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Trail Guide to Pistyll Rhaeadr Waterfall - One of the ‘Seven Wonders of Wales’

Embark on an enchanting adventure to discover the awe-inspiring beauty that is Pistyll Rhaeadr Waterfall. Pistyll Rhaeadr is regarded as one of the 'Seven Wonders of Wales', why? you ask! Well you'll just have to visit to find out! Situated in the Berwyn mountains in mid Wales, between Eryri National Park and the Welsh border near Oswestry, this majestic waterfall is a hidden gem that captivates visitors with its secluded location and dramatic natural beauty.

Pistyll Rhaeadr translates to English as "Spring of the Waterfall". It is formed by the Afon Disgynfa falling over 3 stages over a 73m cliff face into the Afon Rhaeadr below, with the highest section reaching around 40m. Although often mistakenly considered the tallest single-drop waterfall in Wales, that title belongs to the Devils Appendix located in Eryri's Ogwen Valley which has a free fall of 93m.

Pistyll Rhaeadr Trail Guide
Pistyll Rhaeadr

Trail Overview:

Route Length: 1.3 Miles / 2.2 Km (round trip)

Hike Duration: 1-2 hours

Elevation Gain: 90m

Route Difficulty: Easy (waterfall base) Moderate (full hike)

Cost: Free, parking charges apply

Facilities: Picnic area, public toilets cost 50p

Parking & Start Point:

What Three Words: ///

Cost: £5 all day at Tan y Pistyll tea room

• Free parking available just 100 yards away (however this tends to fill up rapidly. Caution: the ground is uneven and rocky, posing a risk of scratching vehicles that drive over the rocks. It's advisable to avoid this parking area unless you're driving a vehicle with good ground clearance. Do NOT park on grass verges.

Trail Guide: Begin your adventure at the car park, and from here, a short walk of around 200m leads you to the base of Pistyll Rhaeadr. Within minutes, you'll find yourself standing on the photogenic iron bridge, offering a stunning perspective of the cascading waters.

For a more detailed trail guide, consider using Komoot. The app provides a comprehensive map and navigation assistance for a seamless hiking experience. You can also download an offline map to access even without network.

Link to the full trail can be found HERE.

Optional Extra- Waterfall Crest Hike: After immersing yourself in the beauty at the base, I highly recommend taking the scenic route up to the lip of the waterfall. Follow the zig-zagging path, which should take approximately 20 minutes to climb. The journey to the top is well worth the effort, as it unveils an epic view down the waterfall and into the picturesque valley. As you ascend, not only will you be treated to panoramic vistas, but you'll also encounter several smaller falls and inviting plunge pools along the way.

Link to the full trail can be found HERE.

Pistyll Rhaeadr Trail Guide
Pistyll Rhaeadr pools

Views over the Berwyn Mountains from Pistyll Phaeadr
Views over the valley from the top of the waterfall


Can you swim at Pistyll Rhaeadr? While swimming is not recommended, you can enjoy the pools at the base for a refreshing experience. Consider the upper stretches for more secluded plunge pools.

Are dogs allowed? Yes, dogs on leads are welcome, but be cautious of livestock in the area and keep them on a lead.

Is the trail accessible? The main trail has steps and is rocky and uneven so is unsuitable for wheelchairs and prams, though is short so suitable for most. The extension may pose challenges for those with mobility limitations as there is a steep incline and is again rocky and uneven.

Other Things To Do In The Area:

Places To Stay:

Find places to stay near Pistyll Rhaeadr with TripAdvisor.

And there you have it, my Pistyll Rhaeadr trail guide!

Did this blog help you plan your Pistyll Rhaeadr adventure? Share your thoughts and tips in the comments below!

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Until next time, happy adventuring!

Janire xo

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Jan 17
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

Such a great guide! I must get to Pistyll Rhader it looks absolutely incredible 😍

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