Black Covert Woodland, near Aberystwyth
Sheltered picnic site with riverside walk
Walking trails through huge beech trees with views over surrounding hills
All Natural Resources Wales (NRW) car parks, play areas and toilet blocks in the reserves, woods and forests are closed from 23 March 2020.
For more information see our main page on coronavirus.
The Arch car park and picnic area is named after a spectacular old masonry arch which sits by the side of the road from Devil's Bridge.
It was built in 1810 to mark the Golden Jubilee of King George III and the road used to run through it. The arch was once the gateway to the nearby Hafod Estate.
The three short walking trails all lead through huge beech trees planted over 200 years ago by Thomas Johnes who designed the Hafod mansion and grounds.
The viewpoint from the Panorama Walk has far-reaching views.
There are picnic tables on the grassy slope by the car park, overlooking the arch.
The three walking trails are waymarked and start from the car park.
They are circular trails and they all return to the car park past a bench in a glade of huge beech trees.
½ mile/0.8 kilometres, moderate
See huge 200 year-old beech trees planted by Hafod Estate designer, Thomas Johnes, on this short trail.
1 mile/1.6 kilometres, moderate
The Arch Woodland Trail winds its way uphill, passing through several areas of broadleaved trees.
It has views to the surrounding hills, especially in the areas where trees have been felled recently.
1⅓ miles/2.1 kilometres, moderate
After a short but steep climb through heather and bilberry, you’ll reach the viewpoint with bench and panoramic views over the surrounding hills as far as Snowdonia National Park.
The trail continues down steps and returns to the car park through areas of huge beech trees.
There are five waymarked walking trails at the nearby Hafod Estate, famous for its “Picturesque” landscape.
The Cambrian Way passes by the Arch car park. This long distance trail crosses some of the highest and wildest parts of Wales on its journey from the coast at Cardiff to Conwy.
The Arch has been designated as a Dark Sky Discovery Site as it is one of the best local places to see the stars.
It is located in the Cambrian Mountains which have some of the darkest night skies in Europe.
Dark Sky Discovery Sites are places that:
Get tips for enjoying the night sky on the UK Dark Sky Discovery Partnership website
We have felled groups of larch trees infected with the fungal disease Phytophthora ramorum here to help stop it spreading.
The walking trails all pass through areas of recently felled trees and there are now more views from the paths to the surrounding hills.
Read more about tree health in Wales
The Arch car park is 15 miles east of Aberystwyth.
Parking is free of charge.
Take the B4574 from Devil's Bridge to Cwmystwyth. After two miles, pass a stone arch on the left and the car park and picnic area is just after it on the left.
The Arch is on Ordnance Survey (OS) map 213.
The OS grid reference is SN 765 756.
For details of public transport visit Traveline Cymru's website.
Tel: 0300 065 3000
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