Sailing, boating and windsurfing in the Brecon Beacons National Park
There are plenty of enjoyable ways to get afloat in the Brecon Beacons National Park.
Dinghy sailing and windsurfing on Llangorse Lake
Llangorse Lake, the largest natural lake in Wales, is as scenic a place for sailing as one could hope to find. It covers an area of 400 acres in an old glacial hollow between the Brecon Beacons and the Black Mountains.
You can launch your own boat from one of the slipways. There's a charge for this, payable annually or daily at Lakeside Boat Hire (Lakeside Caravan and Camping Park, Llangorse Common, LD3 7TR, tel 01874658226, www.llangorselake.co.uk) on the north-west shore, which acts as sole agent for the lake management company. It also has dinghies, windsurfers and other craft for hire. The lake is zoned for various types of craft.
Alternatively, head for Llangorse Sailing Club (www.llangorsesailing.com) which is also on Llangorse Common. Visitors from other clubs can join for a week while on holiday and get access to the lake, boat storage and hire facilities. Races take place on Sundays from March to November.
The Club is an RYA Training Centre with a wide variety of sailing courses for beginners and improvers. It also holds two very popular and successful annual Fun Days which cater for families and for people with disabilities.
Dinghy sailing and windsurfing on Pontsticill Reservoir
You can also sail in in wonderful mountain surroundings at Pontsticill Reservoir near Merthyr Tydfil. It's the home patch of Merthyr Tydfil Sailing Club (www.mtsc.org.uk), which sails here at weekends throughout the year and on Wednesday evenings in summer. Short term membership is available for visitors. Contact the club before you go, as you’ll need somebody to let you in through the locked barrier.
The club has an RS Vision training dinghy, which new members may use to learn on with guidance from club members. It also has facilities for disabled sailors. Races take place on Sundays from March to December.
Please remember that swimming is not permitted in reservoirs in the Brecon Beacons National Park – you should not enter the water of a reservoir except when you capsize by accident, or during capsize and rescue training.
If you’d like to try a boat for an hour or two, why not?
You could build a coracle and try it on a duck pond! Or you could hire a rowing boat or a pedalo on the River Usk at Brecon.
You can launch your own boat from the Brecon and Monmouth Canal slipways or take it to Llangorse Lake, where there are also rowing boats, fishing boats and pedalos for hire (there's a launch fee at both locations).
If you just want to enjoy a leisurely boat trip along the canal you can book a narrowboat cruise for a couple of hours from Brecon Basin on most days during the summer months, taking a journey from Brecon to Brynich Lock and back, with on-board refreshments available.
To make a proper holiday of it, you could hire an electric narrowboat or dayboat on the canal and have a low-carbon adventure. For details, see our Outdoor activity equipment, instruction and guides page.
Be prepared, be responsible, stay safe
For important advice on good practice and safety including the Check, Clean, Drain, Dry routine, see our Be prepared and stay safe section.