Fforest Fawr, near Caerphilly

Gateway to Castell Coch, one of the most picturesque castles in Wales

What's here

Coronavirus update

 

The car park, trails and picnic area at Fforest Fawr are open.

 

The nearby car park at Castell Coch (operated by CADW) is closed.

 

Visiting our sites safely

 

We are working hard to provide a safe and welcoming experience as our sites re-open.

 

Please take personal responsibility for your safety, making additional preparations ahead of your visit and abiding by the safety measures in place.

 

We have changed the normal route for some of our trails to help you maintain social distancing – please follow signs on site.

 

See our tips about how to plan for a safe visit.

Overview

Fforest Fawr is the stunning backdrop to Castell Coch, a famous castle nestled in the trees above the village of Tongwynlais.

This beautiful woodland is frequently used as a film location for productions ranging from Welsh historical dramas to children's TV programmes.

The forest has an industrial history and there are some impressive deep holes left by iron mining here.

There are two trails to the castle. 

Part of the Taff Trail, a long distance route for walkers and cyclists from Cardiff Bay to Brecon, passes through Fforest Fawr.

Removing diseased trees 

We have now reopened trails and footpaths following a major operation to remove diseased larch trees.

Approximately 4,000 larch trees have been removed from 25 hectares of the forest – an area around the size of 25 international rugby pitches. 

The forest will now be monitored as it recovers, with native tree species expected to naturally regenerate to replenish felled areas. 

Read our FAQ document for more information about the felling.

Walking trails

There are two waymarked walking trails from Castell Coch car park which is 1.5 kilometres from Fforest Fawr car park.

Sir Henry’s Trail

2.31 miles, 3.72km kilometres

Sir Henry’s Trail is a circular route through the forest, past Castell Coch and the former mining site known as Three Bears.

Burges’ Way

1.77 miles, 1.12 kilometres

Burges’ Way is a short circular trail through the forest. It goes past Castell Coch and the Blue Pool, one of the many former iron mining sites here.

How to get here

Fforest Fawr is near Tongwynlais off the A470. 

Car parking is free of charge.

 

Directions

From the A470, follow the signs to Castell Coch. Continue past the castle entrance for 1.5 kilometres to Fforest Fawr car park.

Ordnance Survey map

Fforest Fawr is on Ordnance Survey (OS) map 151.

The OS grid reference is ST 143 838.

Public transport

The nearest train station is in Taffs Well.

Fforest Fawr is on the Taff Trail cycle route, which goes between Cardiff and Brecon. For details of public transport visit www.traveline.cymru

Contact details

0300 065 3000

enquiries@naturalresourceswales.gov.uk

Related document downloads

Fforest Fawr location map PDF [155.1 KB]
Fforest Fawr felling FAQ PDF [303.0 KB]

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