Rainbow Haven Beach is one of HRM’s most popular beaches, and for good reason. A boardwalk takes you from the parking lot through the grassy dunes and onto the large sandy beach. The beach wraps around a small point at the entrance to Cole Harbour (the actual harbour, not the nearby community). Waves gently lap onto the shore, and seabirds soar overhead.
However, Rainbow Haven Beach isn’t exactly dog-friendly. You can read more about this on my blog post, but to me, the most dog-friendly beaches are the least crowded ones. We visited Rainbow Haven on a Wednesday evening, and there were still enough people around to make any off-leash time a bit of a struggle. We won’t be trying this one on a weekend.
That said, if you’re looking to go for a relaxing evening walk, be sure to give Rainbow Haven a try. It offers a large and beautiful park area.
How to Get There
Drive up Portland Street (which turns into Cole Harbour Road) From downtown Dartmouth, you’ll need to drive about 14 km (20 minutes). From the Circumferential Highway (Hwy 111), you’ll need to drive about 11 km (15 minutes). Then turn right onto Bissett Road. Drive to the end of Bissett Road (about 5.4 km), then turn left onto Cow Bay Road. The park entrance will be on your right.
You can also check out this map.