Cambrian Way North Guided Trail Holiday
Follow the Cambrian Way from Rhinogs to Carneddau
Code: BGLCMPrint page
Choosing the level of your walks
Our easy grading system shows whether a region offer gentle strolls or more challenging routes to help you choose the right holiday for you. 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 grade our walks 1 to 5 (where 1 is easy and 5 hard). Our challenger holidays require a high level of fitness and stamina.
A guided trail on the Cambrian Way is a great way to explore some of Wales’ highest, wildest and most beautiful parts. Our week-long section follows the long-distance route between Barmouth and Rowen, from the Rhinogs to the Carneddau and crossing some of the Snowdonia National Park’s most famous peaks, including Snowdon, with incredible and rewarding views.
- 7 nights’ Full Board en-suite accommodation with all meals
- The services of an experienced HF Holidays’ guide
- All transport to and from the route is provided on walking days
- Social activities in the evening
Craflwyn Hall offers a stunning and peaceful location on the edge of Beddgelert village. There are superb walks right on the doorstep, with the local mountains of Snowdon and Moel Hebog within easy reach.
Leased from the National Trust, Craflwyn Hall has 21 bedrooms, located in the main building and in the stable block which has been converted retaining many of the original features.
These rooms are all ensuite and furnished to a good standard. They include:
These rooms are slightly larger and/or have a better view. They include:
Only an extra £15 per person per night
Choose Your Room: Our new “Choose Your Room” service is available at our UK country houses, providing the option to choose and confirm a specific room for an extra £30 per room. Supplement to upgrade to 'Better' rooms still apply. The choice of room number must be of the same room type as originally booked and is subject to availability.
At the house
|All holidays at our Country Houses are full board accommodation including evening meal on arrival to breakfast on the day of your departure. All of our Country Houses have a well-stocked bar serving local beers, wine and spirits.
√ Start your day with our extensive breakfast.
Just relax and take it easy, or if you'd like to continue to chat with our guides and fellow guests then why not grab a drink or take part in one of our optional evening activities.
All of our bars are stocked with locally sourced drinks so you can really soak up your surroundings.
Craflwyn Hall is generally accessible to wheelchair users. There are no ground floor rooms, but there is a lift. One of the rooms on the 1st floor has a converted bathroom that is suitable for wheelchair users.
- Fire procedure is displayed in each room and guests are requested to read the booklets in the rooms regarding safety procedures. Guests requiring assistance at an evacuation are identified at this time and door hanger cards are issued on request. An under-pillow vibrating pad is available on request
- Good signage for fire escape routes
- Internet access computer available free of charge. Free Wifi
- Mobile phone reception in the house and surrounding area is not available
- One bedroom key issued per room (second key available on request)
- Guide dogs can be provided for
- Information can be provided in large print
Day 1: Arrival Day
Day 2: Barmouth to Graigddu Isaf
We start from the seaside resort of Barmouth. As we climb up to reach the ridge of the Rhinogs we can look back across the Mawddach Estuary to the Cader Idris range of mountains. At about 1,500 feet we gain a lovely grassy ridge which leads us to Diffwys (2,460ft) with some pleasant ups and downs. Here the going gets rougher, and spectacular cliffs drop to the east of our path which leads on to Y Llethr, the high point of the day at 2,475 feet. Care is needed on the descent to the beautiful Llyn Hywel. From here, we go over Rhinog Fach then drop down to Bwlch Drws Ardudwy, ending with a forest walk. 12.5 miles (20km) with 3,900 feet (1,180m) of ascent.
Day 3: Graigddu Isaf to Llyn Trawsfynydd
We set off through forestry to ascend 1,700 feet to the summit of Rhinog Fawr. We descend by the attractive Llyn Du and the famous Roman Steps to Cwm Bychan, or we can stay along the top by Llyn Pryfed to reach Bwlch Gwylim, and continue over Moel Ysgyfarnogod. Descending to the north east we pass over Diffwys down to Moelfryn on the southern shore of Llyn Transfynydd. 11 miles (17.5km) with 3,550 feet (1,080m) of ascent.
