Walking Routes from Llanwrtyd 

ST DAVID'S ROUTE DESCRIPTION

Leave the town on Victoria Road (next to St. James Church) in north-west direction. After about 400 metres turn right down a small lane. You will pass an R.S.P.B bird hide on your left. For many years the Red Kites were fed here between October and Easter in the field to your right, and you may well still view a Kite during this walk. Follow the track through the gates and follow the river for about ½ km. Follow the path across the field to Victoria Wells, opened in 1897. The former wells are not now in use,
Follow a track parallel to the river, across a cattle grid, down a metalled road to a gate. Follow the path through the field and gates until you arrive at a small lane (please ensure that you close all gates through these fields). Turn right and cross a bridge. You will see the ruins of an old flour mill on your right.

 

Carry on to old Llanwrtyd and visit St. David’s Church. A church has existed on this site for about 1400 years. Inside you will see a Celtic Cross and a statue of St. David carved in wood. Here, both the Reverend Theophilus Evans and the Reverend William Williams of ‘Pant-yr-Celyn’ preached as vicar and curate respectively.
 

Turn left at the church up a steep hill and pass Dinas farm on your left. Keep straight on at the track junction through the gate and after 400 metres you will enter a forest clearing. Go through the gate and after 100 metres turn right through a gate into a field. Climb the path at the edge of the field for 400 metres, Go through the gate and turn immediately left and follow the fence line for about 1½ km, keeping Cwm Henog farm below you on your left. At the end of this track go through the gate and turn right up the hill. Enter the forest at 50 metres and follow the track upwards through trees for about 1½ km. Near the top of the hill, the path reaches a wide forestry road. Turn left along the road and at the next junction take the branch to the right. Follow the forestry road to the T junction and turn left, which will take you gently downhill for the next 3km with some magnificent views on your right overlooking the Irfon Valley.
 

Eventually you will come to a forestry gate and after 100 metres turn right along the road with the Irfon River on your left. Pass the forestry picnic site on your left and after 1½ km turn left at Pen-y-bont Farm. Cross the bridge and turn right through the farm yard passing two gates. Turn immediately left as you enter the field and walk uphill with the farm on your left to a gate at 150 metres. Through the gate turn immediately right along a small path through the trees for about 1km. Cross fence where indicated by signs and across two small streams to the corner of field. Follow the path that drops gently downhill, turn left at the track at the bottom of the hill and follow the farm track for 3km with the Irfon River on your right.
 

Eventually you will reach the Abergwesyn Road, straight on for ½ km and take the small track straight on by the side of the river. You will enter the Dol-y-Coed Park. As you walk across the park you will see a dome shaped building at the rear of the pump house. Here the sulphur spring was hermetically sealed in a massive marble and mosaic circular pedestal covered with a disc of plate glass. The springs were first discovered by Theophilus Evans who claimed to have discovered the healing properties of “Ffynon Droellwyd” (the Stinking Well) when suffering from scurvy. You will pass by the former Dol-y-Coed Hotel which was once the centre of leisure including an 18 hole golf course, tennis courts and bowling greens. Go straight through the park and follow the road back to Llanwrtyd Wells.

TOWN WALK 

Leave the town by the Dol-y-Coed Road to the West until you come to the Stonecroft Inn. Turn left across the car park and follow the path behind the inn to cross the river footbridge. Follow the road alongside the river, leaving town and then taking the right fork in the wooded area. Follow this lane to Dolgoy House, observing the RSPB bird hide on your left. Llanwrtyd was one of the first Red Kite feeding stations, operating daily through the winter from around 1990 until 2005, when the local butcher retired and the source of meat scraps ceased. Pass through the grounds of Dolgoy house and barns and follow the path alongside the river until it rises and crosses the field diagonally to reach Victoria Wells (Q1). Turn right along the road to the end, then carry on across the fields to the forestry road where you turn right to Dinas Mill and old Llanwrtyd, to visit St. David’s Church.

 

DINAS MILL — Dinas translates as ‘city’ or ‘citadel’ and refers to the conical shape of the hill Pen-y-Ddinas

 

ST. DAVID’S CHURCH — The Celtic Cross inside the church suggests that a church has existed on this site for 1,440 years. Here, both the Reverend Theophilus Evans and the Reverend William Williams of ‘Pant-yr-Celyn’ preached as vicar and curate respectively. In the graveyard can be found the graves of many famous Welshmen including John Thomas, the Welsh composer, the Reverend J. R. Kilsby-Jones and Percy Lloyd.

Cross the road bridge and follow the road back towards Llanwrtyd Wells until you see a footbridge across the river. Here leave the road, go past the footbridge and through the iron gate straight ahead. Follow the river to the former Dol-y-Coed Hotel. As you walk through the park you will see a group of buildings on the left. These were the original pump house and bathing house when the town was in its heyday as a Victorian spa resort. Here the pure sulphur spring was hermetically sealed in a massive marble and mosaic circular pedestal covered with a disc of plate glass.

