where to walk, what to see, and where to stay in Wales

 Wales > Walks in Wales  >   A walk in Denbigh, through the town to the Castle, into the Vale of Clwyd and on to St Marcella's Church

Add to Favourites

Attractions nearby:

 

Click for Hotels  near by

Click for cottages near by

 

 

the hairy legged hiker walking in WalesWhere is it?  Denbigh in the Vale of Clwyd, Denbighshire, North Wales
How long will it take ? : 4.5 miles, 6 km. As much of the walk is through the town and there is quite a bit of site-seeing involved I would allow 3-4 hours, we took even longer.
What's the attraction? : A medieval market town, a Castle, pastoral views, an ancient Church
Essentials : Stout footwear. As always an OS map would be handy, but your not going to get lost in the hills without one!
Rating : Easy
Car Parking : Car Park at the top of Vale Street close to High Street. But we parked at the bottom of Vale Street on the A543 Rhyl Road, both to save a few bob and also to save walking uphill at the end of the walk..
Facilities : A wide selection of pubs, restaurants and cafes in the town. Toilets behind High Street.


Directions :   [ Map of Denbigh town, Castle, and country Walk location ]

From the A55 take the A525 south at junction 27. Follow the A525 through St Asaph to Denbigh. At the roundabout outside Denbigh take the A543 toward town centre.

Map opens in a new window

Lets Go !

We parked the car on the A543 Rhyl Road at the bottom of the hill that leads to the town centre.

Leave the car and walk toward the crossroads at the bottom of Vale Street where the A543 Rhyl Road meets  the Ruthin Road. The Railway Inn on the corner gives a clue to the origins of the redundant bridge like View of the Denbigh Castle from the beautiful Vale of Clwydstructure on the right hand side of the road. Yes, the railway once passed through Denbigh and the Vale of Clwyd.

Continue up Vale Street (Stryd y Dyffryn) to the town centre. There are a number of interesting houses along the road. Half way up the hill are the Evan Pierce memorial gardens. Evan Pierce must have been a much loved and respected member of the community as the unusually large memorial (a smaller version of Nelson's Column) was payed for by public subscription.

Carrying on up the hill we pass an eclectic mix of shops and a sandstone monument known as the Old High Cross before arriving at Hall Square.

Next we come to Denbigh Library, once the Market Hall, where the ground levels off at the entrance to High Street. Denbigh is a bustling little town with a good mix of pubs, offices, cafes, and quality shops and not a Mcdonalds in site! Alley ways and streets lead off in all directions, all inviting further exploration. Take time to stroll along the High Street, a proper old fashioned high street.

To continue the walk from High Street walk back to the Library, (Market Hall), and take the right hand fork immediately bearing right up Bull Lane. The lane bears right and then left, we then turn right into Denbigh Library building, the old market hallLeicester Terrace. Continue along Leicester Terrace to the Burgess Gate, or the "townsman's gate" . This massive stone gateway marked the entrance to the medieval walled town. It was one of the biggest walled gatehouses in Britain and was designed to impress and intimidate the Welsh people after King Edward I of England's army had occupied Wales in the 13th Century.

From the gatehouse bear left up Castle Hill passing St Hilary's Tower, the remains of the early 14th Century garrison chapel.

To your right stands the imposing Castle Gatehouse Towers with the headless statue of King Edward still lording it over the town. It is possible to enter the first sections of the Castle without charge as the ticket booth is deeper within the walls. A small fee is charged to enter the Castle keep but that might be for another day.

We bear to the left toward the trees at the edge of the green. Find the path and take the steps down into the woodlands turning right along the path. The verdant fields of the Vale of Clwyd are visible between the trees before the path eventually reaches Love Lane. Turn left along the road, B4501, until the fork in the road. Take the left hand fork, sign might say Llanrhaeadr.

Continue along the road with open countryside on both sides. To the right is the now redundant "Denbigh Loony Bin" (well that's what we called it) or to give it it's correct name the Denbigh Psychiatric Hospital, an impressive Victorian building soon to be "developed" into apartments and housing.

Follow the road as it starts to descend but you will come to a sharp bend on the hill. Look for the stile on your left and follow the waymarker through the trees. This is a narrow path and can be quite overgrown but there are a number of mature trees along the way. Continue along the path and it opens out into a field. Ignore the track to the left and continue close to the edge of the woodland. Cross the field to Ffordd Ystrad. We had our butties in the field across the road, by the bridge.