Day 4: Rhyd y Sarn to Craflwyn Hall
Omitting the section which passes the Power Station at Trawsfynydd, we rejoin the Cambrian Way to the north of Trawsfynydd in the Vale of Ffestiniog and walk through woodland to follow the Ffestiniog Railway on its way to the reservoir of Tanygrisiau. More demanding walking takes us up past the Stwlan dam and the pumped reservoir to the summit of Moelwyn Mawr (2,527 feet). Our way then goes northwards past deserted quarries and on to Llyn yr Adar, where we turn south west along the superb ridge over Cnicht, turning right at the end to follow an attractive route to Craflwyn Hall. 14 miles (22.5km) with 4,100 feet (1,250) of ascent.
Day 5: Craflwyn Hall to Pen-y-Pass via Snowdon
From Craflwyn Hall, we take the National Trust marked path to meet the Watkin Path, which leads us up past delightful waterfalls and interesting remains of old mining operations. We use one of these manmade inclines to branch up to Bwlch Cwm Llan (the pass of Cwm Llan), and from here we follow the south ridge to the top of Snowdon, 3,560 feet. It is then downhill all the way along the railway track for half a mile, and then follows the popular Pyg track to the coach at Pen-y-Pass. 10.5 miles (17km) with 4,200 feet (1,280m) of ascent.
Day 6: Pen-y-Pass to Llyn Ogwen via the Glyders
From the youth hostel at Pen-y-Pass we climb up over meadows that formed part of the farm described in the book “I Bought a Mountain”, and this leads us up on faint paths to the rocky summit of Glyder Fawr, 3,279 feet. We follow the rough path to its twin, Glyder Fach, which is 17 feet lower, and look at the curious cantilever stone. We drop down to meet the track used by the miners going home to Bethesda from Snowdon, and this takes us over Bwlch Tryfan and down to Ogwen Cottage. We then continue to the east end of Llyn Ogwen. 7 miles (11.5km) with 2,700 feet (820m) of ascent.
Day 7: Llyn Ogwen and over the Carneddau to Rowen
Starting opposite Tryfan, we follow the Afon Lloer and on up a rocky path to Pen yr Ole Wen, 3,211 feet. We now have a glorious stretch of about 6 miles along the top of the Carneddau, nearly all of it over 3,000 feet. We take in the peaks of Carnedd Dafydd, Carnedd Llewelyn (at 3,490 it is only 70 feet lower than Snowdon), Foel Grach, Garnedd Uchaf and Foel Fras. We see the famous Black Ladder crags on our left and the going is a mixture of good paths and rough sections over loose rock. Good visibility is a bonus here. The ridge then drops down over Drum as we approach the north coast, and at Bwlch y Ddeufaen we pick up an old Roman road to the Inn at Rowen. 14 miles (22km) with 3,650 feet (1,110m) of ascent.
The itinerary may be subject to change at the discretion of the leader with regard to the weather and other external factors
The picturesque village of Beddgelert is about 1 mile from Craflwyn Hall. Facilities here are limited and include a post office, pubs and cafés. The nearest town is Porthmadog, about 8 miles away, which has a wide range of shops and facilities
During your visit to Craflwyn Hall you may enjoy visiting the following places of interest:
Welsh Highland Railway
The recently re-opened Welsh Highland railway runs from Caernarfon to Porthmadog, passing through Beddgelert on route. This is a spectacular journey which includes the dramatic Aberglaslyn Pass and views of Snowdon. The steep gradients require powerful locomotives which have to work particularly hard on the climb from Beddgelert to the summit of the line at Rhyd Ddu. www.festrail.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 and Snowdon Moutain Railways are both within reach. For a truly unique day out you can take the mountain railway to the summit of Snowdon (best to book in advance as tickets can sell out quickly on busy days). www.greatlittletrainsofwales.co.uk
National Slate Museum
Located at Llanberis, the excellent, and free, National Slate Museum tells the story of this once extensive industry. You can see slate being cut by hand, the huge waterwheel that powers the machinery, and the fascinating quarrymen's houses which show their development over the centuries. Llanberis is around 30 minutes' drive from Beddgelert, and can also be reached using the Snowdon Sherpa bus. www.museumwales.ac.uk/slate
Built by King Edward I after his conquest of Wales, Caernarfon Castle is one of the most impressive and well preserved fortifications in the principality. Along with neighbouring castles at Harlech, Beaumaris and Conwy it now has World Heritage status. Caernarfon is around 30 minutes' drive from Beddgelert, or can be reached using the Welsh Highland Railway. www.cadw.wales.gov.uk
The seaside town of Criccieth is around 25 minutes' drive from Beddgelert, and full of Victorian character. You could visit the historic castle, relax on the beach, or sample the excellent ice cream at Cadwaders parlour.
