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Mountain or Hill:Cambrian Mountains | Abergwesyn Common

Mountain or Hill, free entry

Nr Llanwrtyd Wells,



Abergwesyn Commons, on the southern edge of the Mid Wales Cambrian Mountains, is a wild and ancient landscape with far-reaching views. The commons stretch for 12 miles between the Nant Irfon valley in the west and Llanwrthwl in the east. Drygarn Fawr is the highest point on the commons, lying above the Nant Irfon valley and from the summit it's possible to walk eastwards along the entire ridge almost on the level.

People have lived and worked in the uplands for at least 9,000 years and unlike lowland sites, upland sites have never been ploughed or disturbed by recent activity. Abergwesyn has around

This means Abergwesyn Commons has a wealth of archaeological remains including around 14 Bronze Age cairns and 459 sites classed as post-medieval. There are shelters, quarries, route ways and clearance cairns. The most impressive of these is at Drygarn Fawr, right on the summit of Abergwesyn and is well worth a visit.

From Llanwrtyd Wells, drive or cycle westwards up the steep Devil’s Staircase to cross Abergwesyn Pass where you can access Abergwesyn Common.

The commons are rich in archaeology, from Bronze Age ritual sites to deserted medieval villages. Wherever you walk you're likely to come across a cairn - a stone circle - or standing stone and other evidence of human activity dating back hundreds, if not thousands, of years. Wildlife to look out for include Red Grouse amongst the heather, and Lapwing, Golden Plover and Red Kite.

The National Cycle Route 8 (on-road) that runs from Cardiff to Holyhead, passes within 3 miles of the eastern boundary of the common and links with route 42 on the banks of the River Wye. The roads along this route are usually quiet but can be busy in some sections. This route is quite strenuous and generally for the more experienced cyclist.

The A470 from Builth to Rhayader passes close to the village of Llanwrthwl, which is close to the eastern end of Abergwesyn Common. The B4358 running southwest from Newbridge on Wye (also on the A470) takes you to the village of Beulah. From there drive northwest to the Nant Irfon valley; a spectacular valley and steep winding road that leads over the Devil's Staircase and eventually on to Tregaron.

The Wye Valley long distance walking trail cuts along the eastern boundary. This 136-mile trail is way-marked by the distinctive 'leaping salmon' logo and runs from the source of the River Wye in mid-Wales all the way to the mouth of the river near Chepstow Castle.

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Free entry


Nr Llanwrtyd Wells,


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Map reference: SN 857520  Lat: 52.15509 Long: -3.67176