French Beach Hiking Trail

Panoramic view of French Beach.

Panoramic view of French Beach.

The hike to French Beach opens onto a long, quiet pebble beach surrounded by rocks.  The beach overlooks Durrell’s Arm with Durrell Museum looking back at you from the across the ocean.

Take Twillingate’s Main Street in the direction of Durrell and eventually the road stops at the trail that leads to French Beach and French Head (a bit more than 5 kms from the T-intersection of Route 340 and Main Street).  Four-wheel-drive vehicles can continue on the trail, closer to the beach.  However, there are a few parking spots at the entrance to the trail.

Sign pointing to Cobra Rock

Sign pointing to Cobra Rock

The walk to the beach is about 15 – 20 minutes.  From there the trail continues to French Head and over the Spillar’s (also spelled Spiller’s) Cove beach and Codjack’s Cove if you’re interested in a longer coastal hike. (See hiking map)

In summer wild flowers such as buttercups, irises, chickweed, crackerberries and fireweed create endless carpets of colour along the trail.

Keith and Heather Nicol in conjunction with the Central Newfoundland Destination Marketing Organization, created these informative short videos showing the trails that lead from French Beach to Spiller’s Cove and on to Codjack’s Cove.



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Top of Twillingate Hike

Entrance to Top of Twillingate

Entrance to Top of Twillingate Hike

The hike to the Top of Twillingate delivers the most rewarding views along the way and at the end of this 40 minute hike to the final lookout point.

In total between an hour to hour and a half, this easy to moderate hike follows along a wooded trail with 3 lookout stations before reaching the peak of Twillingate island at 327 ft above sea level, with its 18 ft lookout tower.

This hike starts in the community called Bayview, previously known as Gillard’s Cove. To get to the starting point, drive as if leaving Twillingate onto Route 340. Take the first exit to the right, called Rink Road. Stay on this road until you see the sign at the start of the trail on your right.  There is parking at the start of the hike.

A Hiker Enjoys the View from Lookout 1 on Top of Twillingate trail.

A Hiker Enjoys the View from Lookout 1 on Top of Twillingate trail.

It is a dry trail with some uphill areas and a few hand rails and stretches of board walk to help out. An option is to do the additional loop to the trail on a board walk around Low Mist Pond.

The trail is marked very well and there are washroom facilities at the start of the trail near the trail cabin. In summer a canteen operates at the trail cabin, staffed by students. The area has a few picnic tables and along the trail there is bench seating.

Don’t forget to sign the guest book that is kept at the lookout tower at the peak of the trail.  And why not end the trail off back in Twillingate with fresh fish and chips at JJ’s Fish Market on the deck?

Things to bring:

  • Day pack
  • Water
  • Protection against black flies
  • A hat
  • A camera

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