WAY OUT WEST
This tour takes passes through all 4 regions of the Brecon Beacons National Park, but the stops are in the west, in the Fforest Fawr Geopark. It is a historic and scenic tour with a Roman Fort, Wales' largest Hill Fort, 2 medieval Castles, a Cathedral, a Historic Quarry site and great mountain views. Much of the tour is in the Black Mountain range of the National Park which is the remotest and least frequently visited part of the National Park.
Herbert's Quarry also known as The Black Mountain Quarries
Carreg Cennen Castle
Red Kites are frequently seen on this tour
Brecon Gaer, Roman Fort
Twyn y Gaer Hill Fort and Mynydd Illtud - Spectacular views over all four mountain ranges in the National Park, a Roman road, an iron age fort, glacial moraine, and scientifically important wetland. For the best views we climb to the top of the hillfort which is a 15-minute walk each way.
Defynnog Yew Tree - At 5,600 years old this is the oldest tree in Europe! It is sitauted in the graveyard of Defynnog Church which also boasts a Roman grave.
The Usk Reservoir - A great place to view the summits of the Black Mountain, and to learn about the mysterious lake that lies at their base: Llyn y Fan Fach - This lake makes Lonely Planet's most unusual lakes list. It is enchanting and is enchanted. Here is set the legend of the Lady of the Lake. (The lake is not visable on this tour. If you want to visit it please join one our Carmarthen Fans Walking Tours.)
Herbert's Quarry (The Black Mountain Quarries) - Set in a stunning location on Black Mountain with panoramic views we learn about the history and find fossils in the limestone.
Carreg Cennen Castle - This castle has recently been voted the most romantic ruin in Wales. The Castle was built by the Welsh of Deheubarth in 1197, and later changed hands between the Welsh and English several times. We explore the castle and visit the cave beneath the castle. We can also learn the about the interesting geology that creates the cliff on which the castle sits.
Garn Goch Hill Fort - This is the largest prehistoric hill fort in Wales. It is divided into the small fort and the large fort. On our tour we visit the small fort which has good views of the large fort.
Bethlehem - We pass though this village, but it is not the Bethlehem where Jesus was born!
Mydffai - We pass through the village of Mydffai and learn about the Physicians of Mydffai.
Llandovery Castle - A Norman Castle with the earliest construction in 1116. It changed hands between the Welsh and English many times in its history and was finally burnt by Hywel ap Rhys in 1532.
Y Gaer Roman Fort - This fort near Brecon was built in Ad 75 and sits on a cross roads of Roman roads that went along the Usk Valley and those that linked Mid and South Wales.
Brecon Cathedral - Brecon Cathedral started life as the Benedictine Priory of St John the Evangelist in 1093 and was built by the Normans soon after they conquered Brychieniog. It became a Cathedral in 1923 when the Diocese of Brecon and Swansea was created. Inside the Cathedral is the Havard Chapel where the Colours that were rescued from the Battle of Isandlwana in the Zulu War. My grandfather was the last man to parade these Colours through Brecon before they were permanently hung up on display.