The town owes its name to Tudful, the daughter of Brychan, Chieftain of Brycheiniog, who died whilst praying as pagans battled to take over the town. Subsequently canonized, the site on which she was slain became known as Martyr Tudful, or Merthyr Tydfil.
The beautiful and dramatic countryside around Merthyr Tydfil is the perfect setting for a wide range of activities and attractions. Days out for all the family can be spent in the local forests, nature reserves and hills.
Merthyr Tydfil boasts a variety of local heritage trails which highlight the Town's historic sites and places of interest. These range in length and terrain to suit all needs and abilities.
Nearby Cyfarthfa Castle, home to the Crawshay mining dynasty, not only houses one of the finest museums outside Cardiff but it is set in the beautiful gardens of Cyfarthfa Park. Morlais Castle is also close by, whilst the mining cottage belonging to poet Joseph Parry is in the heart of the town centre.
Being so close to the Brecon Beacons it is no surprise many people come to Merthyr to enjoy and explore the wonderful scenery. Garwnant Park boasts over 400 acres of picturesque hills and forests and is home to several adventure activity companies, whilst Taf Fechan Forest and Taf Bargoed are the equal of nearby Fforest Fawr Geopark.
Walkers and cyclists will find a great choice of both challenging and gentle routes including the long distance Taff Trail, which links the capital city of Cardiff to the historic market town of Brecon in the heart of the Brecon Beacons National Park.
Merthyr Tydfil has a railway station, the terminus of a branch with trains to/from Cardiff Central.