CARDIGAN/ABERTEIFI TO MWNT 10 KM / 3½ HOURS
This is a 10 km route that takes you along the estuary of the river Teifi from Cardigan town centre to the coastal resort at Gwbert. After an initial section across farmland, the route follows the road into Gwbert. Despite being on a road, there are great views across the estuary to St. Dogmaels/Llandudoch and later Poppit Sands. After passing Gwbert you head across fields to walk along a cliff path all the way to Mwnt. If you are lucky you may catch sight of seals or dolphins along the way. The fields beyond the cliffs are full of wild flowers in summer and there is an abundance of wildlife along this stretch of coastline. The closer you come to Mwnt the steeper the cliffs become and there are waterfalls to navigate along the way. Take good care when you are near the cliff edge and if you’re walking solo, make sure someone knows where you are and what time you are expected back.
Cardigan/Aberteifi is lovely market town in West Wales. We stayed at Granary Lofts, a self catering holiday let owned and operated by Fforest. We ate out at the quirky and really well run Pizzatipi which is also operated by Fforest. See their website coldatnight.co.uk for more information about the town and its various amenities. Note that even in peak season not all amenities and attractions are open daily.
Gwbert is a coastal village on the Teifi estuary somewhat sandwiched between the Cardigan golf course and the Cliff Hotel. It was fairly quiet when we were there and had a bit of a feeling of being a ghost town but it does have spectacular views across to Poppit Sands and Cardigan Island. It is possible to make a short diversion at Gwbert to get a closer view of Cardigan Island. If you take this diversion you will have to retrace your steps as the public footpath does not go all the way along the coast here.
Mwnt is a stunningly beautiful, sandy cove surrounded on three sides by steep cliffs. At the top of the cliffs there is a National Trust car park that does get very busy in peak season. Mwnt is an ancient holy site with a very distinctive conical shaped hill (Foel y Mwnt) protruding out into the sea. You can walk all the way around this hill on a narrow footpath, if you have a good head for heights. There is also a little white 14th century church just beside the hill which you can also visit. Beyond the beach is a large caravan park and in peak season you can find and small shop and selling ice creams at the top of the steps that lead down to the beach.
Best way to tackle it
I walked solo from Cardigan and was met in Mwnt by Andy who had driven there in the car. The drive to Mwnt from Cardigan takes you down some narrow lanes. Be prepared for a slow journey in peak season, or leave the car behind and make a whole day hike by retracing your steps back to Cardigan. It is definitely a pretty enough route to warrant doing it twice.
- Start at the Quay Street Car Park and, keeping the river on your left walk away from the town, following the river and signs for the Wales Coast Path. After 500 m, turn right, away from the river, to continue following the Wales Coast Path. At the T-junction turn right onto Old Castle Road and after 250 m follow the Coast Path away from the road and across fields towards Gwbert.
- Follow the Wales Coast Path parallel to the estuary for 2 km until you reach the Gwbert Road.
- Turn left and follow the road for a further 2 km all the way to Gwbert. When you reach the entrance to the Cliff Hotel & Spa follow the road around to the right as it climbs steadily away from the estuary.
Diversion: If you would like to take a diversion to follow a cliff path for good views of Cardigan Island, follow the footpath signs into the Cliff Hotel & Spa grounds, around the main building and out towards the cliffs. You can walk along the estuary here for about 1 km. Take in the views of Cardigan Island and then retrace your steps out of the hotel grounds and back to the road.
- After 800m take the footpath on the left to head across fields to towards the sea. The walk across the fields is around 1 km and as you make your way towards the sea you will have good views of Cardigan Island away to your left. When you reach the sea you are around 3 km from Mwnt and as you make your way along the cliff path you will start to see the conical hill Foel y Mwnt in the distance ahead of you.
- When you arrive in Mwnt spend some time exploring the stunning beach as well as Foel y Mwnt and the little church of The Holy Cross before making your way back to Cardigan.