If you like the open countryside this is the best part of the walk. The lush pastureland of the Vale of Clwyd is evidenced by the herds of cattle and the ancient oak trees in abundance. To your left, high on the hill, are the walls of Denbigh Castle while to your right are the rolling hills of the Clwydian range.

To continue the walk bear left along Ffordd Ystrad until you see a stile on the right. Cross the stile into the field and follow the track across two fields heading toward the redundant railway bridge. The path runs beneath the bridge and alongside the river through the trees before reaching a road. Bear right along the road toward the Brooklands Pottery. On your right is the Afon Ystrad with an interesting set of water falls, fish ladders I think. Continuing down the lane we pass the Pottery on your right. Bearing left round the bend we pass some cottages before cutting through a tunnel below the A525 Ruthin Road.

The road bears right before passing by the Brooklands Restaurant. It is a lovely spot for some refreshments. We carry on the walk by turning left after the restaurant along the Hen Ffordd Rhuthun (Old Ruthin Road).

An unusually attractive Welsh Chapel comes into view on the bend in the road, plain but perfectly formed with a rustic brick facade. Cut through the chapel grounds, the path is to be found on the left hand side of the building. Cross the field keeping close to the hedge into the next field and continue on again staying close to the hedge. At the end of the second field the path narrows before reaching Ffordd Eglwyswen, (Church Road). Turn right and the entrance to the church is on your left.

The Church of St Marcella's is a lovely church with it's white painted tower highlighted against the green of the Vale of Clwyd for miles around. The famous Welsh poet Twm o'Nant, the Welsh Shakespeare, lies buried in the churchyard, or so I am told. We could not find his grave on the day we visited.

Our walk continued past the Sewage Farm but all we were rewarded with was a big pong and getting lost in fields full of nettles. So I will describe the alternative route.

From the church head back up Ffordd Eglwys as far as the roundabout on the A525. Go straight across the roundabout and follow the Ruthin Road. There are some nice houses along the way and on your left is Denbigh School. You will come out at the bottom of Vale Street close to the Railway Inn from where we started.

Please -- click on the pictures -- for enlarged pictures of the walk in Denbigh town, North Wales, UK.

Vale Street leading to Denbigh High Street Denbigh High Street
Vale Street leading to Denbigh High Street
 
Denbigh High Street
Being built on a hill for defensive purposes there are a number of steep streets in Denbigh   A view of St Marcella's Church, the old parish church of Denbigh
Being built on a hill for defensive purposes there are a number of steep streets in Denbigh town
 
A view of St Marcella's Church, the old parish church of Denbigh and  one of our destinations
Back streets and narrow lanes in the town centre Fine buildings in Denbigh
Back streets and narrow lanes in the town centre
 
An eclectic mix of buildings in Denbigh
We pass St Hilary's Chapel   The Gatehouse to Denbigh Castle
We pass St Hilary's Chapel on the way to the Castle
 
The Gatehouse to Denbigh Castle
Fine views of the Vale of Clwyd from within the castle walls The walk takes us past Denbigh Hospital
Fine views of the Vale of Clwyd from within the castle walls
 
The walk takes us past Denbigh Hospital, or Denbigh Loony Bin as we called it as children
The path leads through the lush green valley   A pastoral scene below the castle walls
The path leads through the lush green vale of Clwyd
 
A pastoral scene below the castle walls
A nice spot for a picnic beside the river The walk leads us past the Presbyterian Chapel
A nice spot for a picnic beside the river, and the cows like it too
 
The walk leads us past the Presbyterian Chapel
And on to St Marcella's Church   And finally Denbigh High School the most modern and also most ugly
And on to St Marcella's Church, the old parish church of Denbigh at Whitchurch
 
And finally Denbigh High School the most modern and also the most ugly of Denbigh's buildings

© All pictures copyright Bernard Wellings

.Home |
| Copyright ©   Bernard Wellings   2008
Wales tourist information Wales tourist attractions Holiday Cottages in Wales Hotels in Wales Bed and Breakfast in Wales Towns in Wales and the Welsh Borders, tourist information, pictures, and a bit of history A selection of Welsh historic sites