Walking and Cycling
Barmouth is a great centre for walking and cycling for all abilities. Whether you fancy a short excursion between coffee and lunch, or a longer, more energetic full day outing, there are options for all. In September the Barmouth Walking Festival offers over 35 guided walks over 10 days.
We have started putting local walks into the OutdoorActive app. You can view this on a PC or download the app to your phone / tablet. Once downloaded, each walk can be followed with GPS without needing a phone connection. All the walks can be found here.
Follow the Barmouth Heritage Trail to explore the old buildings and sites within Barmouth. This includes visiting Old Barmouth (The Rock) with its improbable alleyways and steps with cottages built on top of each other and gardens squeezed in between the rock, steps and houses.
Take the bridge across the estuary and follow the coast path around to the Fairbourne Railway. There take a trip on the steam train and return to Barmouth via the ferry (in season) or the mainline train.
Walk or drive up Panorama Road to the car park and take a short walk to the viewpoint for stunning panoramic views of the estuary, mountains and sea.
Follow in the footsteps of Julia Bradbury and walk the Mawddach Trail between Dolgellau and Barmouth along the old railway line. This is a level 10 mile walk along the estuary. Take the bus to Dolgellau to start, (or catch the bus to get back home). The George III pub at Penmaenpool is a good spot for lunch, and if the full 10 miles is too much, the bus can be caught from across the toll bridge to get back to Barmouth.
The Mawddach Way is a 50km walk which uses existing footpaths and permissive paths to make a circuit of the hills either side of the Mawddach estuary, passing through woodland, pasture and open country. Although the tranquil setting and spectacular views may seem to be in keeping with the scattered remains of prehistoric settlement, they belie an altogether noisier and dirtier history of industrial exploitation and military use, and each remnant of the past provides plenty of interest to keep the walker entertained along the way.
Taith Ardudwy Way is a well signposted upland pathway of 24 miles from Barmouth in the south to Llandecwyn in the north. The route is divided into three sections; Southern: Barmouth to Talybont (8 miles) Central: Talybont to Harlech (13 miles) Northern: Harlech to Llandecwyn (12 miles).
The Way traverses Ardudwy, an ancient commote, (an administrative area in the Middle Ages). It visits each of the parishes bordering Cardigan Bay and crosses the geological formation of Cambrian Rocks, amongst the oldest in Wales, known as the Harlech Dome. The Way is chosen to take in some of the best coastal and mountain views in Wales, visiting prehistoric sites and offers the chance to see varied vegetation and rare birds of the area.
The Way is mostly on quiet lanes, tracks, and pathways all of which are marked with the Buzzard logo.
Barmouth is on the Wales Coast Path, and the Cambrian Way for those looking for a longer expedition.
Cyclists are also well catered for—Barmouth is on the National Cycle way, with the 8 passing through. For those looking to cycle the full length from Holyhead to Cardiff, Barmouth is conveniently situated at the end of the first day. The 82 complements the 8 with an inland route from Porthmadog to Dolgellau, then it crosses the 8, and heads up into the foothills of Cader Idris before returning to the coast at Tywyn, then along the Dyfi estuary to Machynlleth.
Other nearby options include:
Coed y Brenin: nationally recognised Mountain Biking Centre with 8 routes from family friendly to black.
Antur Stinog: downhill centre with 6 different trails including a double black route.
Following cycle route #8 and #82 you could do a 60 mile loop north or south of Barmouth to explore Southern Snowdonia.
For more local walking and cycling suggestions see the Mawddach Estuary website.