 

DOL-Y-COED HOTEL —The springs here were first discovered in 1732 by Theophilus Evans, who claimed to have discovered the healing properties of ‘Ffynon Droellwyd’ (The Stinking Well) when suffering from scurvy. The hotel itself was once the centre of leisure including tennis courts and bowling greens in the Dol-y-Coed Park by the River Irfon (Q.2).

 

Turn right along the road back to Llanwrtyd Wells town centre. Cross the main road and go up the road opposite, following the signs for the railway station. Carry on past the station, following the road as far as the entrance to the Abernant Lake Hotel on your right, now operated as an outward bound centre for schoolchildren. (Q.3) At this point you can choose to follow the shorter or the extended route. For the short route turn left opposite the Adventure Centre entrance up the overgrown short lane, and at the end turn left again, following the road all the way back to the main road, turning left to arrive back at the town square.

 

To follow the additional loop carry straight on past the Adventure Centre entrance to the road junction and turn right. After about 200mtr there is a gate on the right hand side as the road curves to the left. Follow the path over the railway and across the fields to the track by Glan Irfon Farm. Go left along the track but skirt round to the right of the houses in the courtyard, picking up the path on the other side heading north until it reaches a track. Carry on up the track and across the railway until it reaches the road. Turn left and and follow the road back into town, going straight ahead at the point at which you joined it earlier. When you reach the main road turn left to arrive back in the town square.

 

Leave Llanwrtyd Square in a southerly direction and take the second turning right, along Victoria road, past St. James’ Church. Continue along the road as far as the Victoria Wells Holiday Centre, then beyond the cattle grid and bear left up between the buildings. This was the site of the second Spa wells to be founded in Llanwrtyd and was opened on the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Victoria in 1897, hence the name.

Continue following the path up through the trees to a gate, before climbing to meet an unmetalled forestry road. A diversion can be made here to Spion Kop, a view point high on the hillside overlooking Llanwrtyd, constructed to commemorate the relief of Ladysmith and the battles of the Boer War. There was once a shelter here but its site and path constructed to meet it remain today. From the lane the path zigzags up until you reach the clearing where the hut used to be. A marvelous view can be enjoyed from here. Descend the same path and turn right along the lane at the bottom.

If you have not followed this diversion, turn left on reaching the lane above Victoria Wells and follow the track uphill until it becomes a metalled road. Until 1814, this was part of the main road from the Old Llanwrtyd Church, to the Roman road on Cefn Llwydlo and Llandovery. Continue along this road until you reach the main road. Turn left then right almost immediately, over the railway crossing and follow a small lane uphill for about 1km to Brynhynog farm.

 

From here, bear slightly right in the farmyard and follow a farm track. Take the left fork in the track after about 200m, leading uphill through two more gates for approximately 500m to a gate into Crychan Forest. The path continues to rise through the trees, crossing straight over a forest road before reaching the highest point (around 300m) and joining an old unsurfaced county road. This road follows part of a Roman road which ran from Moridunum (Carmarthen) to Viriconium (Wroxeter) in Shropshire. Turn left onto this road and follow it downhill for about ¾ km until it merges with a forest road. Follow this for another 1½ km until you meet the main road, where there is a picnic table.

Bear left onto the road and follow it. After about 2 km turn left into a lane and then through a gate. Follow a faint track down through the field to the next gate, then continue down the field edge and into the next field, before bearing off to the left to reach a gate out onto a track by the Cledan brook. Turn right, cross the stream, and follow the road until it reaches the main (Cefn Gorwydd) road. Here, turn left and follow it back to Llanwrtyd Wells.

VICTORIA WELLS

St David's - 20kms - 12.5 miles

Start and finish Neuadd Arms Hotel

GR: SN 879467

OS Map 147

© Crown Copyright and Database Rights November 2021 OS Licence 100064957 

St David's.jpg

St David's Walk

Distance 4 miles, 6.4.k

Start and finish Neuadd Arms Hotel

Town walk with extension.jpg

Distance 8.5 miles, 13.75k

Start and finish Neuadd Arms Hotel

Victoria Wells with extension.jpg

Distance 8 miles, 13 k

Start and Finish Neuadd Arms Hotel

 
 

VOLCANOES AND VALLEYS

 

Leave the town on the main road heading NE towards Builth Wells, as far as the Cambrian Woollen Mill. Pass the front of the Mill, over the footbridge to the car park, turn immediately left to the corner and follow the bridleway up behind the houses and through the gate.

