Trails

Waterloo has over 150 km of off-road and multi-use trails. We have installed trail counters at several points along our trail network. We continue to build out our trail system according to the Transportation Master Plan.

Winter maintenance is covered on our snow removal page.

Trail profiles

Our most used trails are listed below. Some popular trails are not maintained by the city, such as the Hydrocut Trail or those running through Laurel Creek Conservation Area.

You can view trails and other active transportation features using our in-house city map or Google Maps.

Bechtel Park Trail

  • located at Bechtel Park
  • 3.2km of trails
  • groomed cross-country trails in the winter
  • close to Bechtel dog park
  • nearby parking

Forwell Trail

Hillside Trail

  • runs from Lexington Road to Hillside Park
  • 3 km of trails
  • partially paved
  • multi-use trail

GeoTime Trail

  • Geotime trail maptrail illustrates major geological events that have taken place through 18 interpretive signs along route
  • 4km of trails
  • showcases the Archean and Proterozoic eons as well as the Paleozoic, Mesozoic and Cenozoic eras throughout the earth's formation
  • each metre of 4 km trail marks one million years of geological time, every centimetre represents 10,000 years and every millimetre represents 100 years
  • features a sundial where you can learn how to tell time
  • trail highlights when biological organisms appeared and when major catastrophic events took place

Iron Horse Trail

  • runs between Erb Street West in Waterloo and Ottawa Street in Kitchener
  • 5.5 km of trails
  • connects Waterloo Park to Victoria Park
  • multi-use trail
  • fully paved
  • part of the Trans Canada Trail
  • historic route linking Waterloo and Kitchener on former railway corridor

Laurel Trail

  • runs from uptown Waterloo through University of Waterloo to Columbia Lake
  • 8 km of trail along the Laurel Creek
  • multi-use trail
  • partially paved

RIM Park Manulife Sportsplex Trails

  • runs throughout RIM Park Manulife Sportsplex
  • 7 km of looping trails
  • access to the Walter Bean Trail
  • multi-use trail
  • fully paved
  • nearby parking

Spurline Trail

  • connects north end of downtown Kitchener to uptown Waterloo
  • 2.5 km of trails
  • access to Trans Canada Trail and Iron Horse Trail
  • multi-use trail
  • fully paved
  • lit trail

The Great Trail (Trans-Canada Trail)

Runs along the Iron Horse Trail and part of the Laurel Trail to St. Jacobs Farmer Market

  • 7.5 km of trail
  • connects Kitchener, Waterloo and Township of Woolwich
  • multi-use trail
  • fully paved
  • parking points along trail

Uptown Loop

The UpTown Loop has three trails to choose from:

Lake walk (PDF) discover Waterloo Park, the jewel of the city with views of Silver Lake plus:

  • Waterloo's first school house
  • Grist Mill replica
  • Visitor & Heritage Information Centre
  • Perimeter Institute
  • Waterloo Memorial Recreation Complex
  • Canadian Clay and Glass Gallery
  • Park Inn concession
  • total walking time: 20 minutes
North walk (PDF) helps you discover everything uptown Waterloo has to offer:
  • Carnegie Library
  • shopping district
  • old post office
  • Huether Hotel
  • old train station
  • Waterloo Public Library
  • Albert Heritage Conservation District
  • total walking time: 30 minutes
South walk (PDF) discover old and new on this walk visiting historic and new districts of the uptown:
  • old Seagram Distillery
  • Waterloo Public Square
  • Brewmesiter Green
  • Adult Recreation Centre
  • Seagram buildings
  • total walking time: 20 minutes

View the complete walking guide for your convenience. 

Walter Bean Trail

Westside Trails

  • runs through the Forest Hills woodlot
  • 12 km of trails
  • access the trail through Laurelwood Drive
  • woodlot contains rare plants, migratory breeding birds and a variety of wildlife

Trail etiquette

To respect all user types, it is important to follow these basic rules:

  • share the trail and always announce your intent to pass 
  • only use marked trails and follow the signs
  • stop for traffic where trails cross streets
  • stay on trails to avoid damaging nearby vegetation or creek banks
  • leave plants and small creatures in their natural habitats
  • use waste bins or carry your litter home
  • respect the privacy of people living adjacent to trails
  • keep your pet on a leash and pick up after your dog 

Your co-operation will help protect our trails and improve everyone's experience.