Distance: 9 miles (15km) one way
Grade: Accessible Walk
Starting /Finish: Dolgellau (SH 725 175) or Barmouth (SH 615 155)
(It is possible to join the Mawddach Trail at various points between Dolgellau and Barmouth.)
Relevant map: Ordnance Survey Explorer 0L 23 (Cadair Idris & Llyn Tegid)
What is special about this trail?
This trail is located in the south of Snowdonia National Park and is considered to be one of the best trails in Britain, for cyclists as well as walkers. It follows the beautiful Mawddach estuary, giving visitors the chance to experience some of Snowdonia’s splendour, striking scenery and beautiful wildlife. The trail stretches for nine miles between Dolgellau and Barmouth and can be joined at several points, including Morfa Mawddach and Penmaenpool (see map).
Mawddach trail follows the track bed of the old railway line from Barmouth to Ruabon. The line was opened in 1865 and proved to be very popular with visitors. The line was also used briefly to carry slate. As cars became more popular, the line became less cost-effective and was closed in 1965.
The trail follows the river Mawddach which has been designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest and a Special Area of Conservation because of the salt marsh and lowland peat habitats.
The Mawddach Trail is clearly marked and can be easily followed. You can join the trail from any of the following locations where there are car parks:
• Y Marian, Dolgellau
• Pont y Wernddu
• Morfa Mawddach
Look out for any sand blown onto the path after passing over Barmouth Bridge, although the wooden bridge itself is flat and wide.
Between Dolgellau and Morfa Mawddach, the trail is owned by the National Park Authority and for most of its length reaches a 3 metre width.
• There are accessible toilets Dolgellau, Penmaenpool, Morfa Mawddach and Barmouth.
• There are several accessible benches and picnic tables along the path.
• The wide gates are accessible for wheelchairs, pushbikes and pushchairs