#WalkWednesday – Hafod Estate

The Cambrian Mountains is a wonderful area for walks but where do you start? For #WalkWednesday, grab your boots and get outside with this one in from Rebecca Cohen from Nanteos.  It’s not too challenging so there’s no excuse, be quick whilst it’s dry!

Rebecca Cohen ©

Rebecca Cohen ©

Distance: approximately 3 miles involving some bridges.

Grading: Moderate, some hill climbing. Walking boots advised.

Sights: Hafod Country House Estate from the book ‘Peacocks in Paradise’ , mushrooms and funghi (which are in season), river and woodland

Time: approximately 2 hours with an opportunity for a picnic by the river and /or outside swimming.

Begin at The Miners Arms, Pontrhydygroes, with one mile drive to Hafod Church, with available parking.


Most of Johnes’s 3 million trees still stand from the 18 century in the Ystwyth valley ,although the Mansion with its Nash enlargement ,printing press, library and elegant furnishings were demolished post the second world war in 1950.
Thomas Johnes invested heavily in road making and advanced farming and horticultural methods.
Nearby lead mines in the Elan Valley have also ceased and landslides have reduced the nearby villages to the Estate to rubble.

Rebecca Cohen ©

Rebecca Cohen ©

The Powell family from Nanteos would undoubtedly have shared occasions with the Johnes, both also mixing with London society. It is very likely both estates would have supported the Goggerddan Hunt.

Today the history of this site is only part of the attraction. Rated by the AA in the 1990’s as the 10th most beautiful place in the world, this is one of the most romantic walks in Wales. Amongst moss covered stumps and branches of trees covered in ferns, mingle funghi and fauna of over 300 varieties, from mauve to bright orange.

Traditional toadstools sit amongst lichen covered branches where birds, lizards and dormice dart around .
This is truly a picture from a fairy tale.

For more ideas about what there is to see in the Cambrian Mountains, have a read about the Wildlife spotting.