Ardudwy Way

Guided Trail

Code: DGLAR

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Activity types:

  • High Mountains
  • Rural peace

Level

  • Medium
More information

Difficulty indicator

Difficulty is measured on many factors such as distance, ascent/descent, terrain, weather and more. There's no magic formula, but from our experience we use yellow for easy, orange for medium and red for hard. Challenger holidays require a high level of fitness and stamina.

More about difficulty levels

From £399.00 - 4 nights

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Prices are per person

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Holiday overview

  • A classic Welsh walk chosen to take in some of the best coastal and mountain views in Wales
  • Pass the spectacular and famous Harlech Castle
  • Walk between the rocky Rhinog ridge on one side and the coast of Cardigan Bay on the other
  • Meander past lakes, old mines, ancient hillforts, burial sites, and stone circles
  • Fascinating wildlife including red kites, chough, ravens, rare wetland species and even wild goats!

Holiday highlights

The Ardudwy Way between the Dwyryd and the Mawddach estuaries may not be familiar to many walkers, but is a spectacular three days trail.  With the rocky Rhinog ridge on one side and the coast on the other, en route to Barmouth, it has outstanding views and much wildlife and historical interest. 

What's included

  • 4 nights Full Board en-suite accommodation
  • The services of an experienced HF Holidays’ trails leader
  • All transport on walking days

Accommodation

Visit Wales 4 star guest accommodation logo at HF Holidays

Dolserau Hall offers an unparalleled level of comfort and quality. The location, a couple of miles from the attractive market town of Dolgellau, is a real delight. Extensive views stretch over the surrounding hills, with the summit of Cadair Idris in the background.

 

Bedrooms

Dolserau Hall has 24 en-suite bedrooms, all of a good size and furnished to a high standard. Rooms are either located in the main building or the tastefully converted coach house.

Our classic bedrooms offer comfortable accommodation and an en-suite bathroom with bath or shower. They also have TV, hairdryer, and tea and coffee making facilities. Single rooms are available for an extra £8 per night.

You can enjoy extra space or exceptional views plus additional facilities including a towelling robe and complimentary slippers when you upgrade to a premium bedroom. Premium rooms are available at just £5 extra per person per night.    

 

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Facilities

All our Country Houses are tailored to the needs of walkers and outdoor enthusiasts and have excellent boot and drying rooms.

The main public space is a large lounge bar, which sits at the heart of the house. This is a very comfortable and flexible space, ideal for relaxing after your walks or activities. Leading from the main lounge is the smaller 'bistro'. This room can also be used for activities in the evening and for leisure activity holidays. The attractive dining room can be divided into three sections, either creating one large space, or smaller and more intimate dining rooms. Free WiFi is available in the public rooms. There is also a range of board games and books.

Dolserau Hall sits amidst attractive gardens in a beautiful peaceful location. There are extensive views from the front of the house across the valley, with the summit of Cadair Idris in the background.

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Food

All holidays at our Country Houses are Full Board with all meals included, from dinner on arrival to breakfast on the day of your departure.

Start your day with our extensive breakfast. Choose from a wide selection on the cold buffet and/or a full cooked breakfast. Maybe enjoy a lighter option of fruit and yoghurt followed by scrambled egg, go for porridge followed by a full Welsh breakfast, or select something in between.

Choose from our famous self-select picnic lunches - everything you need to keep you going on a day outdoors. Your own choice of sandwiches is prepared to order, and you can add crisps and snacks, fruit, nuts, chocolate bars, sweets and biscuits as you wish.     

Our house-based Leisure Activities include an in-house lunch (generally soup, sandwiches etc).   

The relaxed dinner is a highlight of any stay at our Country Houses. With tables seating up to 10 and no seating plan, it offers a great opportunity to get to know your fellow guests. There is always a choice of dishes for every course, featuring good British cooking and often local specialities. A vegetarian option is always available.

All our Country Houses have a well-stocked bar serving local beers, wine and spirits.

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Evening

Guided Walking: enjoy a glass of wine or local beer in the bar before a talk about the next day's walks. After dinner there will be an activity or entertainment which you will be welcome to join. These vary from week to week but could include a talk on local history from a visiting speaker or a team quiz. Alternatively if you prefer, feel free to just relax in our lounge or bar.

Leisure Activities: many of our Leisure Activities holidays continue into the evening with programmed sessions. Other holidays will have the evenings free, and you will be welcome to join in other social activities that may be happening in the house.

Self-Guided Walking: there may be evening social activities happening in the house during your holiday, and you will be most welcome to join in. However, not all self-guided holidays will have evening activities available – if these are important to you, please check before booking.

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Accessibility

Dolserau Hall is a Victorian mansion, 150 years old, built in the grand style with large rooms, large doors and wide corridors which are well lit. The building remains essentially the same layout as when it was built, except that a lift has been installed to the 2nd floor of the main house. The original Coach House was converted several years ago to provide 5 individual bedrooms, each with independent access to the Coach House driveway.

