or terminates) at the most easterly place in North America, Cape Spear, just south of St John’s. It is hoped that eventually the Newfoundland section of the National Hiking Trail will cross the island. However, for the time being it follows the coastal East Coast Trail from Cape Spear to Ferryland, and from there takes the d’Iberville trail to Argentia, where a ferry connects to North Sydney, Nova Scotia. The d’Iberville trail is an unmarked wilderness trail that is only suitable for experienced backpackers, with way-finding, rough camping and wilderness survival skills.

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