Coed Taf Fawr and Garwnant Forest Visitor Centre.
Today’s Walking Wednesday comes from holiday accommodation favourite’s Brecon Beacons Holiday Cottages. It’s a simple circular walk through the Coed Taf Fawr Forest and starts at the Garwnant Forest Park Visitor Centre.
They’ve chosen this walk because it’s an ideal walk for families looking for a fun day out, as you can combine a pleasant walk and also spend some fun time at Garwnant Forest Visitor Centre which has plenty of fun things for children to do. The walk goes through a forest that covers part of the Tafff Trail known as the Wern Walk. The walk offers a great range of views from the stunning mountainside, old derelict buildings to some picturesque waterfalls.
The Centre has a restaurant, gift shop and a very fun play area that includes a rope course, it’s a very family orientated place.
Distance – 3.2km (2 miles).
Start Point – Garwnant Forest Centre.
Grid Reference – SO 002131.
Parking – Garwnant Forest Centre Car Park.
Directions – It’s easy to get to by car: From Brecon take the A470 towards Methyr Tydfil. From Brecon drive along the A470 for 15.7 miles, Garwnant Visitor Centre is sign posted on the right. Take the right turning and follow the narrow road up until you come to a car park. Alternatively coming from South Wales, from Merthyr Tydfil it’s 7 km north along the A470.
To start the walk head towards the rope course, this is the part where the children run straight to the playground! Once you have gathered them up follow the signs for the Taff Trail onto the standout forest track/ trail. You should see waymark posts with green arrows, which are in place to guide walkers all the way around. Follow the trail along, through the great diverse Coed Taf Fawr woodland.
A quarter of the way through the walk, you’ll come across an old derelict farm called Wern Farm. Your going the right way if the derelict farm on your left. Continue along the trail that will start getting narrower and depending on the weather it might get a little bit muddier as well.
After about 5 minutes of walking you’ll arrive at a fairly small stream (also depend on weather/ time of year). Cross over and continue along the path. You’ll then come across a crossroad of tracks; you must keep going straight ahead, the Taff Trail will drop down to the right up the Taf Fawr Valley towards Brecon.
Continue heading in the same direction along a more open path. You’ll come to some ruined some ruined buildings where you’ll see the Taff Trail turning a sharp left to go uphill. Follow the trail up hill and you should see another stream down on your right side and further from that, a woodland that has been cut down towards Nant-Ddu. At the top of this section, you’ll meet a larger surfaced forest road. You’ll know you’re going the right direction if you see the way marker post with a green arrow on it.
Take a left onto this and follow. It’s an easy part of the walk, with great views from all sides. Eventually you’ll cross the bridleway track that you would have seen at the beginning of the walk on the way out. Then not long after that, you’ll walk past another forest track, continue along until you get to the junction, where it drops into the valley and goes left. Go down the hill towards the Garwnant River that now should be on your right. There are some beautiful waterfalls to your right that takes the river down which will signal the end to your walk, just like the river final leg of it’s journey which flows into the Afon Taf Fawr near the Llywn-on Reservoir. Follow the path down; you’ll then come across a good path on the left that will lead you back to the visitor centre.
If you’re feeling puckish or in need of a light refreshment stop by the Garwnant Forest Visitor Centre Café.
Brecon Beacons Holiday Cottages have over 300 holiday cottages on their books. There’s a place to stay for everyone, with accommodations that are ideal for large groups, couples looking for a romantic break or families looking for some fun.
Cottages close to this walk:
Dan y Bryn – A comfortable cottage sleeping 8 that is in the Melte Valley where the River Neath emerges from some lovely waterfalls and some of the finest sequences of caves.
Stable Lost, Foresters Granary – Three peaceful renovated courtyard cottages in walker’s paradise! So well renovated they were recently awarded four stars.
Baddegai – A Traditional Welsh Stone Longhouse, secluded with direct access onto the Beacons. Great place to get away, whilst enjoying a comfortable stay.