Walking in Glamorgan, South Wales. Guided walks, routes &
Webmaster, Angus McDonald
Last updated 27.1.03
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Ewenny Short and Long Walks
Both walks start from Ewenny Priory, the shorter walk is 4 miles, 6 kms and the longer one 11.6 miles, 18.7 kms. The short walk passes no toilets or refreshments, the longer walk has toilets at Dunraven Bay (and refreshments in season) and passes the Farmers Arms Pub at St Brides and Tea Room at West Farm in season. Roosters Tea Rooms has also just opened opposite the Farmers Arms. The short walk is easy, around 70% on country lanes. The going on the long walk is easy, moderate in places, with splendid viewpoints and incorporates downs, cliff-top, beach, woods and meandering brooks. The long walk also goes through Coed y Bwl nature reserve, featured in the Wick walk with its ‘wild’ daffodils. Park opposite Ewenny Priory.
Start at Grid Ref. SS 91167/77848, OS Explorer map 151.
For a map showing how to get to the start click here
The car park at the start by Ewenny Priory. Head this way for the long walk, behind the camera for the short walk.
With your back to Ewenny Priory go to the right, passing the church and then farm buildings. Just before you get to a house on the right look to the left where you will see a metal bridge going across the river Ewenny – this is the second bridge you will have passed since starting. After the bridge take the path to the left, away from the river, heading across the meadow. Cross a second bridge heading towards a large electricity pylon. Cross a third bridge and then go through a kissing gate. When you get to a country lane turn left and head down this lane, past Heronston Hall on your right for about 15 minutes. (25 mins)
The metal bridge leading into the meadow
When you get to a road junction turn left going along the pavement, recross the Ewenny River and immediately turn left down Wick Road. After 40 yards turn left down Abbey Road signposted ‘Historic Priory Church 12th Century’. After a while you get to a house on the left, Lower House, opposite which is a lane, Tingle Lane. Turn right up this lane heading gently uphill. At the road junction turn left, cross the road when convenient and head along this road passing Ewenny Village Community Hall on your right. On your left is a wood. Where the wood ends you will see the first building, the white Ty Capel, which has a footpath alongside it. Opposite this, on your side of the road is a concealed stone stile to the right. If you get to Parklands Lane you have gone too far. Cross the stile and head gently uphill between houses. Cross the road and keep heading up the path to a metal kissing gate. Go through this on to the grass and keep ahead with fields on either side. Go through a second metal kissing gate and keep going in a straight line across the fields heading up. You reach the corner of a field, keep ahead with the remains of a hedge on your left. Look back occasionally to take in the views. Cross a stone stile to the right of a rusty metal gate which takes you on to a lane. (1 hr 5 mins).
Turn left down the lane and just before you get to the house on the left look for the footpath sign off to the left opposite the road junction on the right. Go through the metal gate, follow the garden wall and then turn left so that you are going along the right-hand edge of the field you were in, heading gently uphill. Crest the hill with extensive, if somewhat industrial, views ahead. Go through the gap in the hedge ahead and immediately turn right keeping the hedge on your right. Follow the edge of the field as it curves to the left, passing the farm buildings on your right. Just before you get to a metal gate on the right take the wooden stile on the right and turn left down the lane which descends steadily. The lane eventually meets a road – Nant Lais – at which point turn right and then immediately left to head down the main road. Just by this junction is the Baptismal pond. (1 hr 35 mins).
Cross the road and take the pavement down the right-hand side, heading towards a large clump of trees on the right. Just past the last building on the right – Ty Capel – take the footpath to the right over a stone stile. Head down the clear path with the high stone wall and trees on your left. Cross a bridge over a small stream and then another stone stile. The path then runs alongside an open field on your right. Where the path meets a rough road with a house on your left follow the road round to the left following the direction of the waymark. The road passes the church by the Priory and brings you back to your start point. (1 hrs 50 mins).
The church alongside Ewenny Priory
With your back to Ewenny Priory go left, walking back down the road you have driven down. You pass Tingle Lane on your left - keep straight ahead. Shortly the road runs alongside the Ewenny River on your right and then you pass the Old Mill. When you get to a road junction turn right and pass the craft centre on your left. Then go left following the direction on the road sign – St Brides Road. Keep on the pavement on the left of the road. Go past the Ewenny Quarry entrance taking care when you cross the bridge. We lose the pavement here so take care walking on this road – there is a narrow grass verge for a few minutes but then you have to walk on the road. The road descends, pass over a cattle grid and later as the road curves to the right the landscape opens up (30 mins).
