Day 8: Carreg Cennen Castle to Bethlehem
Finish point: Llangadog railway station (SN 699286)
Distance: 16km / 10 miles
Ascent: 280m / 920ft
Time: 4 hours
Day eight is short and the least demanding – appropriate for the last day.
The route passes through the middle of the ruined walls of Y Gaer Fawr , which date from 300BC. It is Wales’ second largest Iron Age hillfort. The route comes to a conclusion in the village of Bethlehem, renowned for its Post Office, which is now a private house. However a part-time Post Office is housed in the former village school. This is a hive of activity as Christmas approaches, when people want their Christmas cards to carry the village’s postmark.
From Carreg Cennen car park, head along the road until Castle View, then turn north along the obvious track. The track continues in a north-easterly direction until it changes to a path north of Cilmaenllwyd. Follow the markers through the fields until it rejoins the road – follow this for about 1.5km to the cross roads where you head straight on and cross the stile on your right. The clearly marked path heads through the fields and into Carreglwyd Forest, descending then re-ascending east through the trees to Bwlch y Gors. From here descend again through the fields along a track.
Join a road at Garn Wen, then head north and west at the track junction up to Garn Goch, an iron age hill fort with magnificent views over the Towy Valley on one side and up to the mountains on the other. Its prominent position led to it being occupied since ancient times – at least since the Bronze Age. Descend west through Y Gaer Fach (another hill fort) to the car park.
From the car park turn right at the road then after about 1km turn left onto a path immediately after the chapel and so into the village of Bethlehem.
Please take care as the lanes in this area are very narrow.
From Bethlehem, head north east on the road towards Llangadog, then after 800 metres, take the signed bridleway down to the left just before some houses. The route continues across paths, tracks and roads to wind its way pleasantly down to Felindre and across the bridge and through the beautiful Sawdde Common to Llangadog, reaching the A4069 opposite the Church. Mountains are visible in the distance and this marks the end of the magnificent journey Turn left on the main road, continuing on to Llangadog Railway Station and the end of the Beacons Way route. There is accommodation, shops and places to eat in Llangadog or you can catch trains up or down the line.