Craig y Ddinas
Start: Parking lot near Corsy Gedol Hall
End: Parking lot near Corsy Gedol Hall
Distance: 4 miles (6.4km)
Difficulty: Easy to Moderate
Surface: Rural Pathway
Craig y Ddinas is an Iron Age hill fort on an isolated rock 1,138 feet (347 m) above sea level that commands a wonderful view of Cardigan Bay and is itself overlooked by three mountain peaks: Moelfre, Diffwys, and Llawlech.
Craig y Ddinas is one of the places that lays claim to King Arthur’s resting place. The fortifications are well preserved, with visible features, including some of the original stone ramparts and the remains of round houses of varying periods, from Neolithic: to the time of the Roman occupation. The exact purpose of the fort is lost in the mists of antiquity, but many archaeologists and historians believe that it is more likely to have been a refuge and a meeting place than a primitive castle.
The path to the summit is no less interesting. Along it hikers pass a prehistoric burial cairn, Bronze Age mounds of burned stone, and the foundations of several buildings from the Middle Ages. Next come the remains of Cors Uchaf, a Viking settlement in a sheltered valley, a site that went undetected for almost 1,000 years until revealed by aerial photography. The final section of the ascent is dominated by the fort itself, which rooms above the path. After pausing for a rest and the breathtaking views, the return journey is back along the same path.
The start of the trail is easily accessible by car, just off the A496 between Harlech and Barmouth.The walk is a well-maintained track and therefore easy to negotiate, but there are several stiles to be climbed, and the whole area is liable to become boggy in the rainy season, which the Welsh mostly say ends in May and starts again in June. This is largely self-deprecation, but they also say that there is many a true word spoken in jest.