Ramblers Association Cardiff Walks   Cardiff group badge  
Cardiff Ramblers Cardiff Walks leaflets map of routes Capital Walks
This project grew from our two books of local walk routes. These are now out of print, but the route descriptions are available on this site. "Capital Walks" was the name of the first book of walks produced by Cardiff Ramblers - following our members' favourite routes. This led to a second book, "More Capital Walks", this time with a planned approach, having a number of walks around the periphery of Cardiff, and linking together into a 38 mile Capital Walk route around the city.
Google Maps route map
This map should be visible in any browser that can use Google Maps.
The map shows the route of the Capital Walk.
You can zoom in and out, and drag the map around, using the map controls. Zooming in shows locations of photos.
Also available in a OS Openmaps version.

1    From Swanbridge car park / promenade. Walk east across car park, keeping close to coast, to small gateway and thus onto coastal road. Keep to this road for about one and a half kms to the B4267 Penarth-SulIy road. Cross this road to track opposite, there are Cosmeston Park notices on gate. Walk on and the recreated mediaeval village soon appears on the right. Take the lane on right, signed to the village, and then, unless you want to visit the village, go left at village entrance, over bridge and boardwalk to car park.

2    Go anticlockwise around the lake and where the lake path meets a broad path turn right. To the left you can see that the path goes over a bridge and between the 2 lakes. Follow this broad track for about 15 minutes until it reaches Old Cogan Hall Farm. Veer left in front of the farm and then right past it and past Cogan Church up to the road. Turn left and go along the road for about 200 metres until, at a bend where the road swings left, you turn right. The road quickly becomes a lane and in 30 metres goes off right. Follow this path to pass, in about 800 metres, a large school on your left. Past the school and soon left and down into Murch Road. The road widens considerably as it veers left. Continue along this busy road for about 800 metres, over the railway and down to the traffic lights. Straight across this road, the Cardiff Road, and into Millbrook Road. To the end of Millbrook Road, across Mill Lane and into parking space directly opposite.

3    This leads onto a waymarked stile. Over and follow the path for about 200 metres then over / through another stile, cross a wider track and over a third stile and into a field. Straight across, with edge of field close on your left, it is waymarked half way across, and out of the field via another waymarked stile. Straight up and over the rise ahead, past a way-marking post, still keeping the fence/hedge on your left, to yet another stile. Over and onto a track which is also waymarked and joins another track in about 150 metres. Turn right to reach the road via a bridge over the Wrinstone Brook.

4    At road turn left and walk for 150 metres to reach, on your left, a kissing gate entrance to a series of weirs known locally as Salmon Leaps, (sign, "Private, No Fishing" but there is a right of way throughout.) Go through the gate and follow a clear way-marked path alongside the man-made weirs, part of the Cwrt yr Ala estate, the house (private) lies above the rise to the right. Cross a stile into a wood in 400 metres and follow path as it rises briefly then turns slIghtly left before continuing ahead into an initially denser part of the wood. Follow the clear path which borders the Wrinstone Brook on the left for about 600 metres until the path rises to leave the wood at a stile leading into a small meadow. Turn left from the stile and walk to another easily seen stile. Cross the stile and turn right along the concreted driveway of Wrinstone Farm with Wrinstone House behind you.

5    Turn left and go through the farmyard with the farmhouse to the right and look for a gate in the farthest right corner. Go through the gate into a field with 2 electricity lines crossing in parallel. Aim for a gate ahead. Through gate and bear right to visible stile opposite, at time of writing by crossing wide track where a main has been recently laid. Cross this stile and then 2 more in close proximity; this path leads you across a disused railway line. Look ahead for footbridge and stile and then in about 40 metres another stile. Cross this field with the hedge to your immediate left to a stile in the left hand corner of the field. In 15 metres yet another stile. Immediately after this stile look for a wide gap in the left hand hedge with a dilapidated footbridge. Through and over, then turn right and follow the stream for about 150 metres to reach a stile to the right in the fence. Cross the stile and a footbridge in front of water culverts. Over the stile at the end of the footbridge and then immediately left over a stile to pass through the tunnel under the main road into a housing estate. Walk out to T-junction to main village street and turn left for St. Mary's Church.

