Fforest Fawr, near Caerphilly

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

What's here

This site and visitor facilities are open – please see more details on this web page.

 

Coronavirus update

 

The Welsh Government is implementing a national coronavirus firebreak from 6pm on Friday 23 October until Monday 9 November.

 

The firebreak regulations replace the local restrictions which were in force in some parts of the country. They apply to everyone living or travelling in Wales.

 

Our sites and most visitor facilities remain open during this firebreak period but people are advised to stay at home and only visit sites in the local area to take exercise.

 

Visiting your local site safely

 

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

 

You need to wear a mask when going inside one of our buildings.

 

You can check-in via the NHS app when entering one of our buildings – scan the QR-code on the NHS Covid-19 poster on site.

 

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

Location

Fforest Fawr is near Tongwynlais off the A470. 

It straddles the county borders of Cardiff and Rhonda Cynon Taf.

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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