Glyndŵr's Way: Knighton to Welshpool

Celebrate Welsh cultural and natural history along the 135 miles of Glyndŵr's Way. Explore rolling farmland, open moorland, forests, lakes and reservoirs and re-live the adventures of Owain Glyndŵr.

Glyndŵr’s Way follows a horseshoe line through long green valleys and the secluded hill-country of the Radnorshire Hills. Because of its remoteness, Glyndŵr was able to move rapidly and was an elusive presence along these numerous ‘cefnffyrdd’ ancient upland tracks – the key feature in his guerilla campaign against the English.

Today, the countryside has remained hardly changed from those turbulent bygone times. The Trail takes you through the beautiful, secluded hill country of mid Wales, where it is unlikely you will be troubled by crowds; for many, the unspoilt beauty and solitude of the route is its main attraction.

Your walk takes you through a great variety of exciting scenery and terrain. Beginning in Knighton, you soon leave the crowds and head into the East Radnorshire Hills, walking through ancient woodland, over rolling hills, past remote farms and isolated, close-knit, friendly Welsh hamlets.

You come upon wide lakes and reservoirs, views over the steep wooded valleys and the mystical setting of Lake Vyrnwy. The descent to the spectacular setting of Llyn Clywedog will remain with you for some time to come. Enjoy the stillness and solitude of the high open moorland, with panoramic views of mid-Wales and Cardigan Bay in the west, and across to the dramatic peaks of Snowdonia to the north. The notable ranges are Cadair Idris 892m (2,928’) and Pumlumon Fawr 752m (2,468’), far removed from anything that resembles today’s world.

Tour Overview

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

Distance

217km

Days

10 Nights / 9 Days

Grade

Challenging

Theme

History / Wildlife

Landscape Type

Rolling Countryside / High Hills and Moorland

Glyndŵrs Way: Knighton to Welshpool

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 Celtic Trails, They believe that there is no better way to see and appreciate the natural world around us than through walking it. For over 20 years, they have had the pleasure of helping walkers on their journey, with their distinctive personalised service and character accommodations.

This tour includes 10 nights accommodation with 9 walking days. Arrive in Knighton on day 1, walk from day 2 and depart from Welshpool on the morning of day 11. Options to walk the Trail over more days are available.

Your holiday will include a good standard accommodation at a mixture of guesthouses, farmhouses, local inns and B&B’s with ensuite or private facilities wherever possible, breakfast, luggage transfers, personal transfer between accommodation and path where necessary, route planning and a Walk Pack including a Trail Guide and Harvey’s map.

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

Day 1 - Arrive in Knighton

Your walk starts in the lovely little market town of Knighton, midway on the border between England and Wales. The town can be reached easily by train, from Swansea in the south, or Shrewsbury in the north and has good road connections. Settle in for a traditional meal at one of its many pubs in preparation for the walk ahead.

Day 2- Knighton to Felindre

The first day of your walk starts with a small but steady ascent up Garth Hill (346m), where you will be rewarded with lovely views over Knighton. From here, you will ascend another hill, Bailey Hill, before descending into the little village of Llangunllo, where you may like to stop for a drink at the local pub or visit the local shop. From Llangunllo, the path heads back up to the hill tops, where you will spend a few miles walking along beautiful bracken-filled moors before descending into the very small village of Felindre.

24km / 15 miles

Day 3 - Felindre to Abbeycwmhir

The walking today is gentler, starting with a gradual ascent towards the site of an old castle, Castell-Y-Blaidd (no longer in existence). From here a short walk will take you to the village of Llanbadarn Fynydd, which has an excellent pub where you may like to stop for lunch.

After lunch, the trail gently climbs uphill towards open moors and then along a ridgeway with excellent views across the valleys below. You will then descend into the valleys toward the village of Abbeycwmhir, and the ruins of an ancient Cistercian abbey. Although there is little left of the abbey today, it has a fascinating history and was once intended to be one of the biggest abbeys in England and Wales.

24.8km / 15.5 miles

Day 4 - Abbeycwmhir to Llanidloes

Day 4 is one of the more mountainous days, but it also has some of the best views of the entire walk.

The day begins with a steady ascent up towards the ridge of upper Esgair Hill, before descending again through open moor to the village of Bwlch-Y-Sarnau. From here you head through fields and forest for a few miles, after which you will begin to climb a series of steep hills. The path here is quite difficult, but you are rewarded for your hard walk with some truly spectacular landscape and views right in the heart of Wales. At the end, you will reach the lively and pretty little town of Llanidloes, which has plenty of shops, cafe’s, pubs and restaurants to relax in.