 

Follow the track up the hill and into the forested section, carry straight on along the sometimes very muddy track, emerging eventually onto a farm track leading onwards up the hill. Continue up the hill, passing the derelict farm on your left, to the gate where you will see the Parish Boundary stone marking the end of Llanwrtyd Parish (Q.1). Continue through the gate and along the track to Pistyll Gwyn farm, passing straight through the farmyard and onto the tarmac lane. Follow the lane as far as the next farm, Bwlch Mawr (Q.2), at which point you turn left through the farmyard and follow the track up the hill. Keep straight on up the hill through two more gates, ignoring the branch to the right, and as you reach the top of the hill you will see a small gate in the corner of the field leading into the forestry.

 

Go through this gate and after 50 metres you reach a forestry road. Turn left and follow the road to a T junction, where you turn right and follow the road all the way down to the bottom of the Cerdyn valley. Again you reach a T junction, this time turning left and continuing down to the gate and cattle grid where you leave the forestry. At this point you will notice an information board illustrating the volcanic origins of the local hills (Q.3).

 

Continue to follow the track down the Cerdyn valley until you reach the next cattle grid. Immediately before the cattle grid take the steep path to the right, going straight up the hillside to the top of the bank , where the path (sometimes no more than a sheep track) levels out and follows the line of the wall/hedge through the fields along the hillside to another small gate.

 

Through this gate you cross a stream onto a farm track, turning right to continue along the contour through a couple of gates until you reach a house. Pass straight through the grounds of the house and continue along the tree-lined track through one gate and then turning left through the next, where the track leads you down to an open field.

 

Turn immediately right and follow the top edge of the field to the next gate, and through this carry straight ahead across the next field until you see the derelict house to your left. After picking up the track to the left of the house you will notice a small enclosure of railings on your left, and will be able to hear the sound of running water from within them. This is the spring which used to supply the towns water until relatively recently. 

 

Continue down the track to the next gate, and once through it bear to the left up the steep slope and through the next gate. Follow the track down past the farmyard, and continue to follow the hedge line beyond it (not the more obvious track to the left). At the bottom corner of the field pass through the gate and follow the track down the hill, through another gate and across the last field to the gate at the bottom.

Go through the gate and you will find yourself back in the town at the top of Zion Street, which then leads directly down to the town square.

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Round the Garn.jpg

Distance 5 miles

Start and Finish Neuadd Arms Hotel

ROUND THE GARN

 

Leave the town by the Dol-y-Coed Road to the west until you come to the ex-Dol-y-Coed Hotel.

 

DOL-Y-COED HOTEL — The springs here were first discovered in 1732 by Theophilus Evans, who claimed to have discovered the healing properties of ‘Ffynon Droellwyd’ (The Stinking Well) when suffering from scurvy. The hotel itself was once the centre of leisure including tennis courts and bowling greens in the Dol-y-Coed Park by the River Irfon. As you walk across the park you will pass a domed shaped building at the rear of the pump house. Here the pure sulphur spring was hermetically sealed in a massive marble and mosaic circular pedestal covered with a disc of plate glass.
Follow the river path for about three quarters of a mile, pass through the iron gate and cross the bridge. Turn immediately right then left, following path up to .the houses. Go through the gate and cross the field to Dinas Mill and old Llanwrtyd, to visit St. David’s Church.

 

DINAS MILL — Dinas translates as ‘city’ or ‘citadel’ and refers to the conical shape of the hill Pen-y-Ddinas

 

ST. DAVID’S CHURCH — The Celtic Cross inside the church suggests that a church has existed on this site for 1,440 years. Here, both the Reverend Theophilus Evans and the Reverend William Williams of ‘Pant-yr-Celyn’ preached as vicar and curate respectively. In the graveyard can be found the graves of many famous Welshmen including John Thomas. the Welsh composer, the Reverend J. R. Kilsby-Jones and Percy Lloyd.

Cross the road bridge and follow the road back towards Llanwrtyd Wells but take the turning on the left which doubles back.
Follow the road past Kilsby on the right. This house was named after its one-time owner James Rhys Jones (‘Kilsby’), writer and poet. Continue uphill and take the right fork along the stony track. On the left is Pen-y-Banc. This house was owned by the family of Sir Daniel Davies who worked with Aneurin Bevan to found the Health Service. The ruined farm buildings nearby were once a cottage, the birthplace of a local poet David Williams (‘Dafydd ap Gwilym o Fuellt’). Follow the trackway over the hill and through the forestry gate, descending along the forestry track to the junction.

 

If you are not taking the detour then DO NOT descend the path from the road however, but turn right. After a short distance this forestry road joins another. 

Turn right again across a cattle grid and descend the valley to the main A483 road at Maes-y-Gwaelod, where in the eighteenth century a school was held and many Dissenters met. A short distance to the left is the Cambrian Woolen Mill with its visitor centre and café. Turn right and follow the main road back to Llanwrtyd Wells.