From Borth to Aberystwyth




6 miles (9.7kms)

1184ft (361m)

About the walk

The Ceredigion Coast Path ambles and saunters along the stunning coastline of Ceredigion for over 60 miles (96km). The starting point at its southern end is the town of Cardigan, once the most important seaport in this part of Wales, and it ends a few miles north of Aberystwyth at the impressive sand dunes of Ynyslas. On a clear day, the views stretch across the glittering seas of Cardigan Bay southwards to the coastline of Pembrokeshire and northwards to the Llyn Peninsula and Bardsey Island.

The Ceredigion Coast Path is one of eight sections of Welsh coastline that were linked in 2012 to create the Wales Coast Path. Wales is the first country in the world to have a path that circumnavigates its entire coastline. It covers a whopping 870 miles (1,400km), from Chepstow in the south to Queensferry in the northeast.

Towards the northern end of the Ceredigion Coast Path is the village of Borth. This seaside resort scores lots of points because of its position. To the north, bordering the beautiful Dyfi Estuary, lies the peat bog of Cors Fochno which is an important National Nature reserve. To the south are sea cliffs with superb airy walks, the best of which is the linear walk to Aberystwyth.

Aberystwyth is a town of great historical importance. Overlooking the harbour is the once mighty castle built in 1277 for Edward I as part of his impregnable ‘iron ring’. During Edward’s reign Welshmen were not allowed within the walls of the town, though with time and mixed marriages this changed. The town and castle fell to the Welsh under Owain Glyndwr in 1404, and for a short time Wales had its Parliament here. With the demise of this last Welsh Prince of Wales however, the castle again became tangled up in English politics and fell victim to the Civil War which left it in the ruins you see today.

Walk directions

Turn left from the railway station and follow the main street (or grey shingle beach). Cross straight over the roundabout, then bear right for Cliff Road. Follow this to its end where the cliff path begins on the right, climbing past the war memorial. Looking back you can see Borth stretching out to the sands of the Dyfi Estuary, but the dominant feature of this view is Cors Fochno, the peat bogs.

Descend to a cove below a caravan park before climbing back to the top of the cliffs. Always to the left you’ll see lush fields, while to the right there is often a bird’s-eye view of the beach below. There’s another steep descent and re-ascent west of Brynbala farm, which lies at the foot of a rounded coastal hill of the same name. The path traverses a steep slope before coming to a little valley inhabited by a huge house, Wallog. Descend to cross the stream and pass the seaward front of the house, then continue along the coast path.

Clarach Bay is home to a vast, sprawling caravan site. Cross a wooden bridge and follow the road ahead until it bends left. Here, go right to follow a path that rakes through pinewoods.

Suddenly you’re back in the thick of it – on Constitution Hill. After having a look around, continue on the coast path, which crosses then re-crosses the cliff railway before coming down to the town.

Now follow the promenade, known as Marine Terrace. Here you see the sweep of Cardigan Bay framed by hundreds of Victorian terraced guest houses and a short pier jutting into the sea. On Penparcau, the next hill, overlooking both the Rheidol and Ystwyth estuaries, are the earthwork remains of an Iron Age fort, which was probably founded around 600 bc. Leave the promenade at Terrace Road and continue ahead to the station to catch a train back to Borth.

Additional information

Good coast path eroded in places, several stiles

Sea cliffs and promenades

Under close control on coast path

OS Explorer 213 Aberystwyth & Cwm Rheidol, tiny part on Explorer OL23 Cadair Idris & Llyn Tegid

On-street parking in Borth near station or in car park near Aberystwyth Station (pay)

At Aberystwyth car park or on the seafront at Borth

Regular train and bus service except Sundays

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About the area

Discover Ceredigion

The name ‘Ceredigion’ takes a bit of explanation. The town of Cardigan gives its name to the surrounding bay, but the county now uses the Welsh word for Cardiganshire – Ceredigion, pronounced with a ‘dig’. Cardigan Bay itself is a large inlet of the Irish Sea and stretches from Bardsey Island to Strumble Head. With many beaches and a unique marine life, it’s the place to come to spot bottlenose dolphins, porpoises and Atlantic grey seals. The area is a Special Area of Conservation (SAC), designated under European law to protect its species and habitats. The Ceredigion coastal path is also a major attraction.

Much of the surrounding land is fertile farmland, dotted with towns and seaside resorts such as Fishguard, New Quay, Aberaeron, Aberystwyth, Borth, Aberdyfi, Barmouth and Porthmadog. It’s also a section of coast that major rivers flow into, including the Afon Glaslyn, Teifi, Rheidol, Dyfi, Aeron, Dysynni and Mawddach. Historically, the area supported a strong maritime industry. Cardigan was a major hub, once having more than 300 ships registered in its port, seven times as many as Cardiff. Due to being something of a backwater, in many ways this area remains charmingly unspoilt. The nearby heather-clad Preseli Hills are an additional delight.

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