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  In a Victorian Poets Footsteps

Hills and vales at the heart of North Wales

“Lovely the woods, waters, meadows, coombes, vales, All the air things that build this world of Wales ”. So wrote the renowned Victorian poet Gerard Manley Hopkins, who spent much time in this area and dedicated a poem “In the Valley of the Elwy” to the river. The Afon Elwy is one of the most beautiful small rivers in the whole of Wales ; its valley a paradise of tranquil meadows, ancient woods and craggy hills.

This walk encounters all of these aspects and starts from the peaceful settlement of Llanfair Talhaiarn, huddled beside an ancient bridge over the river. There's an interesting interpretation board in the car park here; remains of the local lead mines are hard to find. Along the way you may encounter some of Britain 's most elusive wildlife, including red buzzards are a constant companion.

Return to Route

DISTANCE : 7 miles (12.5 km)
TIME: Allow 4 hours
TERRAIN: riverside, farm paths, mostly back lanes. One long climb.
PARKING: Car park in the village
REFRESHMENTS: pubs, garage and shop in the village.
PUBLIC TRANSPORT: Infrequent buses from Abergele.
PUBLIC CONVENIENCES: At the car park
O.S. DETAILS: Explorer 264, vale of Clwyd. Start at the village car park in Llanfair Talhaiarn
GRID REF: SH 927703



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