Walking in Glamorgan, South Wales. Guided walks, routes &
Webmaster, Angus McDonald
Last updated 28.9.05
Click on any image to enlarge it
Circular Walk from Nash Point to Monknash
Watercolour of the Old Forge at Monknash passed on this walk. Local artist, Peter Cronin, has painted many rural and coastal scenes both in South Wales and beyond and will do commissions. You can contact Peter on 01656 647182.
An easy, mostly level, circular walk of 5 miles, 8 kilometres, from Nash Point to Monknash and back along the coast. Includes two nature reserves and the ruined monastic grange of Monknash complete with columbarium. Refreshments in season at Nash Point and the Plough and Harrow pub is just over half way round. No toilets en route. Car Park charge in season.
OS Explorer Map 151, Start at grid ref 916683, Nash Point car park
For a map to get you to the start of the walk click here.
View from the Iron Age fort with car park to right of picture and looking towards Cwm Marcross
Aim for the small white building at the beginning on the Nash Point car park. Alongside this is a wooden barrier with a sign ‘Service Vehicles only’ and just beyond this an Information board giving some details on local features. Take the stony path here which descends into the valley heading away from the sea. At the bottom you come to a barely visible sign saying Nature Trail straight on and Coastal Path to the left. Go straight ahead towards the trees crossing a stream which we shall recross several times. There are stepping stones to assist crossing the stream or a wooden bridge some 30 yards to the left. Cross the stream a second time then follow the yellow waymark sign to the left. Cross stream for third time and then fourth. Down wooden steps and cross stream for fifth time. Path now ascends to continue through the nature reserve. Eventually you get to a fenced-off area with sign saying ‘Danger, Keep Out’. Drop down the steps to the right and over a wooden bridge. (12 mins).
Cross a concrete path keeping the stream on your left into a fairly rough field. Keep to the left of some recent mounds until you get nearly level with the first house with a wooden fence ahead. Look to your left where there is a stile on the edge of the trees. Cross the stream and then the stile. Turn right and head along the right-hand edge of the field. You pass Marcross Church to your right. Go through a metal gate alongside a broken-down stile. Keep alongside the field edge passing a cream-coloured house. Cross a wooden stile and then another in the top right-hand corner of the field, now going along the left-hand edge of the field. Cross a stone stile by a road. (26 mins). (See variation below).
Turn right along the road into Marcross village past a junction to the right by the Horseshoe Inn and then take the road to the left of a letter box. Head along this country lane, noting in the field on the left some humps and bumps which mark the remains of a deserted village. Just beyond this, Lan Farm, the cream-coloured building, dates from around 1780. Eventually pass a white house, The Larks, and two hundred yards beyond this look for an unmarked and far from obvious gap in the fence to your left. Head across the field with the hedge on your right (50 mins). Cross a stone stile, the field boundary now on your left. Cross another stone stile – the village of Wick is now visible in the distance with the distinctive tower-shaped base of its windmill. Head towards a metal gate to the left of a stone wall with farm buildings on your left. Cross the stone stile by the gate and then head left down the road. You come to a junction just past a Broughton signpost (1 hr 7 mins).
The guardians of Monknash Grange
Head down the road to the left signposted Monknash, eventually reaching a T junction. Ahead is an ivy-covered building – The Forge, Monknash. Our route is ahead but if you go left down this road for a short way and then right you come to the Plough and Harrow pub. Take the stone stile by the Forge following the footpath sign Blaen y Cwm. A short way beyond the Forge is a stone stile which brings you into the ruins of Monknash Grange. Keep ahead, passing to the right of the ruins although you might wish to detour to the left to look at the ivy-covered and circular dove-cot or columbarium. Cross a stone stile and then across the next field to another stone stile which brings you to a track. Turn right to ford the stream and then left across the field to a wooden stile. The path rises and then drops to a stone stile. Cross another stone stile and then head across the field aiming for a line of trees ahead. You cross a wooden stile. (1hr 30 mins).
Left, the dove-cot or columbarium in Monknash Grange. Right, Blaen y Cwm Nature Reserve.
Just to the left of a double wooden gate is a stone stile which you cross on to a drive. Turn left and then cross two stone stiles alongside a brown wooden gate. The road here crosses a stream and 20 yards beyond take the path to the right. The stone stile takes you into Blaen y Cwm nature reserve and down to the sea emerging on Monknash beach. When about 50 yards from the beach note a low stone wall to your right and on the far side of the stream - the wet area beyond the wall marks the Ffynnon Fair, a holy spring dedicated to St Mary. Just before the beach take the path to the left steeply up the hillside to head back along the coast with the sea on your right. When you reach the top take in the spectacular views in both directions down the coast. Keep along the cliff top over several stiles until you see the Nash Point lighthouses. The promontory to the right is an iron-age fort but your path descends into the valley down which we started. Cross the stream by a wooden bridge and then ascend the far side to return to the car park. (2 hrs 10 mins).
Left, looking East from the cliff-top. Right, looking West. Centre, looking down.
Map of walk.
Instead of turning right along the road (start of paragraph 3), cross the road and head along a track past the Farm buildings of Pen- y- Cae farm. After 30 yards you will see a stone stile on the right. Take this to enter a field, then head diagonally left across the field passing the old ruins and uneven ground of a deserted village on your right. Aim for a gate but take a stone stile just to the right of it which brings you onto a road. Turn left along this lane which brings you past Lan Farm (paragraph 3). NOTE: the stiles were only cleared in April 2004 and there was still some barbed wire beyond the first stile which you can crawl under. This variation cuts out a short section of road but is not shown on the map.