Fforest Fawr, near Caerphilly

Fforest Fawr, near Caerphilly

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

Autumn view at Fforest FawrWhat’s here

  • Walking trails
  • Other activities (children’s sculpture trail)

Visitor Information


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 and a sculpture trail for children.

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

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Closures and diversions

Please note:

  • Sometimes we need to close or divert trails for your safety whilst we undertake maintenance work or forest operations
  • Occasionally we may have to close a site in extreme weather, such as high winds or snow and ice due to the risk of injury to visitors or staff
  • Please always follow any instructions onsite and make sure you follow any temporary diversion signs in place

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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.

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Other activities

Children's Sculpture Trail

1.5 miles, 2.6 kilometres

The sculpture trail was created by the Cardiff Outdoor Learning Wales network group.

They worked with local children to design and develop a trail linked to Welsh Government literacy and numeracy curriculums.

The sculptures tell a story of a giant creature living in the woods. Although the creature is never seen, the sculptures give clues for children to use their imagination to create and share their own story.

It starts and ends in the Fforest Fawr car park.

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Find out more

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How to get here

Fforest Fawr is near Tongwynlais off the A470. 

The OS grid reference is ST 143 838.

Car parking is free of charge.

Download the location map.


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

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

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Contact details

Tel: 0300 065 3000

Email: enquiries@naturalresourceswales.gov.uk 

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