Tal y Cafn Station
Roman Country Walk

A superb, traditional, country walk, leading across classic Welsh wood and farmland with sweeping views over the river and the bonus of the ancient church of St. Mary by the site of a Roman fort.

Leave the station opposite the Post Office and passing over the level crossing walk towards the river bridge. Wide views open up on both sides, left up towards Llanrwst with the northern flanks of the Carneddi Mountains and downstream towards Conwy, its castle and Bodnant Gardens just up the hill to the right.

Passing by the duck and swans feeding in the reedbeds continue to the road junction and turn left towards a footpath sign pointing left again along a clear country track.

Continue along the river bank and swing towards the right up to the farmhouse where a green gate 1 on the left leads through the farmyard past a waymark. The next waymark points right through a huge open barn and the path now leads on to open farmland and extensive views across the Conwy. Through the green farm gate 2 past a waymark and on alongside the fence towards the woodland to reach stile 3.

The route now leads through mature broadleaf trees on a clear woodland path, thickly carpeted with beech nuts in April. Exit the wood after a slight rise via the stile 4 and walk over flat grassland towards the church clearly seen on the skyline straight ahead. Proceed through gate 5, noting the very old Yew tree perched up on the right, and walk on to gate 6 beside the 13thC Church of St. Mary, Caerhun, and the site of the auxiliary Roman fort of Canovium dating from AD80. The church is well worth visiting.

The road now swings round to the right to join the B5106, giving glimpses on the way of the Manor of Caerhun. Here turn right and after a short stretch take the left junction to Pontwgan.

This is a delightful country lane with old hedgerows and drystone walls along each side with good views onto the Carneddi and ahead to Rowen and the Roman Road. Pass a righthand junction and continue into the village and opposite the bus stop, at a left junction, a footpath sign points right to a green gate 7 between barns, on through another gate 8 to swing round to the right.

The path now passes between hedges and onto a clear passage just ahead on the skyline. Bear left to cross the field to stile 9, and over across another short field to a green and yellow stile 10 in the corner where a metal ladder fence 11 is crossed to emerge onto open grassland.

Good views are to be had in all directions with this slight gain of height. Here, pass by a white house and a waymark, on through a white gate 12 and bearing left continue on to stile 13 over the field and arriving at farmgate 14 and a footpath sign pass onto the country lane. Turn left here and a short distance further; right, onto a signposted track leading between two houses, walk through gates 15 & 16, broadly sweeping left, to cross the fields to our last farmgate 17 on the border with the main village road.

A right turn here leads up to the village of Tyn y Groes and down to the crossroads of the B5106 by the Red Lion Hotel, the route ahead, marked by a rail sign, leads straight over the crossroads and continues along a winding country road edged with wild hop and honeysuckle to end directly back at Tal y Cafn Station and the Tal y Cafn Hotel.

Conwy Valley Rail Initiative 2001