Castell Darndochan Afon Lliw Round

Watch the video of this walk

Pont Dolhendre set in the Snowdonia National Park and close to the southern end of Bala Lake is a very pretty small farming community with the River (Afon) Lliw flowing through it. The scenery is wonderful with Castell Carndochan taking pride of place. Don’t forget your camera. Dolhendre Caravan Park is close by set in the peaceful wooded valley on the banks of the River Lliw. This is an ideal place for relaxing and getting away from it all.

Castell Carndochan is a ruined mediaeval Welsh castle possibly built in the early 13th century with a round tower at the northern end, a D-shaped one to the southern end and in between was rectangular buildings. There are steep crags on three sides and then rough upland and then crags to the south west putting this castle in a strong defensive position. In 1863 gold was discovered at the base of the castle even though the hillside was scattered with quartz boulders. The area was mined between 1864 and 1866 and then yields declined it was sold in 1876 following a wind up order. In later years the mine was worked again on a small scale, some lead was also produced, until 1905 and was the 4th most productive of the Merioneth gold mines.

We park near the telephone box and then walk over bridge turn right and walk up the road. Just before a footbridge where the road turns right we take the first gate on the left. We go uphill following the path which turns right and then left and then over rough upland towards the castle. We spend some time here before retracing our steps back down to the gate. At the gate we turn left and go over the footbridge and into the wood. We then take the track on the right and follow this turning left at the end of the wood and then right over a ford. We then come to a farm and keeping to the right of the farm we head straight forward to two gates we take the small one on the left cross over the field diagonally to the corner and through another gate. We go through the gate and head straight forward with the fence on our right. At the end of the fence we make our way down to a footbridge over the river and then turn left to the road. At the road we turn left and follow this going through a farm. A short way after the farm we go through a gate on the left and head towards the waterfall. We spend some time here watching for wildlife. We then retrace our steps back to the farm. We now follow the road; this is a gated road so is very quiet, back to Pont Dolhendre.


Some steep inclines and declines.


Approx 5.25 miles using OS map OL 18


Pont Dolhendre, near Llanuwchllyn, Gwynedd, North Wales.


From Bala take the A494 to Llanuwchllyn. Before Llanuwchllyn take the road on the right just before the bridge, sign posted Trawsfynydd, after about 1.5 miles you will come to a bridge and telephone box at Pont Dolhendre.

Car Parking

At the little bridge or at the road side at Pont Dolhendre. There is limited parking.

Toilets and Refreshments

Nearest public toilets are at Llanuwchllyn, 2 miles away, and there are also toilets in Bala, 6.75 miles away.
For refreshments there is a pub and shop in Llanuwchllyn and plenty of pubs, cafes and shops in Bala.

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