|Margam Country Park||3 miles (5 km)|| This large country park includes the magnificent Margam Castle, an 18th Century Orangery with ornamental gardens and a Deer Park, all set within 1000 acres of beautiful countryside. |
The park is excellent for cycling with miles of tarmac roads and rough tracks. A section of the National Cycle Network known as the Celtic Trail Route 4 runs through the northern end of the park. The only place that you are not allowed to cycle is the Orangery Gardens.
There is also a splendid, 5 mile mountain Bike Trail. It is waymarked with yellow markers and takes place on tracks, paths and rough ground. The Margam Activity Centre offers guided rides for families.
Margam is also great for walking with several different colour coded waymarked trails taking you to the different sections of the park. View Full Details>>
|Caerphilly Mountain||1 miles (1 km)||Enjoy a climb to the summit of Caerphilly Mountain and a walk across Caerphilly Common on this circular route in South Wales.|
You can park at the Caerphilly Mountain Snack Bar car park on Mountain Road to start your walk. From here you can pick up the tracks to take you to the 271 metres (889 ft) summit where there are fabulous views over the town and Caerphilly Castle. There are a few different paths to choose from. Most of them are good wide trails though they can get muddy in winter. After your walk you can enjoy refreshments at the snack bar.
The Taff Ely Ridgeway Walk passes the common so you can pick up this long distance trail to continue your walk. The waymarked trail starts on the common and will take you to Garth Hill, the Ely Valley and the Taff Vale.
The Glamorgan Ridgeway Walk also passes the mountain. It's a long distance ridge top walk which takes you to Llantrisant forest and Margam Country Park.
The splendid 13th century Caerphilly Castle also has some nice footpaths around the its network of moats and dams. View Full Details>>
|Nash Point||4 miles (6.5 km)||This coastal circular walk in the Vale of Glamorgan visits Nash Point Lighthouse on the Monknash Coast. The stretch of coast is popular with hikers with cliff top views, nice beaches and a visit to the Grade II listed lighthouse, which dates from 1831-32. |
You can park at the Nash Point car park, just south of Marcross. From here it is a short walk to the coastal path and the lighthouse. You follow the path east to St Donat's Point, with nice views of St Donat's Bay, Tresilian Bay and the Bristol Channel. The route then heads inland, towards the medieval castle of St Donat's. After rounding the castle, you follow public footpaths through the countryside towards Marcross where you pick up the Marcross Brook to take you back to the car park.
You can extend the walk by heading east towards Llantwit Major beach. View Full Details>>
|Afan Forest Park Country Park||11 miles (17 km)||Set in the beautiful Afan Valley in Neath Port Talbot, this 48-square-mile forest park has miles of cycling trails, walking trails and several fantastic mountain bike trails.|
For a nice easy cycle the Rheilffordd Trail is a great option. It takes you along the River Afan on a disused railway path.
For mountain bikers there are several well laid out trails. The Penhydd Trail is a 22km loop voted as the trail to ride before you die by What Mountain Bike Magazine in 2004. The 46km Skyline Trail has stunning skyline views of the Brecon Beacons, the Preselis, the Black Mountains and the South Wales coast.
Walkers will find 14 waymarked circular trails taking you along the River Afan, through the peaceful woodland and up to the Ridgetops where there are fabulous views to enjoy.
If you have time you could continue your outing by heading a couple of miles north east to the nearby Glyncorrwg Ponds where you will find lovely waterside walking and cycling trails. View Full Details>>
|Merthyr Mawr Sand Dunes Walk||2 miles (3.1 km)||This walk visits the lovely Merthyr Mawr Warren National Nature Reserve on the South Wales coast. The reserve includes miles of wonderful sand dunes including the 'Big Dipper', the highest dune in Wales. There's also some areas of woodland, saltmarsh, grassland with great coastal views to enjoy from the high points.|
The walk starts from the car park at Candleston Castle just a few miles south west of Bridgend. The ruined 14th-century castle sits right on the edge of the reserve. Wildfowl, butterflies, moths, autumn gentian, violets and orchids can be seen in the area around the castle.
From the Candleston car park you can pick up several waymarked trails of varying length. Highlights on the routes include views of the River Ogmore and a visit to the unusual limestone spring at Burrows Well. The 'Big Dipper Walk' will take you to the top of the huge dune. It's quite a challenging climb but when you get to the top there's splendid views over the reserve and the coast.
The area is great for flora and fauna with wildflowers attracting lots of butterflies including grizzled skippers, dark green fritillaries and small blues. Repltiles seen on the Warren include adders, common lizards, grass snakes and slow worms. View Full Details>>
|Garth Hill||4 miles (6 km)||This challenging walk takes you to the summit of Garth Hill near Cardiff. The hill is thought to be the inspiration for the fictional hill featured in the film 'The Englishman Who Went Up a Hill But Came Down a Mountain' starring Hugh Grant. |
The walk begins in the village of Taff's Well and follows the Taff Ely Ridgeway Walk to the 307 m (1,007 ft) summit. Here you can enjoy fantastic views of Cardiff, the Bristol Channel and the Taff Valley. You will also find a number of burial sites dating from the early to middle Bronze Age, around 2000 BC. You descend on country lanes, crossing the River Taff and finishing back in Taff's Well.