24.8km / 15.5 miles

Day 5 - Llanidloes to Dylife

If you have time, you may like to start today looking around Llanidloes with its 16th century Tudor buildings and pretty church.

From Llanidloes, you will begin with some lovely forest walking, followed by a short but steep ascent, and then a gentle descent into the Clywedog Valley. Here you will be treated to some spectacular views of the impressive Clywedog Dam, which you will be able to walk right up to. From the dam, the path climbs steeply through another forest, until you reach an ancient roman road, which you will follow until you reach the small hamlet of Dylife.

23.2km / 14.5 miles

Day 6 - Dylife to Machynlleth

Day 6 is another day of spectacular views. The walk begins through moorland, and the impressive landscape of the Afon Clywedog glacial valley. From here the path descends steeply until you reach Glaslyn, a lake and wildlife sanctuary, with wonderful opportunities for birdwatching. After this, you will climb a steep hill until you reach the highest point on the whole walk, which offers views of vast valleys, Cardigan Bay and the peak of the nearby mountain Foel Fadian.

You will then descend steeply into the valley below, passing across several smaller hills until you reach the historic town of Machynlleth. Machynlleth was once the home of Welsh Princes in the 15th Century, including Owain Glyndwr himself, and there is still plenty to see and do there.

23.2km / 14.5 miles

Day 7 - Machynlleth to Llanbrynmair

Day 7 begins gently, following minor lanes and fields until you reach the little village of Abercegir. You will then climb up through open moorland with lovely views towards one of Wales’ tallest mountains, Cader Idris. For the next few miles, the path is gentle, passing through rolling hills and valleys, with only small ascents and descents. The day ends with a section of forest walking leading to the top of a small hill with wonderful views of the valley below and the village of Llanbrynmair.

25.6km / 16 miles

Day 8 - Llanbrynmair to Llanwddyn

The day starts with a steep climb up through the valley, with fantastic views at the top. The path will then pass through a large forest, and then fields as you make your way towards the top of Pen Coed (360m). From here you will pass through open moorland until you reach the village of Llangadfan, where you may like to stop for lunch.

After lunch, you will walk through the enormous Dynant Forest, gradually reach the peak of a hill which opens to reveal breath-taking views of the Lake Vyrnwy Reservoir below. The Lake Vyrnwy Reservoir with its 33 arch dam is one of the most iconic and beautiful pieces of architecture in the whole of Wales and is surrounded by spectacular landscape.

28.8km / 18 miles

Day 9 - Llanwddyn to Meifod

Day 9 is a gentle day, which begins by following forest tracks and minor roads for several miles, before passing across woodland and fields until you reach the small village of Pont Llogel. You will then follow a lovely route along the River Vyrnwy for most of the day, with plenty of opportunity for spotting birds, until you reach the village of Pontrobert. From here you will walk through farmland until you reach the village of Meifod which has a shop and pub.

24km / 15 miles

Day 10 - Meifod to Welshpool

The last day of your walk is the shortest yet, starting with a steady climb up through the woodland of Broniarth Hill. You will then walk around the lake Llyn Ddu, which is followed by a few miles of farmland walking. There is a final small climb at the end of the walk, with a great view at the top, before you head steadily towards your final destination, the town of Welshpool.

17.6km / 11 miles

Day 11 - Depart Welshpool

You may like to spend today exploring the old market town of Welshpool, which was a key town in Owain Glyndwr’s fight again the English and the site of a bloody battle. A particular highlight is Powis Castle, a magnificent 13th century castle, just south of the town with a fascinating history.

When you are ready to depart, you will find train connections to Shrewsbury, and bus connections to Birmingham and London. Alternatively, a taxi can be arranged to take you back to Knighton.

Accommodation

Celtic Trails pride themselves on a good standard accommodation. You will be staying in a mix of accommodation including guesthouses, farmhouses, local inns and B&B’s with ensuite or private facilities wherever possible. Breakfast will be provided. Wherever necessary transfer between your accommodation and the path is included.

This tour includes 10 nights’ accommodation.

Travel

Bus

Rural buses offer a fragmented service, particularly on the southern part of the route. Reliable services link the towns of Llanidloes, Machynlleth and Welshpool.

Check Traveline for latest timetable information and journey planning.

Rail

There are stations at both ends of the Trail. Knighton station is on The Heart of Wales line which links Shrewsbury with Swansea. Machynlleth and Welshpool are both on the Cambrian line which runs from Shrewsbury to Aberystwyth and Pwllheli.

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

Advice

The route is rated moderate to challenging  and takes you through a great variety of exciting scenery and terrain.  You should be aware that it crosses country that is sometimes rough and remote. It is a very quiet National Trail so if you are looking for peace and tranquillity, this is the perfect trail.

We recommend the route is walked from March to October.

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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