Walk the Wales Coast Path Clynnog Fawr to Porthdinllaen
This section is a mix of road walking, but not as long as on the previous section, a high pass across the Eifl hills and plenty of coastal walking. Be aware of the amount if ascent on this section!
Distance: 24.8 km
Ascent: 893 m
Time: Allow 8 hours
Calculate the time using Naismith’s Rule and factor in your own pace.
Start and Finish: Clynnog Fawr to Porthdinllaen
Pub and Shop in Trefor, Excellent cafe in Nant Gwrtheyrn, Shops, cafes and pubs off path in Neyn and Ty Coch at the end of the walk.
Check out the businesses nearby for more places to stay and drink.
Main Road, steep climb to 500m to climb Bwlch Yr Eifl.
Remember that we cannot outline every single hazard on a walk – it’s up to you to be safe and competent. Read up on Keeping Safe on the Wales Coast Path, Navigation and the Gear and Equipment you’ll need.
Limited local services, but Bws Llyn operates from Nefyn onwards, but unfortunately does not cover the start of the route.
Walk the Wales Coast Path Clynnog Fawr to Porthdinllaen Details
The Wales Coastal Path from Clynnog to Porthdinllaen is a real mixed bag, in a good way. It starts off on the main road, albeit on a decent cycletrack beside it, before ascending relentlessly to around 400m and descending just as rapidly back to sea level at Nant Gwrtheyrn. There’s some coastal woodland along Porth y Nant and an old quarry at Penrhyn Glas before heading along ancient trackways to the church at Pistyll and on to Nefyn. The final leg to Porthdinllaen finishes the walk off nicely as it finishes at Wales’ best located pub, Ty Coch.
1 Walk to Trefor alongside the A499 on a wide cycletrack. It’s better than it sounds, with views to the sea in one direction and Gyrn Ddu to the other. After a few kilometres , the path leaves the A499 cycletrack and heads on down along a quiet road into Trefor.
A New pub – Tafarn y Twr – has opened in Trefor, marking the first proper facility along this stretch since Dinas Dinlle!
2 Turn right when you reach the village along the road down to the shore. The coastal path finally reaches the sea, and the Llyn coast really begins to shine! It may be a short section, but serves as a cameo before the track turns inland once more. You pass a cottage, West End before the path turns left inland, clearly marked along old green lanes as you first pass some farmsteads and then cross a field to the right before finding yourself on the track up to Bwlch yr Eifl.
There was, according to local legend, a path along the coast between Trefor and Nant Gwrtheyrn that crossed Trwyn y Gorlech, however it was the stuff of nightmares, with parents warning their children off attempting it. It sounds more like a grade three scramble, with a few leaps of faith thrown in for good measure and probably not recommended!
3 This track now pulls up relentlessly, to the summit of the coastal path at Bwlch yr Eifl. You pass the remains of old quarrymen’s cottages as the track pulls steeply uphill. It’s less clear as you reach the hillside but still easily followed into the bwlch. It’s the ideal spot for a break, and if you have the time to ascend Yr Eifl as well.
4 The descent is welcome enough to the car park with a few sections eroded away and cordoned off, but becomes pure torture once you join the tarmac Road down to the Welsh Language Centre at Nant Gwrtheyrn. This makes an ideal lunch stop as it has excellent food, service and views.
5 The next section crosses the bay of Porth y Nant. Continue downhill towards the shore from the cafe, passing the remains of the old granite works. The path soon re-ascends up towards the headland of Penrhyn Glas. This section angles steeply uphill, taking you from sea level to over 200m. This section walks through some totally unexpected woodland, with a number of welcome streams to cross (some of the few that we’d consider drinking from on the entire peninsula).
The headland is dominated by the Penrhyn Glas quarry, which might make interesting exploration if time permits, but there’s still a fair distance to go before Porthdinllaen.
6 From the Penrhyn Glas, the path heads uphill and along an old track that brings you quickly to the church at Pistyll. Even if this track wasn’t a right of way, arriving as it does at the church makes me suspect that this would surely have been walked by pilgrims to Ynys Enlli.
After the church, the path takes a complicated route across fields and tracks to reach the road, with a careful eye needed here to spot the waymarkers.
7 You’re back on the main road – and you need to follow it left for 100m before crossing the road into the drive of Ty-mawr. The coastal path should now be followed inland along the flanks of Gwylwyr Carreglefain. The track heads uphill, passing numerous cottages on the way before eventually descending into Nefyn.
8 The path at Nefyn appears in what looks like a playing field, where you need to turn right along a very narrow path (with fence panels on one side) which brings you out at the church and the town just beyond. You can turn left here into the town to stock up on supplies. Continue onward and you’re soon back on the coast.
9 The section along Porth Nefyn is quite spectacular, and a good point to look behind you at the coast that you’ve just covered, as much of the section after Penrhyn Glas isn’t apparent from above. The path heads out onto Penrhyn Nefyn, before continuing on above Porth Dinllaen. Some sections here have been diverted due to erosion, but they’re always waymarked.
10 The path eventually descends some steps, and you can normally ascend to the National Trust car park from here. The path was closed today. You can walk to Porthdinllaen along the shore, but the tide was in, leaving the official route to the golf course along the road.
11 At the golf course, you’ll enter at the gate along the right of way. This isn’t clearly marked at the gate, as there was even a red light at the gate that prevented entry. Rather than being some peculiarity with the sport of golf, this turned out to be directed at traffic rather than pedestrians! There’s still a good 15 minutes to the pub, just keep an eye out for golfers and rogue golf balls.
Finally – finish the walk at Ty Coch, one of the tip ten beach pubs in the world. It was vibrant in there, with a buzz from locals who knew each other rather than a fake imitation of a pub, stuffed with tourists. There was also a smattering of golfers here, who had driven down in their buggies for a swift break. With craft and real ale, we were impressed! Of course, you’ll now need to walk back to the car park to catch the Bws Llyn, or continue onward