The house is reached via a tarmac road. From this road, the house is approached via a gravel driveway.

Cars can pull up to the front door of the house or to each of the individual access doors in the Coach House to disembark passengers and luggage. There is a single step through the main house front door. A ramp is provided at the front door when required. The main car park, which has 20 parking spaces, is adjacent to, and on the same level as, the house.

The reception area has seating for guests to wait. Assistance with luggage is available on request.

The whole of the ground floor of the main house is accessible to wheelchairs including the restaurant & bar - there are no steps.

The house does not have public toilets fully equipped for wheelchair access.

The main house bedrooms are situated: on the 1st floor, reached by a grand Victorian staircase with a banister; on the 2nd floor which is reached either by a further staircase from the 1st floor or by lift from the main hall. In the Coach House, each bedroom has its own individual access from the yard, 3 of these at ground floor level with parking adjacent to the door, one of which is especially suitable for wheelchair access.

All the bedrooms have en-suite bathroom facilities, seven having a separate walk-in shower, the remainder have a shower over the bath.

Guests who have problems with mobility can be accommodated in a range of different rooms depending on the nature of their special needs. Other disabilities such as hearing or sight problems can generally be accommodated on request.

Although we have tried to be as accurate & include as much detail as possible, we are always willing to give information on any aspect of the house if this statement does not answer your particular query.

Holiday itinerary

Planned Itinerary

Llandecwyn to Harlech

From Llandecwyn on the Dwyryd estuary we head to Llyn Decwyn Uchaf, the upper lake. From our first viewpoint we get a glimpse of Harlech Castle, then from a small church we get ‘the best views in Wales’, before decending to Llyn Decwyn Isaf, the lower lake. Walking /hiking in wild open country we reach our highest point of the day; the ancient burial cairn of Bryn Cader Faner. We continue with views of the Dwyryd Estuary and Portmeirion, (The Italian style village designed by Clough Williams-Ellis). With Criccieth Castle and Porthmadog before us we walk towards Harlech with perhaps time to visit the castle. Distance: 12 miles (19km) with 1,900 feet (570m) of ascent.

Harlech to Tal y Bont

From Harlech we continue south on a challenging path to the River Artro. We cross the Cwmnantcol valley with a super viewpoint above the coastline. We can see Shell Island with some of the highest sand dunes in the UK. We contour the lower slopes of Moelfre and the Rhinog ridge looms in front of us. In the middle of nowhere lies the 16th century stone bridge of Pont Scethin, which carried the mail coaches across the river on their way to Harlech from London. We pass Llyn Erddyn and then down from Pont Fadog with its ancient stone bridge and tree lined valley to Tal y Bont. Distance: 13 miles (21km) with 1,800 feet (540m) of ascent.

 

Tal y Bont to Barmouth

From Tal y Bont we ascend the valley to Pont Fadog and up to Bwlch y Rhiwgyr, our highest point of the whole walk at 1,500 feet (450m). Going down towards Cerrig Arthur (Arthur's Stones), we get superb views of the wide Mawddach Estuary and Cader Idris ahead. We can glimpse the Llyn Peninsula in the distance, with the island of Bardsey at its tip (where it is said there are 20,000 saints buried). As we zigzag our way down, a panoramic view of our destination, the seaside town of Barmouth, lies below us. Distance: 8 miles (13km) with 1,800 feet (540m) of ascent.

The itinerary may be subject to change at the discretion of the leader with regard to the weather and other external factors 

Local area

During your stay at Dolserau Hall you may enjoy visiting the following places of interest, either in your free time, or on your journey to and from Snowdonia:

Talyllyn Railway
This narrow guage railway was the first in the world to be taken over and run by volunteers. The line runs from the coast at Tywyn to the former slate quarries at Nant Gwernol. Historic locomotives and carriages, some dating back to the line's opening in 1864 add to the unique atmosphere. The nearest station is at Abergynolwyn, about 25 minutes' drive from Dolserau Hall. www.talyllyn.co.uk

Great Little Trains of Wales
Snowdonia is noted for its concentration of narrow guage steam railways, all of which offer highly scenic journeys. The Ffestiniog Railway, Vale of Rheidol and the Welshpool & Llanfair railways are all within reach. You may also want to experience the newly rebuilt Welsh Highland Railway which runs from Porthmadog to Caernarfon. www.greatlittletrainsofwales.co.uk

Harlech Castle
Built by King Edward I after his conquest of Wales, Harlech Castle is one of the most historically important and well preserved fortifications in the principality. Along with neighbouring castles at Caernarfon, Beaumaris and Conwy it now has World Heritage status. Around 45 minutes' drive from Dolserau Hall. www.cadw.wales.gov.uk/harlechcastle

Centre for Alternative Technology
Situated near Machynlleth, around 20 minutes' from Dolserau Hall, the Centre for Alternative Technology is at the forefront of researching and teaching sustainable living. Displays focus on green technology, energy efficiency and organic farming. www.cat.org.uk

RSPB Reserves
The nearby RSPB reserves at Arthog Bog, Coed Garth Gell and Ynis-hir offer a wide variety of habitats including oak woodland, heathland and salt-marsh that attracts an equally diverse range of birds.

