Pontypool / Blaenavon Cycle Route

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Route Details

  • From - To: Pontymoel Canal Basin to Garn Lakes
  • Distance: 7 miles
  • Type: Traffic-free railway path
  • Access: Nearest rail stations are Pontypool or Newport
  • Surface: Tarmac and gravel
  • National Cycle Network: Route 46

Route Description

This route follows the disused railway line to the World Heritage Site at Blaenavon and the Big Pit Mining Museum. Climbing steadily as it heads north from Pontypool, the path passes through broad-leaf woodland and offers fantastic views east across the valley of Afon Llwyd. Completely traffic-free, the route does feature a steady climb of over 650ft (200 metres) up to Blaenavon.

If you're coming from Pontypool train station turn right onto a quiet road, before turning left onto the main road for about 1/2km. Take a left turn onto National Cycle Network Route 49 alongside the canal, looking out for the left turn off onto National Cycle Network Route 492.

Whilst on the canal path, you can make a lovely lunch stop at the barge café at Pontymoile Basin, a perfect pit stop to build up your energy for the ride ahead.

The path starts to ascend as it heads north from Pontypool through Abersychan to Blaenavon, soon entering a long stretch of lovely broadleaf woodland, with dramatic views to the east across the valley of Afon Llwyd. You'll see plenty of wildlife along the way; look out for tiny ponies and flocks of sheep huddled up to the fences. With a gentle climb of over 650ft (200 metres) to Blaenavon it's obvious that the trip back down to Pontypool will be an easier ride!

If you catch a glimpse of steam in the distance, you're nearing Blaenavon's heritage railway. The line was closed to passengers in 1941, though the section from Blaenavon to Pontypool was used for transporting coal from Big Pit and other local mines until 1980. Take a break, lock up your bike and travel back in time on one of their original steam locos.

The route ends brilliantly at Big Pit National Coal Museum. This magnificent mining museum, right at the end of the route, is well worth the trip. Original features - like the Pithead Baths - bring life at the coalface vividly into focus. Go 300 feet underground with a real miner and see what life was like for the thousands of men (and pit ponies!) who worked at the coal face.

From here you can also detour into Blaenavon, a proud World Heritage Site, which played a significant part in the Industrial Revolution in the 19th century.

Journey back the way you came, but this time, downhill!

Local attractions:

 

Llwybr rheilffordd Pont-y-pŵl i Flaenafon

Taith ddelfrydol i ddarganfod rhai o safleoedd hanesyddol mwyaf diddorol Cymru, yn cynnwys Amgueddfa Lofaol Cymru y Pwll Mawr a rheilffordd treftadaeth Blaenafon. Tra ar lwybr tynnu’r gamlas gallwch fwynhau’r golygfeydd godidog a’r bywyd gwyllt, ac ystyriwch aros am seibiant yng nghaffi’r badau ym Masn Pontymoel.

Manylion allweddol y llwybr

  • Rhanbarth/Ardal: Cymoedd De Cymru
  • Pellter: 7 milltir
  • Amser sydd ei angen: 1.5 awr
  • Traffig: Di-draffig
  • Wyneb: Cymysg
  • Llwybr RhBC: Llwybr Cenedlaethol 492
  • Cychwyn: Hanbury Road, Pont-y-pŵl (ger cylchfan yr A472 / A4043)
  • Gorffen: Y Pwll Mawr, Blaenafon
  • Llogi beiciau: Mountain Tours, Blaenafon. Ffôn: 01495 793 123
  • Mynediad: Gorsaf drên ym Mhont-y-pŵluf

Os ydych yn dod o gyfeiriad gorsaf drenau Pont-y-pŵl trowch i’r dde i ffordd dawel, cyn troi i’r chwith i’r briffordd am tua 1/2 km. Trowch i’r chwith i Lwybr RhBC 49 sy’n rhedeg gerllaw’r gamlas gan gadw llygad am y tro i’r chwith i Lwybr RhBC 492.

Tra eich bod ar y llwybr camlas, gallwch gael egwyl hyfryd i ginio yn y caffi badau ym Masn Pont-y-moel, cyfle perffaith i fagu nerth ar gyfer y daith sydd o’ch blaen.

Mae’r llwybr yn dechrau dringo wrth iddo fynd tua’r gogledd o Bont-y-pŵl drwy Abersychan i Flaenafon, ac yn fuan dewch i ddarn hir o goetir llydanddail hyfryd, sydd â golygfeydd dramatig i’r dwyrain ar draws dyffryn Afon Llwyd. Fe welwch ddigonedd o fywyd gwyllt ar hyd y ffordd; cadwch lygad am ferlod bach a diadelloedd o ddefaid yn closio at y ffensys. Gyda ddringfa raddol i dros 650 troedfedd (200 metr) i Flaenafon mae’n amlwg y bydd y daith yn ôl i Bont-y-pŵl yn haws!

Os digwyddwch weld ager yn y pellter rydych yn agosáu at reilffordd treftadaeth Blaenafon. Caewyd y llinell i deithwyr ym 1941, er y cafodd yr adran o Flaenafon i Bont-y-pŵl ei defnyddio i gludo glo o’r Pwll Mawr a phyllau lleol eraill tan 1980. Cymrwch egwyl, clowch eich beic a theithiwch yn ôl mewn amser ar un o’u locomotifau ager gwreiddiol.

Mae’r daith yn diweddu yn Amgueddfa Lofaol Genedlaethol Pwll Mawr. Mae’r amgueddfa ryfeddol hon yn union ar ddiwedd y llwybr, ac mae’n gwneud y daith yn werth chweil. Mae nodweddion gwreiddiol - fel y Baddonau Pen Pwll - yn dod a bywyd ffas y glo yn fyw. Ewch y 300 troedfedd o dan ddaear gyda glöwr go iawn a gweld sut brofiad ydoedd i i filoedd o ddynion (a merlod pwll glo!) a weithiai ar y ffas lo.

Oddi yma gallwch hefyd fynd ar wyriad i mewn i Flaenafon, Safle Treftadaeth Byd balch, a chwaraeodd ran arwyddocaol yn y Chwyldro Diwydiannol yn y bedwaredd ganrif ar bymtheg.

Teithiwch yn ôl yr un ffordd ag a ddaethoch arni, ond y tro yma i lawr rhiw!

Atyniadau naturiol:

  • Coedwig lydanddail i’r gogledd o Abersychan, golygfeydd o’r dyffryn

Atyniadau i ymwelwyr:

Latitude: 
51.757325374169504
Longitude: 
-3.0270159380370365
Zoom level: 
12
Description: 

 

 
 

A perfect ride to discover some of Wales most interesting historical sites including Big Pit National Coal Museum and Blaenavon's heritage railway. Whilst on the canal path enjoy the lovely scenery and wildlife and consider stopping off at the barge café at Pontymoile Basin.

Length: 
7 miles