Glyndŵr's Way: Knighton to Machynlleth

Glyndŵr's Way is located in the breath-taking unspoilt countryside of central Wales. Few walking holidays are so remote and unspoilt.

Starting in Knighton, this tour follow 73 miles of Glyndŵrs Way National Trail. Knighton has been a Mid Wales market town since 1230 and is still a thriving livestock market. The town is rich in history with half-timbered houses from the 17th century and narrow winding streets. Situated at the half way point of the National Trail, your adventure ends in the small town of Machynlleth. Here, you can see Glyndŵr’s Parliament House. In the 15th century, Machynlleth was declared the capital of Wales by Owain Glyndŵr – of course, nowadays the capital is Cardiff.

Tour Overview

The icons below highlight the distance, difficulty and theme of this itinerary.

Distance

117km

Days

5

Grade

Moderate

Theme

History / Wildlife

Landscape Type

Rolling Countryside / High Hills and Moorland

Glyndŵrs Way: Knighton to Machynlleth

Every step of the journey has been carefully planned to help you make the most of your walking adventure. Click on the blue tabs below for more information.

Tour Details

This itinerary is offered by Great British Walks, a company owned and run by walking enthusiasts Julie and Nick Thomas, who live in Monmouthshire, on the borders of England and Wales.

Nick and Julie have never taken it for granted that they live in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and both enjoy walking in the great outdoors. The couple have spent most of their holidays walking the length and breadth of the UK, mostly on the National Trails of England, Scotland and Wales, each time discovering new highlights and lovely places for walking holidays and accommodation.

Great British Walks arrange all accommodation including breakfast, luggage transfers between overnight stops, and transfers between the accommodation and path should your overnight stay be away from the trail. They supply your route planning in the form of a Holiday Pack that includes a Trail Guide (and map, where necessary), your itinerary, accommodation directions and local interest leaflets.

To find out more about this itinerary and make an enquiry or a booking, click on the Enquire Now button at the top of the page. The Save to My Rucksack button allows you to save itineraries to view later, or to download them as a PDF.

Itinerary

Arrival day - Arrive in Knighton

Check into your comfortable accommodation in Knighton and then spend the rest of the day exploring this thriving market town. Knighton is called Tref-y-Clawdd in Welsh which translates as “the town on the dyke”. Two National Trails – Glyndŵr’s Way and the Offa’s Dyke Path meet here.

The Offa’s Dyke Centre in West Street is the Tourist Information Centre. Find out about King Offa and his famous Dyke, and then go and see one of the several parts of the Dyke that are still visible around the town.

Day 1- Knighton to Felindre

Glyndŵr’s Way starts with an immediate ascent up a cobbled street from the clock tower in the centre of town. It meanders easily out of Knighton and then climbs through quiet Radnorshire pasturelands. The Trail then takes you up over farmland onto the wild moorland of Beacon Hill – one of the most open and attractive parts of the route. In late summer the heather turns the landscape purple as far as you can see. The hills and moors gradually give way to farmland again as you drop into Felindre.

25 km / 15 miles

Day 2 - Felindre to Abbeycwmhir

You leave Felindre through grassy fields and later meet a quiet country lane. Then it is up and over the lonely, high pastures past the ancient earthwork of Castell y Blaidd (Castle of the Wolf) and then an easy walk down into Llanbadarn Fynydd. From Llanbadarn the trail quickly ascends to the open moorland again providing wonderful long views to east and west. When you have passed the trig point on Ysgwd Ffordd at 440 metres it is downhill all the way to the long lane that takes you into Abbeycwmhir.

25 km/15.5 miles

 

Day 3 - Abbeycwmhir to Llanidloes

Abbeycwmhir takes its name from a Cistercian abbey founded in 1143. The village also has a very attractive church that is always open. The Trail takes you past the church on a sunken green lane, climbing gently up and down through forestry and fields.

From Blaentrinant the Trail zigzags through some of the most picturesque and hilly countryside on the route. You will see a windfarm high up on the hills above you as you drop steeply down towards the watery valley bottoms clothed in drifts of old woodland. You will have earned the rest when you arrive in the lively town of Llanidloes with many pubs and cafes at your service.