The long arm of the Llyn Peninsula offers beautiful and contrasting scenery, with wild cliffs and white sandy coves. Enjoy the glorious beaches at Aberdaron or Abersoch, or walk to the tip of the peninsula and enjoy the views of Bardsey Island.
Harlech Castle occupies a superb vantage point overlooking the coast and the mountains of Snowdonia. Built by Edward I, its imposing walls were built by 1,000 skilled craftsmen between 1283 and 1295. www.cadw.gov.uk
Llechwedd Slate Caverns
Located near Bleanau Ffestiniog, about 30 minutes' drive from Beddgelert, the Llechwedd Slate Caverns are one of the area's most popular attractions. Take the underground railway deep into the mountain where a knowledgeable guide will tell you how slate was hewn by hand. www.llechwedd-slate-caverns.co.uk
Situated in the Conwy Valley, about 50 minutes' drive from Beddgelert, the National Trust's gardens at Bodnant have impressive collections of colour and views of the Snowdonian mountains. www.nationaltrust.org.uk/bodnant-garden
The grand house at Plas Newydd enjoys glorious views overlooking the Menai Straits. Built for the 1st Marquess of Anglesey, the house itself is impressive, as are the extensive gardens. Now managed by the National Trust. Around 50 minutes' drive from Beddgelert. www.nationaltrust.org.uk/plas-newydd
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 20 minutes' drive from Beddgelert. www.portmeirion-village.com
Plas Newydd image ©National Trust Images/John Millar. Caernarfon Castle and Harlech Castle images © Crown copyright (2016) Welsh Government
Travel to Snowdon
Our address is: Craflwyn Hall, Beddgelert, Gwynedd, LL55 4NG
The nearest railway stations are Porthmadog and Betws-y-Coed; however we would recommend taking the train to Bangor which has the best train service. For train times and route planning by train visit www.nationalrail.co.uk or phone 03457 48 49 50.
The 25 mile journey from Bangor railway station takes approximately 40 minutes. Pre-booked taxis cost approx £45 per taxi. Details of our current recommended taxi company and rates will be sent to you with your booking. The return taxi journey can be arranged on your behalf by the Craflwyn Hall Manager.
There is a limited bus service which runs past Craflwyn Hall. Any bus route that goes between Beddgelert and Pen-y-Gwryd will pass the end of the drive of Craflwyn Hall. For bus times see www.traveline.info
For a lovely drive through the Welsh countryside, head towards Betws-y-Coed. In Betws-y-Coed take the A5, heading towards Bangor, as far as Capel Curig, then turn left onto the A4086. After a further 4 miles bear left onto the A498 at the Pen-y-Gwyrd Hotel; this road follows the Glaslyn Valley passing two large lakes. The entrance to Craflwyn Hall is on the right hand side of the road, approximately 1 mile after the second lake. Look out for the brown National Trust sign.
Travelling from overseas
Manchester Airport has the quickest onward connections to Bangor. Trains from the airport take 3 hours, with one change at Crewe or Chester. See www.nationalrail.co.uk for train times.
Flying to London Heathrow airport is another option, but has a longer onward train journey - allow at least 4½ hours to reach Bangor by train. You'll need to head to Euston station in the centre of London, from where there are direct trains to Bangor. See www.nationalrail.co.uk for train times.
In each case complete your journey to Craflwyn Hall by taxi (see above).
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