6    Just before the church turn right, walk up to the end of this road, Wallston Road. At the top go onto waymarked path. Turn left, up stone steps, almost immediately. Climb up through the woods, with the TV mast on your right clearly visible and disused quarries down to your immediate right. On your left will be a stone wall as the path levels out. Just by a house the path joins a very broad but unmetalled track. Turn right onto this track. It leads across a road as you head in the direction of the TV mast. Once over the road the track narrows slightly but becomes metalled. Go past the appropriately named "Teleview Kennels" on your left and the TV mast on your right. Just past the mast the road surface changes to grass and in about 100 metres divides into 3. Take the left hand path towards the houses. When you reach the road in front of the house turn left and go up to the A48.

7    Take great care in crossing this very busy road to a kissing gate directly opposite. Through gate and across field with hedge on your immediate right. Soon you will come to a charming stone stile which leads into a copse with no exit. It is completely fenced with new barbed wire at the moment of writing. For the time being you will have to turn left for a while and then right through the farmyard. Once through go left and bear to the left of a small copse ahead, then half right and head for a stile at edge of wood and in left hand corner of field. (ignore the dilapidated stile located more in the centre of the edge of the wood). Over stile and, as you go through the woods, first to the left of some kind of fenced-in enclosure, and then down along a clearly defined path to a stile at the bottom edge of the wood to emerge. 40 metres ahead there is another clearly visible stile. Over this, half left and down to a stile / wooden fence by an oak tree. Over, diagonally right for about 100 metres to hidden stile / fence which is up the slope and in opposite hedge. Over, then right and through the gate where hedge and fence meet. With hedge on your right proceed and you will reach a gate, on your right, in about 80 metres. Through then soon left with hedge / fence on your left to wooden fence / stile and down field to reach the Greendown Inn, visible in the middle distance.

8    Past the pub on the road and in 40 metres turn in through a field gate to visible stile ahead and just under railway line. Over the stile and over the delightful foot bridge which takes you over the river and under the railway. Over the stile and bear half left away from the railway line to stile in opposite fence which brings you onto the track of a disused railway. Go right and in 50 metres a stile on your right takes you down and under the dual carriageway road which is a spur road for the M4.

9    Once under go left, halfway up some stone steps, then right and wind up and around for about 20 metres, with a fence on your right, to a high stile at the top of the rise. Climb over, turn right and head for the museum at St. Fagans, visible in the middle distance. With the road on your left and the river on your right, you will come to a stile / gate on your left near the entrance to the museum car park.

10    Turn right and just before the museum road joins another road, level crossing on your right, turn left up between some cottages to a path which has the museum fence on your left and the castle wall on your right.

11    Where the fence ends on your left, turn half left through a wooden kissing-gate, and left again to go down an impressive broad green avenue between 2 lines of stately, tall trees. As you leave the trees bear right, gradually veering away from the wooden fence on your left and head to the left of a large copse ahead. Once past the copse go half right to a fence ahead. You will find a kissing gate in this fence. Go through and head to the right of the house ahead. Once out onto the St. Brides Road, turn right and go along road for about 1,000 metres. Just after a house on your right turn left off the road, through or over a field gate.

12    With the hedge on your right walk across the field for 300 metres until you come to another gate which leads you through yet another gate and then across a disused railway Line and over a stile / gate into the field beyond. Straight down this field to the farm, Lower Stockland, in the middle distance. Through the farmyard and turn left onto the lane. Follow the farm track for about 700 metres until you reach Upper Stockland Farm. On this track, to your left, you have a fine view of the old, ruined mill at St. y Nyll on the skyline. Go left of the house and through the farmyard and two gates into a ploughed field. The footpath goes straight through the middle of the field, but you had better follow the right hand hedge around for about 150 metres until you come to a gap in the hedge. 15 metres after going through the gap you go over a gate. Then diagonally down over field heading for a gate in the opposite left hand corner. Through gate and, with farm buildings on your right, in 80 metres ahead over another gate and up and away from the farm for 250 metres, passing a big new, red and yellow house, on your left, as you cross over a bridge over a disused railway line to reach the Llantrisant road, another very busy road, near where it crosses the M4.

