Walks from the Falls
Four different walks are given here:
1. To the top of the waterfall (not far, some climbing - track or rough steps)
2. The Berwyn Ridge walk (energetic high climb, 7 miles, needs right footwear and weather)
3. The Old Lead & Silver Mines (3 miles, moderate, along paths)
4. Llyn Lluncaws (4 miles, moderate climbing along track)
Walk one: to the top of the waterfall
From the the car park at Pistyll Rhaeadr, go through the black gate leading to the bottom of the waterfall. Or from the base of the falls take the path leading off through the woods to your right - don't cross the iron bridge (wrong direction).
Continue through the woods until you reach the stile and gate at the edge of the woods.
Alternative one: you can take steps that lead up the mountain to your left - they zigzag up the mountainside until they come out on a farm track at the top. Turn left here along the track.
Alternative two: you can continue along the farm track to your right - an easier route to the top. Follow the track and then turn sharp left with the track up the hill, back toward the falls.
Continue to the top of the ridge (100m). Continue further along the track around a corner. The track leads up the valley above the falls, and you will see a path leading down to the walled wood at the top of the waterfall. Follow the path down through the swing gate.
Make your way down between the trees to the edge of the waterfall. Here you can see the valley down bellow and the river tumbling over the 240ft drop into the pools below. There is a group of rocks just back from the edge that provide a little shelter and a seating area overlooking the whole valley. Be careful at the edge of the cliff!
From the top of the waterfall you can follow the stream up into the woods. You will find many smaller waterfalls further up the valley, with water tumblers that have carved pools that provide natural whirlpools - these are great to while away a summer's day in.
To get back to the café at the bottom of the falls, just retrace your steps back through the swing gate and up to the main track, turning right to make the descent.
Warning: it is advisable not to cross the river to gain access to the other side as there is no safe path down to the car park and café from there - unless you climb up and go all the way around along the ridge, above the cliff tops and quarries, and then drop down at the quarries and head back to Tan-y-Pistyll under the cliffs. Though this can be a nice walk, it is about 3 miles long.