To extend your walking in the area just head a mile to the east and visit Castle Coch and Fforest Fawr. View Full Details>>
|Church College and Lighthouse walk||9 miles (14 km)||A walk along the Glamorgan Heritage Coastline. View Full Details>>|
|Porthkerry Country Park||4 miles (6.5 km)||Explore 220 acres of woodland, meadows and coast in this super country park near Barry in the Vale of Glamorgan. The route starts at the car park on the coast and takes you along the pretty pebble beach before turning inland into the woodland on nature trails. You will pass through the pretty grassland with its wildflower meadow and calming stream. You will also pass Viaduct wood with super views of the impressive Porthkerry Viaduct. The route below is designed for walkers but a nice easy cycle track runs through the centre of the park just up from the coast. It makes for a nice, safe ride for families.|
Facilities in the park include an excellent cafe, chidlren's play area and a 12 hole golf course. View Full Details>>
|Glamorgan Ridgeway Walk||33 miles (53 km)||Follow the Glamorgan Ridgeway from Margam Country Park, near Port Talbot, through beautiful upland and valley scenery, to Caerphilly Castle. There are fabulous panoramic views of the Brecon Beacons to the north, the Bristol Channel and Devon and Somerset to the south.|
The walk begins at the splendid Margam Country Park (video below). The attraction includes the magnificent Margam Castle, an 18th Century Orangery with ornamental gardens and the Deer Park, all set within 1000 acres of beautiful countryside. From Margam you begin by heading east to Bettws and Blackmill. You then pass through Llantrisant forest, Llantrisant, Garth Hill and Caerphilly Common. From Garth Hill there are fine views of Cardiff and the Taff valley. It is thought to be the inspiration for 'Ffynnon Garw', the fictional mountain (or hill) featured in the book, and film, The Englishman Who Went Up a Hill But Came Down a Mountain. The walk also passes near to Taff's Well - the only thermal spring in Wales located in Taff's Well park. You also climb Caerphilly Mountain with more tremendous views to enjoy as shown in the latter part of the video below. The final section descends into Caerphilly, finishing near the castle. View Full Details>>
|Bridgend Circular Walk||20 miles (32 km)||Starting at Ogmore Castle on the River Ogwr, follow this relativley flat route around the town of Bridgend. View Full Details>>|
|Porthcawl Coastal Walk||6 miles (9.7 km)||A walk from Porthcawl to Ogmore along a lovely section of the Wales Coast Path. Along the way you'll pass pretty beaches and enjoy views of the River Ogmore as you approach the end of the route. There's also a visit to the splendid Merthyr Mawr Sand Dunes and Ogmore Castle.|
The walk starts by Porthcawl Harbour and follows the path north and then east past Sandy Bay where there's the Coney Beach fairground and a large sheltered, sandy beach.
You continue past Trecco Bay to Newton Burrows and the noteworthy Merthyr Mawr National Nature Reserve. The reserve includes miles of wonderful sand dunes including the 'Big Dipper', the highest dune in Wales. You can take a detour from the path to explore the dunes with its diverse range of flora and fauna.
The path then takes you to the Ogmore Estuary at the eastern end of the Traeth yr Afon beach. It's a good place to look out for wading birds such as Redshank and Shelduck. The route heads along the river and then through the sand dunes and woodland of Merthyr Mawr, passing the interesting ruins of the 14th century Candleston Castle on the way.
The final section crosses the Ogmore River and the Ewenny River before finishing in the village of Ogmore. Here you can pay a visit to the Grade I listed Ogmore Castle. The 12th century castle is located in a photogenic position on the south bank of the River Ewenny and the east bank of the River Ogmore. The grounds are also very attractive with sea views and a popular set of stepping stones across the river. View Full Details>>
|Kenfig Nature Reserve||3 miles (5.2 km)||A lovely coastal walk around this national nature reserve near Porthcawl, Bridgend. The site includes expansive sand dunes and the Kenfig Pool, Glamorgan's largest lake. It's a great place for wildlife with many water loving birds visiting the lake. Look out for Golden Plovers, Tufted Duck and Gadwalls from the bird hides positioned around the water.|
The handy visitor centre has lots of information on the flora and fauna you can expect to see on your walk. This includes pretty wildflowers such as Pyramidal Orchid and Early Marsh-orchid.
The walk starts at the car park and visitor centre. From here you can pick up sandy paths taking you past the pool to Kenfig Sands by the sea. There's great views across Swansea Bay, the Gower, Margam Sands and down to Port Talbot's industrial area.
More trails then take you from the beach across Kenfig Burrows, returning to the pool and the car park. View Full Details>>
|Valeways Millennium Heritage Trail||65 miles (105 km)||This is a circular walk through the Vale of Glamorgan which includes a splendid coastal section along the Glamorgan Heritage Coast. The route runs through Peterston-super-Ely, Barry, Cowbridge, Llantwit Major, St Brides Major and Llanharry, Ewenny Priory and St. Fagans. The route includes a waterside section along the River Ely as you pass the through the beautiful Ely Valley. You will also pass through the lovely Porthkerry Country Park near Barry, while also visiting the historic castles at Boverton and St Donat's.|
The walk is waymarked with a yellow and white disc. View Full Details>>
|Coed Morgannwg Way||36 miles (58 km)||This walk runs from Merthyr Tydfil to Margam, through the four forests of Coed Morgannwg, the Cynon Valley and the Dare Valley. The walk starts at the Gethin Woodland Park in Merthyr Tydfil and heads west to Aberdare and the lovely Dare Valley Country Park with 500 acres of woodlands, pasture and moorland mountainside. You continue west passing Lluest Wen Reservoir before ascending Craig y Llyn mountain - the highest point in Glamorgan and in the South Wales Valleys. The views are wonderful with the lakes Llyn Fawr and Llyn Fawr at the base of the mountain. The route the descends through more woodland to Abercregan and then across the River Avan to the Afan Argoed Country Park. The final section takes you past Bryn and Mynydd Margam to the finish point at the splendid Margam Country Park. The attraction includes the magnificent Margam Castle, an 18th Century Orangery with ornamental gardens and the Deer Park, all set within 1000 acres of beautiful countryside. |
The walk is waymarked with a white footprint logo. View Full Details>>