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The Teifi Valley Trail

The Teifi Valley Trail, West Wales, is an ambitious venture that will provide a new walking route of about 75 miles along public rights of way through some of the finest scenery in Mid Wales. It is being devised, prepared, managed, administered, and maintained entirely by groups of volunteers from the Walkers are Welcome communities in the valley :  Tregaron ; Lampeter (Llanbedr Pon Steffan)Llandysul & Pont-TywelCilgerrantpsSt Dogmaels. 

For walkers going  South from the source of the Afon Teifi, the first possibility for provisions will be Tregaron. This ancient market town is steeped in history, legend, and folklore. Its varied pubs, cafes and shops  provide ample facilities for visitors and for the local and rural community. Sitting astride the Afon Brennig, a major tributary of the Afon Teifi, Tregaron serves as a gateway to the many upland attractions of the central Cambrian Mountains, and as a crossroads between the hills and the coast.

Larger communities will be encountered as walkers continue. The route through the major townships of Lampeter, Llandysul, Newcastle Emlyn, and finally Cardigan is punctuated by smaller communities where provisions  may also be obtained. History, dramatic rural scenery and abundant wildlife are constant companions throughout. The northern end of the trail is located in the wide open spaces at the source of the River Teifi in the gloriously dramatic uplands of the Cambrian Mountains.  The trail pursues a route that embraces ever changing vistas of mountain, wetland, woodland and agricultural landscapes in addition to pool and plunge, torrent and waterfall, gorge and water meadow, all of the features associated with a major waterway. The river finally escapes the confines of its valley as it discharges into the Irish Sea at Aberteifi (Cardigan). Here, the trail terminates at Poppit Sands.

Having finished the Teifi Trail,  walkers may continue in a southerly direction along the dramatic Pembrokeshire Coast Path, or head northward along the equally scenic Ceredigion Coast Path to Borth. From here, the easterly Devil’s Bridge and Pontrhydfendigaid Trail will permit a dramatic return to the mountains and the source of the Teifi.  This latter trail embraces lowland scenery before ascending through former industrial landscapes, river valley and mountain flank before entering the truly dramatic Rheidol Gorge. The entire extended route embraces a complete circumnavigation of Ceredigion. Is this the only county in Britain that can make such a boast?

During recent months, hard work and dedication have allowed good progress towards completion of the Teifi Trail, and an inauguration event is presently anticipated for  early autumn 2024, .  However, this can only be realised when public safety at every step has been assured. The managing association remains desperately short of funds, and many artefacts and facilities require repair or replacement. With some provisional help from the local authorities, the teams of volunteers continue to construct bridges, erect fences, stiles and gates, clear fallen trees and overgrowth, install directional way-markers, and conduct essential liaison with farmers and landowners. At just a few locations route deviation has become a necessity and is an expensive and time consuming procedure. We continue to apply for grants in the hope that this provision will prove sufficient for the public safe completion and our aspired opening.

Two Walking Festivals in celebration of the Teifi Valley are being prepared and will take place in Llandysul the weekend of 20-22 September and at Strata Florida Abbey on the weekend of 27-29 September. Both will further highlight the scenic beauty, the industry, and the diversity of the County of Ceredigion and the many and varied opportunities for outdoor and countryside activities. Both events will include programmes of walks for all ages and abilities from full-day and half-day hikes in the localities, to local rambles in pursuit of the considerable local historic interest, and more entertaining provision for a younger generation. Both locations enjoy a huge diversity of scenery, habitat, wildlife, history, archaeology, and the intended programme of events and opportunities will provide for all tastes and interests.

Please sign up for the Teifi Valley Trail newsletter,  here  teifivalleytrail.wales  where there are also introductory videos and  links to the  Facebook page .

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