"the landscape open up...", our valley is top right.
When the road curves to the left look across the road where you will see a green path heading off diagonally to the right towards a valley – it is just past the last of a series of black and white posts by the side of the road (SS 89700/76218). Cross the road and take the path which becomes stony and curves to the right up the valley. Ascend and at the top look back to take in the views. Keep going until you see the wire fence of the quarry ahead of you. Go to the right and skirt the perimeter of the quarry keeping the wire fence on your left. After a while you come to a path crossing at right-angles and with telegraph poles above you. Follow this path to the left following the poles and with the fence still on your left. After a few hundred yards you see a grass path heading off to the right and if you look in its direction you will see a tall wire fence on the horizon. This path is opposite the third telegraph pole inside the fence as you look behind you (45 mins, 2.44 miles, SS 89106/76019).
From the top of the valley, looking back down
Take this path and keep straight ahead until you get to the corner of a field. Keep ahead with the wire fence of this field on your right. The path crests the hill - look back at the panoramic views - and then starts to descend. You will see some houses in the distance which we are heading for. After a while the path is bounded on both sides by wire fences. Aim for the junction of the roads ahead (1 hr, 3.27 miles, SS 88226/75139)
"You will see some houses in the distance..."
At the road junction go down the road signposted to Southerndown. Just past Groes Farm on your left you come to a road junction. Go straight ahead on to a path following the blue bridleway sign opposite and pass a barn on your left with a sign ‘W H Smith of Whitchurch’ on it. After about 75 yards the path forks to the left. Go through a metal gate and follow the path down to a road by a cattle grid. Turn right along the road for a short distance until you see a grassy area on the left of the road. Cross the road onto the grassy area just past a yellow waymark sign and then aim towards the sea between two walls where you will see some concrete posts (1 hr 15 mins, 4.19 miles, SS 87661/73907). (At this point if you carry on down the road a short way you get to the Tea Room at West Farm). Go through the posts and head to the left along the cliff with the sea on your right and stone wall on left. Where the stone wall curves sharply to the left keep straight ahead aiming for a stile in the corner of a car park – there is a metal kissing gate a bit further on as an alternative.
Alongside the stone wall before dropping down to Dunraven Bay
Go over the stile and head diagonally across the car park aiming for a gap in the wall alongside the road. Go through the gap and head downhill alongside the road to descend to Dunraven Bay. When you get to the car park by the beach our route goes to the left but if you go straight ahead to the walled gardens of Dunraven House you will find this a good spot for a break – see also the Wick walk for pictures of the house as it used to be. From the car park head up the road signposted Information Shop with your back to the sea (1 hr 35 mins, 5.06 miles, SS 88686/73233).
The descent to Dunraven, the beach to the right and the gardens of Dunraven House in the distance
Pass the Heritage Coast Centre – worth visiting if open – then stay on the grass with the stone wall on your right heading for a wooden gate and stile alongside. Go over the stile and head up a stony path on the edge of the trees. After a while the path curves to the left by a short yellow waymark post. Head up through the trees to a stile and then go ahead along the left-hand boundary of the field. By some metal gates go over a wooden stile on your left (note, the wooden stile had disappeared in January 2003) and then immediately to the right over a stone stile. Keep to the right-hand edge of this field and cross a wooden stile. The right of way then goes along the left-hand edge of the field although the sheep or cattle have marked out a path through the middle of the field. At the top left-hand corner you cross another wooden stile. Carry on along the left-hand edge of the field and just before you get to the end of the field take a stone stile in the hedge on your left. After this stile go diagonally to the right keeping the farm buildings on your left and aim for the left-hand edge of a stone wall around the garden of a house. As you get close to the wall you will see the stone stile ahead in a gap. Cross the stile and head left along the grass towards the pond with the Farmers Arms on your right (1 hr 50 mins, 6.15 miles, SS 89603/74393). Go along the pavement at the side of the road, past the pond and a rookery and then The Old Vicarage on your left. Just past this house and before the main road curves to the right take the lane on the other side of the road, Penylan Road, which curves gently uphill. Keep along this lane until you get to a road junction with a metal kissing gate ahead. (2 hrs)
Go through this gate and descend and then ascend keeping in the same direction. You join a rough road which is the access to a solitary house, Brynawel, on your right. Go past this house keeping a stone wall on your right. As you ascend, if you look to the left you will see the quarry which we passed earlier. The path reaches the crest of the hill and then curving to the right starts to descend – you still have the stone wall on your right. After a few hundred yards you pass one waymark post on your right. Keep ahead to the next waymark post 100 yards beyond this (2 hrs 20 mins, 7.51 miles, SS 90561/75635). Turn left here following the footpath direction through the gorse eventually curving right and then left and starting to descend with coppiced trees on your left. There are good views to the left looking down on the meandering Alun stream. (2 hrs 30 mins).