Portmeirion
This quaint Italianate village was the brainchild of the architect Clough Williams-Ellis. It is also well-known as the setting for the cult 1960’s TV series The Prisoner. Portmeirion is around 35 minutes' drive from Dolserau Hall. www.portmeirion-village.com

Travel

Dolserau Hall, Dolgellau, Gwynedd  LL40 2AG

By train: The most convenient railway station is Machynlleth. For train times and general rail enquiries visit www.nationalrail.co.uk or call 03457 484950 (from outside the UK call +44 20 7278 5240).

By taxi: The 16 mile journey from Machynlleth railway station takes approximately 30 minutes. Taxis cost approx £30 per taxi. Every year we negotiate a pre-booked rate for these journeys. Details of our current recommended taxi company and rates will be sent to you with your booking. We recommend pre-booking your taxi and the taxi company will arrange shared taxis wherever possible. The return taxi journey can be arranged on your behalf by the Dolserau Hall Manager.

By car: From the north head to Chester then take the M53 and A55 around the south of Chester. Join the A550 then the A5104 for about 20 miles, then finally the A494 signposted to Bala. Stay on the A494 through Bala heading towards Dolgellau. A mile after the junction for the B4416 to Brithdir, take the next turning on the left, after the campsite. Follow the country lane for ½ mile to Dolserau Hall. Look out for the sign.

From the south take the M54 and A5 to Shrewsbury. Follow the A5 around the south of Shrewsbury and join the A458 towards Welshpool. Continue on the A458 through Welshpool and after a further 27 miles turn right at a roundabout onto the A470 towards Dolgellau. Look out for the garage and Little Chef on the right as you come down the hill before Dolgellau. Turn right immediately before the garage and drive along a country lane for approx 1 mile to Dolserau Hall. Look out for the sign. 

A large car park is available in the grounds with free parking. 

To help you plan your journey, use www.traveline.info

Reviews

Date & Rating Customer Review HF Holidays says
13 Sep 2016, 1:13 p.m.

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It's a splendid way for people travelling alone to enjoy good company and visit lovely parts of the country

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Very well-run house, delicious meals. Pity about the weather.
11 Sep 2016, 4:35 p.m.

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Very pleased with booking service.

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An excellent house in a great location
10 Sep 2016, 6:29 p.m.

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Everything was organised correctly and ran smoothly, so I can only say ' well done'

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This was a good trail to follow, just a shame about the weather but that's Wales. I really enjoyed the four nights at Dolgellau and will be back.
10 Sep 2016, 7:20 a.m.

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Met up with good company, ate very good food and enjoyed my holiday
10 Sep 2016, 7:04 a.m.

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First visit very impressed with whole experience
9 May 2015, 9 p.m.

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beautiful location

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excellent leader
6 May 2015, 2:24 p.m.

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Dolserau Hall is in a beautiful location. Welcoming and friendly manager. Good accommodation.

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Loved the Ardudwy Way. Stunning views. Excellent walking leader.
6 May 2015, 8:16 a.m.

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We had been to Dolserau Hall before and knew what to expect and this stay certainly lived up to our expectations.

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The Ardudwy Way was excellent. Good views each day. An excellent leader and a good group to share our holiday.
3 Jun 2014, 12:22 p.m.

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Booking procedure good. Staff on phone very helpful. Information provided good and accurate.

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Walking guide was excellent - very organised, knowledgeable and had planned the guided walks very thoroughly. He set a good pace and really looked after the group well.
Accomodation very good. Catering for gluten free (coeliac) was very good but not for dairy free and allergies despite 2 emails and a phone call.
2 Jun 2014, 10:08 a.m.

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very well organised

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Excellent food and service very good wallk

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Dates & Prices

Date Description Nights Brochure price Buy today for Book
1 May 2017 DGLAR - Ardudwy Way - Dolgellau 4 £459.00 £399.00 OFFER - Save £60 pp Book Now
24 Jun 2017 DGLAR - Ardudwy Way - Dolgellau 4 £499.00 £439.00 OFFER - Save £60 pp Book Now
16 Sep 2017 DGLAR - Ardudwy Way - Dolgellau 4 £499.00 £439.00 OFFER - Save £60 pp Book Now

Prices are per person

Information

  • Standard single room: (2016) £8 per night; (2017) no supplement
  • Premium single room: £15 per night (2017 only)
  • Premium twin/double room: (2016) £5 per person per night; (2017) £10 per person per night
  • Non-member associate fee: (2016) £5 per person; (2017) £10 per person