is it? : Colwyn Bay, North Wales. Allow : 3 hours, Distance 5.6 miles
/ 9 km What's the attraction? : Bluebell woods (seasonal); peaceful
hidden valley walk;
"Cathedral of the hills" ; buzzards. Rating : This is an easy walk. Car Parking : Available in Eirias Park, A547 Abergele Road, Colwyn
Directions : [ Map
of Nant-y-Glyn Valley Walk location ]
From Chester take the A55 to Colwyn Bay. Exit the expressway at junction
22, Old Colwyn. Continue to Marine roundabout. Take the A547 west to Colwyn
Bay. Eirias park is 1/2 mile on right.
View some of the highlights
of the walk on the youtube video player. The pics were
taken in sequence.
Scroll down the page
for further information and pictures of this walk.
Eirias Park via the ornamental gates. Cross over Abergele Road and
climb the set of steps that are to the right of the house that is situated
on the corner of Abergele Road and Groes Road. Follow the path for some
half a mile. This part of the walk is not very attractive but it is
necessary to get to our secret valley. The path passes between a builder's
yard and the local Welsh primary school, Bod Alaw.
On leaving this section of path the outlook soon improves and enters
a small housing estate, persevere for the 100 yards through the estate
toward the stone cottages located at the road junction. Turn right
at the road junction and walk up a slight incline past the farm buildings.
A nice rural aspect opens before you. Choose the path sign-posted "Nant
y Glyn Valley". This section of path is enclosed with over hanging
trees but you will see Blackberry Mountain on your left (when snow
falls this is the local children's favourite spot for sledging). Continue
on this path until you reach the way markers by a broken gate. Follow
the path signposted "Tyn Terfyn". Come autumn the trees along
this section of path are heavy with hazel nuts and the squirrels are
all year long. The track opens out onto a hillside field, the track
disappears for a short distance but the trick is to stay close to the
gorse bushes as you climb the hill. Soon the track reappears, follow
this to the top of the hill, ...well, as far up the hill as the kissing
gate. You will find the kissing gate in the hedgerow on the right forming
the boundary to the next smallholding, Tyn Terfyn.
Pass through the gate to Tyn Terfyn's top field. To the left of the
gate you will see an overgrown well / spring that was the sole water
supply to the household in the bottom of the valley until some thirty
years ago. (The small-holding with some eight acres of land was owned
by my uncle and aunty and in my youth I spent many pleasant summers
playing in the fields and helping out on the farm) Continue across the
field to a stile. This leads into a small copse where you will find the
remains of an old cottage, more a pile of stone than a cottage these
days. Pass through the trees to the lane. Cross the lane and follow the
directions on the way-marker over another stile. Recent improvements
to the track have changed a scramble down the bank to a number of steps
and a small wooden bridge which lead to the next section of the walk.
Follow the way-markers, which basically direct the path along the lower
edge of a pine forest through the valley to the road at the head of the
In the spring the forest floor is covered with a carpet of bluebells,
and you have a choice of pastoral scenes in the valley below or the bluebells
in the dappled sunlight in the forest above.
On leaving the forest track turn right along the B5381 road. Follow the
road for a few hundred yards to the junction with the B5113 Llanrwst -
Colwyn Bay road. Turn right again heading down hill and toward the village
of Bryn y Maen. To your right you will have spectacular views of the Nant-y-Glyn
Valley with the Irish Sea as a distant backdrop, and to your left you
will see the beautiful foothills of Snowdonia.
On reaching the village of Bryn y Maen you will see the church
known as the Cathedral of the Hills.
past the church, taking the second road on the right hand side. This
takes you back into the valley but on the tarmac (albeit narrow) road
on the western side of the valley. Be prepared for breathtaking views
on the descent into the valley, and some wonderful ancient oak
trees helping to frame a perfect picture.
The road is steep going down and steep going up but neither up nor down
are too unpleasant when your mind is on the delightful countryside around
you. In the heart of this hidden valley you are within a mile or two of
the busy town of Colwyn Bay yet all you will here are the sounds of sheep
and cows and maybe the cry of the buzzards hovering in the thermals above
As you exit the valley the road makes one last attempt to puff you out,
but although it's steep it's also short and it's soon downhill walking
again with the trees of Pwllychrochan Woods closing in on the road.
To your right is the chalet park of Nant y Glyn Hall and soon you arrive
at the junction with the Old Highway. Bear right and walk straight down
hill. At the bottom of the hill bear left round the bend past the Old
Mill until you rejoin Abergele Road. Bear right again up hill to the starting
point at Eirias Park.