Welcome to Coed y Brenin Forest Park Visitor Centre
World-class mountain bike trails, family walks...
Try your hand at geocaching or orienteering and there's plenty for children, too
Geocaching is a great way of having fun in the countryside.
The aim is to hunt out carefully hidden caches using maps and satellite navigation devices called GPS (Global Positioning System) receivers.
If you find a cache, and some are very hard to spot, there are often trade items in them that you can swap and a log book for you to record your visit.
There are two geocache trails in Coed y Brenin Forest Park.
These are circular walks, starting and finishing at the visitor centre, along forest roads and footpaths.
They take in secluded sites of historic importance hidden in the forest including the Sarn Helen Roman road, a Medieval iron works and the disused goldmines at Gwynfynydd.
The trail is designed for walkers only - there is no access to the cache sites by vehicles.
Stout footwear is recommended as the routes have both steep ascents and descents on unmade uneven surfaces.
Please be aware that there are fast flowing rivers, deep gorges and old workings in the forest – the caches are NOT placed in any area of obvious danger.
There are four permanent orienteering courses (a series of wooden posts you have to find in order) in Coed y Brenin Forest Park, all of which start and finish at the Visitor Centre.
These include two easier courses for beginners, one of which is suitable for children, and two harder courses for confident map readers and experienced orienteers.
The routes are all graded to British Orienteering Federation standards and were designed by the Mid-Wales Orienteers.
Yellow course, 1.7 kilometres, easy
The yellow course is suitable for complete beginners and children. The navigation is easy, there is no route choice, and the entire course can be completed on good paths. The course is 1.7 kilometres long.
Orange course, 2.7 kilometres, easy
The orange course is harder than the yellow course and is suitable for adults and older children who can understand a map. It has controls on or close to line features as well as paths and allows you to develop your navigational skills.
Red course, 5.3 kilometres, hard
The red course is suitable for fit people who are reasonably confident map-readers. The navigation is moderate, with route choices. You will need to use line features other than paths (for example, walls) as “handrails”, and in one or two places, you will need to venture a short way from line features.
Light green course, 2.7 kilometres, hard
The light green course is suitable for experienced orienteers. The navigation is harder, with route choices. Some controls are on point features which are some way from any line feature.
The children’s play area is situated right next to the Coed y Brenin Forest Park Visitor Centre.
Toddlers play area, suitable for children aged between 3 and 6 years
The toddlers play area has easy access for parents, pushchairs and young children.
It is the highest of the three tiers of the play area and allows you to keep an eye on your older children playing in the other two areas below.
It has a safety surfaced play zone and the equipment includes a play house with double width slide, a rotating dish, dual swings and rocking animals.
All-ability play area, suitable for children aged over 4 years
The all-ability play area is the middle tier of the play area.
It is surfaced in a smooth rubberised material which is ideal for wheelchair access.
Many of the items of play equipment have dual functions such as:
This play area also includes a giant basket swing, a revolving dish and a three metre long dual slide and rope climb.
Free play area, suitable for children aged over 5 years
The free play area is the lowest tier and is an unfenced area which blends into the wider forest.
The only formal piece of play equipment is a timber climbing wall. There are also rock stepping stones, a story telling area with log seats, a stream to dam, branches to make dens from and flowering fruit trees.
The trail starts from the visitor centre and all the animals can be found on the Afon Eden Riverside Trail. This one mile long route follows a pushchair friendly all-ability path and goes past a riverside picnic site.
You can borrow a free discovery backpack at the visitor centre and discover more of the great outdoors.
Each backpack contains useful goodies like binoculars, a magnifying glass, a bug pot and nature identification cards along with a guide explaining how to use them.
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