Looking down onto the Afon Alun.
Keep descending, steeply at times, as the path curves to the left and then drops down to a rough metalled road. Turn right heading for a large and a small metal gate. Go through gate, turn right to go through the railway arch and keep going along the rough road until it meets a metalled road with a ford on your left. Turn right and head along this road with the Alun brook on your left. Pass Glan Alun cottage, go through another railway arch and as the road curves to the left look out for the stone pack-horse bridge across the steam on your left (2 hrs 38 mine, 8.23 miles, SS 90976/75077). On your right is the Coed-y-Bwl nature reserve. Go across the bridge and take the central path following the direction of a yellow waymark sign on a tree up to a wooden stile on the edge of a field. Go diagonally left across the field aiming for another wooden stile. Go over this stile and then cross the railway line ahead, taking care to look out for trains and aim for a metal sign on the far side. The path crosses an old wooden stile and then heads up into the trees.
The path through the woods in April, carpeted with wood anemone.
Ascend until you get to a stile by a wooden gate. Go over the stile and head diagonally left towards a stone stile, where there is a yellow waymark in the wall. Keep in this direction and shortly you see another yellow waymark sign by a metal gate pointing ahead. Go in this direction; the route joins a rough track but where this track curves to the left keep ahead over a wooden stile. Look ahead towards the prominently-painted farm buildings on the right-hand edge of which you will see a wooden stile, shortly followed by another. Take these stiles which bring you onto a road. Turn left down this road for 40 yards then right down the road signposted to Llampha. After a few hundred yards the road curves to the right just past a wooden gate on your left and at this point take the old tree-lined trackway to your left (2 hrs 50, 8.89 miles). After a while the path descends until you can see the road again to the left. Turn right at this point following the Public Bridleway sign and keep to the right-hand edge of the field.
The path goes into the trees – it can be a little muddy here – and then emerges to run down the right-hand edge of a field. You will see a rusty barn to the left. Go through a dilapidated metal gate onto a road. Turn right down the road and just before you get to the house on the left look for the footpath sign off to the left opposite the road junction on the right (3 hrs 5 mins, 9.73 miles, SS 92194/76188) Go through the metal gate, follow the garden wall and then turn left so that you are going down the right-hand edge of the field you were in, heading gently uphill. Crest the hill with extensive, if somewhat industrial, views ahead. Go through the gap in the hedge ahead and immediately turn right keeping the hedge on your right. Follow the edge of the field as it curves to the left, passing the farm buildings on your right. Just before you get to a metal gate on the right take the wooden stile on the right (SS 92358/76790) and turn left down the lane which descends steadily. The lane eventually meets a road – Nant Lais – at which point turn right and then immediately left to head down the main road. Just by this junction is the Baptismal pond.
Cross the road and take the pavement down the right-hand side, heading towards a large clump of trees on the right. Just past the last building on the right – Ty Capel – take the footpath to the right over a stone stile (3 hrs 30 mins, 11.1 miles, SS 91659/77371). Head down the clear path with the high stone wall and trees on your left. Cross a bridge over a small stream and then another stone stile. The path then runs alongside an open field on your right. Where the path meets a rough road with a house on your left follow the road round to the left following the direction of the waymark. The road passes the church by the Priory and brings you back to your start point. (3 hrs 40 mins, 11.6 miles).
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