The North Wales Castles Trail[ISBN: 978 1 908748 56 0]

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The North Wales Castles Trail[ISBN: 978 1 908748 56 0]

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This walkers journey explores the richness of the North Wales landscape, from rural Chirk to the mighty fortresses of Harlech and Caernarfon, exploring desolate uplands, visiting busy market towns, discovering secret woodlands, strolling along a promenade, climbing over the might of Snowdon itself (or bypassing it), walking by the sea, crossing the Menai bridge, tracking disused railway lines, and visiting these ancient fortifications, relics of old struggles and disputed ownership: Flint, Denbigh, Conwy, Criccieth, now memorable silhouettes on a stunning vista to inspire, invigorate and lift your spirits.

The castles (or castle sites) visited are: Chirk, Castell Dinas Bran, Caergwrle, Hawarden, Ewloe, Flint, Mold, Ruthin, Denbigh, Bodelwyddan, Rhuddlan, Gwrych, Conwy, Abergwyngregyn, Penrhyn, Beaumaris, Dolbadarn, Dolwyddelan, Castell Tomen y Mur, Harlech, Criccieth & Caernarfon.

There are 20 walks in this book, each manageable in a day, with 15 miles being the optimum distance. The total walk is 235 miles long. You might want to run some of them together, Hawarden, Ewloe, Flint, for example make a good combination, or pick and mix, depending when and where you are in the area. There is no necessity to do them in any particular order. This trai is not a recognised national footpath, although it covers some ground already well-defined by long-distance walks such as Offas Dyke, the Wales Coast Path, the North Wales Path and others.

All the walks follow accepted footpaths and public rights of way, with some notable exceptions. It takes you through some rough country, as you might expect of North Wales. Although some of the castles are on the coast, Flint, Conwy, Criccieth for example, land can rise quite steeply as you move inland. Once you reach Snowdonia, inevitably, gradients can be sharp, and severe. As well as anticipating the sheer steepness of the climb, do be prepared for the effect a gradient can have on speed. What may seem to be a short distance on the map, can take much longer to cover when climbing.

Unlike most long-distance trails, this one, being newly invented, is not signposted as such. There are numerous waymarks, fingerposts, and direction indicators, but expect to find yourself sometimes on the Offas Dyke Path, or the North Wales Path, or the Wales Coast Path or one of the others. What you can expect is an exciting and rewarding exploration of some of the finest landscapes and buildings in North Wales.
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