The Halifax region has a number of great recreational trails.
Atlantic View Trail
Atlantic View Trail Association
The old rail bridges lead across a large salt marsh and tidal estuary, where you can view the sand dunes between Lawrencetown Beach and the tidal pond.
Beechville-Lakeside-Timberlea Rails to Trails (the "BLT Trail")
This mixed-use trail follows several streams and winds through a "Granite Uplands" ecosystem, with a mixed second-generation forest, along lake shores and past inland bogs providing access to the narrow lake. Vegetation is tolerant of poor drainage, and includes black spruce and larch, while drier areas are home to spruce, hemlock, and pine ecosystem. There is an amethyst vein in the granite at Six Miles Falls. The trail is popular with pedestrians, cyclists, skiers, ATVs, and snowmobiles.
Bissett Road Trail
Cole Harbour Parks and Trails Association
This unmaintained trail (use at own risk!) connects to coastal lands behind the Eastern Shore Beaches, which includes a waterfall, streams, and patches of wild roses. Railway builders cut through solid rock, exposing quartzite along the trail, with lichens growing on the bare rock, preparing the environment for other plants.
Blueberry Run Trail
This mixed-use trail through the Eastern Shore glacial drumlins passes through coastal spruce forest and cattail marshes, with some ocean views. At Seaforth, the trail runs 15 metres from the pounding surf. Some sections of trail are still being built or improved.
Dollar Lake Provincial Park
Middle Musquodoboit DNR
The park has a glacial drumlin field in the north, while the southern section has black and red spruce forests and folded bedrock of the Quartzite Barrens. The sandy beach at the head of the lake (the deepest in the Halifax regional municipality) nestles between quartzite outcrops.
Fort Sackville Walkway
Sackville River Association
The trail runs along a fast-moving river, with rapids and salmon pools, in the Quartzite Barrens with a view of Bedford Basin at the mouth of the river. The river has beaver and muskrat, salmon and trout.
Lake Charles Trail
Canoe To The Sea Society
Lake Charles is part of a chain of lakes in the Quartzite Barrens and the trail passes along the edge of the lake, through a century old second-generation white pine forest. The northern part of the narrow and hilly 1.5 km trail is the original cart path used by early settlers to travel to Waverley. The 1850s Shubenacadie Canal was designed and built to bypass this awkward transportation route.
Laurie Provincial Park
The short trail leads through tall pines to a point of land with a view of the lake with deciduous trees edge.
Little Sackville River Greenway
Sackville Rivers Association
The trail passes through glacial drumlins with lots of wildflowers, mixed woods of spruce and fir, with a short side trail to a mature stand of pine and hemlock.
McCurdy Woodlot Trails
Several trails through woodlot, and open fields. The Acadian forest mixes southern and boreal species. The 1 km Titus Smith Trial is an easy walk & is wheelchair accessible, providing 17 stations highlighting forest management operations, tree species and other vegetation. The 0.5 km Wildlife Trail has 11 stops highlighting different animal species and their habitats. The 1.5 km Tree Identification Trail has 11 stops showing 30 native trees. Other trails here include the Saunders Trail, Hardwood Trail, Fern and Moss Trail, McCurdy Trail and Alex's Path. Beside the flag pole at the entrance to the Complex is a viewpoint overlooing the Carboniferous Lowlands to the north.
Moser River Interpretive Trail
The trails through spruce, fir, and maple provide access to an Atlantic tidal estuary and marsh and the end of the trail overlooks Necum Teuch Harbour. Shorebirds here include plovers, killdeer, yellowlegs, and sandpipers, while Ruffed Grouse, partridge and many species of songbirds are found in the forest. Seals are visible close to shore in the winter and in the Moosehead Beach area year-round. You might even see deer along the trail.
Musquodoboit Trail System
Musquodoboit Trailways Association
The Musquodoboit Trail covers 41 kilometres of signed and groomed trail including the “Trailway” is a 15 km section of an abandoned rail corridor that is now a part of the TransCanada Trail. It is popular for walking, biking and winter cross-country skiing. The Gibraltar Rock and Bayer Lake loop trails add two short and easily accessible back-country trails conveniently located near the north and south ends of the Trailway. The first offers spectacular views of the Musquodoboit River Valley and the granite uplands beyond while the second provides excellent views of Bayer Lake and some River Valley vistas. The Admiral Lake Loop trail, a moderate length trail, provides outstanding views of interior lakes and south to the Atlantic ocean. Lastly there are the challenging Wilderness Trails that wind along the edge of the unusually rugged granite ridge and knob topography that characterizes the White Lake Wilderness Area. As they meander up hills, and into mossy forests the trails offer dramatic scenery ranging from old forest to spectacular high-rock look offs over the Musquodoboit River Valley. Oakfield Provincial Park
Waverley DNR office
The park is on a once-farmed drumlin with large open fields with some woods which have 200-year-old beech and hemlock, some red oak, and new growths of birch, red maple and beech. Three trails form a 5 km loop. An old cart road runs under a canopy of 200-year-old beech and hemlock. The iron bridge over the rail track provides a good view down the length of Shubenacadie Grand Lake.
Old Annapolis Road Hiking Trail
Open year-round, but may be closed due to fire conditions or for forestry operations. The trail passes through inland forest with red spruce, fir, and maple, winding around spring-fed Island Lake, which has a sandy beach at the point where the brook leaves the lake. The trail has woodpeckers, beavers and a variety of plant life.
Pennant Point Trail
This headland on the Chebucto Peninsula is shrouded in fog in late spring and summer. There was a forest fire here in the early 1980s, and the trail winds through the regrowing forest. At the end of the Point, you can see seals basking on the bare rocks offshore, and the shallow shoals leading out to Sambro Island.
Polly Cove Trail
This trail winds through the coastal barrens & rocky coast of the Peggy's Cove Preservation Area. You pass through heath shrubs, bogs, and spruce forest. Shrubs include crowberry, junipers, alder, bayberry, kalmia, huckleberry and withrod. Seals are commonly seen feeding in Polly Cove around the small islands.
Be cautious as the trail tends to be wet & slippery.
Salmon River Trail
This un-maintained trail (with special caution during the busy hunting season!) passes through a river gorge connecting the linear lakes systems and high barren outcrops of the Granite Ridge. There's a side trail with a viewpoint overlooking the river valley. Along the tail, see a forest of spruce, hemlock, some old growth hemlock, and pine, as well as ruffed grouse, porcupine, deer and red-tailed hawks.
Salt Marsh Trail
Cole Harbour Parks and Trails Association
The trail, typically cool & windy, crosses a wide tidal marsh and wildlife area which are sy. Halfway across the causeway, look back to see the shape of the harbour surrounded by glacial drumlins. The marsh changes drastically between tides, and has been home to 137 different bird species, including Great Blue Heron, one of the largest wading birds in North America, before they head south to winter in Central America.