24.5 km / 15.5 miles

Day 4 - Llanidloes to Dylife

The Trail starts at the lovely old Market hall in the centre of Llanidloes. It crosses the river Severn and then makes its way towards the spectacular Clywedog Dam and the impressive ruins of Bryntail mine. Shortly afterwards you arrive on the shores of Llyn Clywedog and later climb high above the reservoir on the way to Afon Biga. The picnic site here is a lovely place to stop for a paddle in the stream. Continue along the Trail enjoying the beautiful scenery and take a short detour off the route to your overnight stop at Dylife.

22.5 km / 14.5 miles

Day 5 - Dylife to Machynlleth

This section will see you walking up to the old roman road above Dylife. Watch out for the green remains of a fortlet as you pass along the route used by Roman soldiers nearly two thousand years ago. A little later you will encounter the spectacular Clywedog Gorge and shortly afterwards you will be walking over the moorland surrounding Glaslyn. Foel Fadian (564 metres) looms above the track and it is well worth the detour to the trig point and to see the spectacular 360 degree views from the top.

From Aberhosen a demanding climb awaits you as you walk on quiet lanes and then farm track up towards Cefn Modfedd. Then a walk through forestry towards the green track high above Cwm Cemrhiw. This leads you to a long section of felled forestry and common land high above Machynlleth and will bring you down into the town via the ‘Roman Steps’. Owain Glyndŵr was crowned Prince of Wales and established his parliament here in 1404. Machynlleth is a vibrant and entertaining town especially on the Wednesday market day.

22 km / 14.5 miles

Accommodation

Great British Walks always book recommended local accommodation as close as possible to Glyndŵr’s Way and hope to give you a flavour of different types of accommodations and you may stay in a Bed & Breakfast, a Guesthouse, maybe a Farmhouse, and sometimes a local Inn or a small Hotel. En-suite or private facilities are provided wherever possible.

This 5 day tour includes 6 nights’ accommodation.

Travel

Bus

There are local bus services to/from Knighton but they can be infrequent so please check times before you travel.

The ‘Offa Hoppa’ service links Kington, Presteigne and Knighton and there are several services a day.

Check Traveline for latest timetable information and journey planning.

Rail

Knighton is one of the stops on the lovely Heart of Wales rail line. Destinations include Swansea (3¼ hours), Llandeilo (2¼ hours), Llanwrtyd Wells (80 minutes), Llandrindod Wells (38 minutes) and Shrewsbury (54 minutes).

Visit www.nationalrail.co.uk for rail information and journey planning.

Advice

Anyone who is reasonably fit can walk the Glyndŵr’s Way, although it is very hilly, often dropping into valleys and ascending hills several times in a day. This tour is moderate and involves 5 days of between 22 and 25 km each day (14-15 miles each day). You should be aware that it crosses country that is sometimes rough and remote. The ability to navigate by compass will be very welcome if it is misty.

Food & Drink

In Wales there is a strong tradition of living off the land, stretching back as far as the ancient Celts. Food has historically been simple wholesome fare – thrifty dishes made with just a few simple, quality ingredients. Today Wales has a wealth of organic farmers’ markets, artisan producers, food festivals, and award-winning restaurants, all waiting for you to enjoy.

The prime natural resources of Wales have shaped the country’s culinary tradition. Welsh lamb is justifiably world famous, farmed on the lush mountains and valleys. Cheese has long been a traditional food of Wales and award-winning varieties grace the cheese boards of homes and restaurants alike. Look out for Welsh specialities such as laverbread, bara brith and cawl – you might not get these at home!

If you’re gasping for a drink at the end of a long day on the Trail then you won’t be disappointed – Wales is well known for its beer. From the UK’s biggest family owned independent brewery, Brains, to small boutique breweries, most areas of Wales have a local brewery. You’ll also find local ciders and wines – there are over 20 Welsh vineyards, producing award winning wines.

Maps, Guidebooks and Merchandise

The official guidebook and map for the Trail are available from the National Trails Shop along with a wide range of gifts and other merchandise.

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