13    Turn left on road and once over the motorway go right up a road signposted Craig y Parc. 100 metres up this road, and opposite a house called "Woodfield", turn right through a gate and onto a track leading to Trewern Farm. Follow this track as it curves left until about 40 metres before the farm you turn right over way-marked stile. Straight across the field to stile, footbridge, stile in close proximity. After second stile follow M4 fence to another way-marked stile which overlooks the motorway. Over stile and turn left to follow a broad track through 2 gaps in wooden fencing about 10 metres apart and then, in 100 metres over a wooden 2 bar fence. In 30 metres opposite an old farm building which is on your right, turn left over a stile. Once over turn right and with the hedge on your immediate right continue across the field. Where the hedge goes off at right angles you leave the hedge and carry straight on over the field towards the trees where you will find yet another way-marked stile which leads onto a sunken and sometimes very muddy track. Turn left and go up this sunken track. In about 200 metres you will reach a narrow metalled drive leading away from the house on your left, (Tawel fan). Walk away from the house and, in about 60 metres, and just before the road joins a bigger one, turn right over a stile and you will find yourself between 2 finger posts. Go half right and down the field to a stile at the corner of the woods below. Over and go down, and then up diagonally across the field in the direction of a black and white house in the middle distance, in the corner of this field there is another stile, over, turn right and in 20 metres you will come onto the road leading up to the village of Pentyrch. Turn left and up the hill on the road for about 800 metres. Some 60 metes before you come to the King Arthur Inn and opposite the church turn right at a green waymarker onto a path and over a stile. Straight up the field, going through successively  2 wide gaps in hedges until you reach a road. Turn right onto road for 40 metres then left over way-marked stile. Keeping to left hand edge of fields go over 2 more stiles. Then through gap in hedge ahead. following the track round past the houses which will be on your left. Over another stile onto road and in 20 metres sharp right down steep, narrow path to road below.

14    There is a stile on the right with a marked path leading steeply down. Follow this to where it emerges on the Pentyrch Road. Cross the road (take care since traffic tends to speed along it) to a further stile slightly to you left. This leads into field having a stile to the next field immediately to your right. Once over the stile go diagonally right downhill to the bottom of the alley (this is likely to be extremely muddy in wet weather). Cross the stream and go diagonally left up the other side, making slightly to the right of the highest point, to where there is a stile which gives access to the corner of the next field. Cross this field making your way diagonally uphill to reach a stile to yet another field. Traversing this field brings you to a stile which leads to a road. A few metres uphill on the road there is a road junction. Take the road to the right which leads gradually uphill. you are now on the Ridgeway which is clearly way-marked all of the way up. A track forks to the left which leads onto the open land of the Garth.

15    Garth Hill: The summit is 307 metres (just over 1,000 feet) marked by a trig point on a substantial mound From here you have views northwards to Pen y Fan, the highest mountain in South Wales, and, to the south to the Bristol Channel and the coasts of Somerset and Devon. This mound is said to be a bronze age burial mound, a number of which are scattered at the top, but those of you who go to the cinema know that it was created much more recently and in a much more interesting way!

16    Ascend bearing slightly to the right with the trig point, which marks the summit, up to your left. Set off right along the ridge to the eastern edge of the Garth from where you will have fine views down the Taff valley to Cardiff and the sea. Where the track goes down to the right at a marker post swing left along a clear path and then, almost immediately, turn right onto a path which leads steeply down to the visible Lan Farm. Make for the left hand corner of the wood when it appears. Go through the gate there and follow the footpath along the edge of the wood until it drops down to a track. Turn sharp right along the track and follow it until it executes a sharp turn left. Carry straight on here on a path and continue to the edge of the wood to meet the road. Turn left and walk down to the Gwaelod y Garth Inn.

17    At the Inn turn right and opposite a white house there is a metalled footpath on the left which winds steeply down. This leads to a footbridge over the Taff and into Taffs Well. Keep straight on for a short distance until you meet a main road, turn right and immediately left into Sycamore Street to reach another footbridge which leads over the railway line. After a few metres turn left along the road (following the Ridgeway sign on a lamp post) and then onto a road which comes in sharply from the right. This allows you to cross the A470 dual carriageway. Follow this road to where a track meets it on the right. Take this track which goes along with a football pitch on your right. Turn left past a red-brick house and chain-link fence on your right and follow the path through a wood with a stream on your right. Up steps to cross a road and continue until you reach a bridge. Go under the bridge and turn immediately left to gain access onto a path which leads up onto the bridge itself. This is the Taff Trail (beware of cyclists). Turn left and follow the Taff Trail south with the Taff valley or your right. The path begins to climb gently and shortly after flattening out comes to a fork by a bridge on your right.

18    Take left fork and follow path up through the forest for about 2 kilometres, as you join a wider forest road leading past a picnic site and car park, to the road. Go up the road to the left until just before the public house, the Black Cock. Turn right then left behind the pub to pick up waymarking over a stile. Then half right over a field and over next visible stile. Over 2 more in quick succession and then turn right just before a barn in the right hand corner of the field. Half left up field to visible way-marked post. Turn right through the woods at the post, then downhill over 3 more stiles to reach track at bottom. Turn left onto track, then over stile and in 100 metres down through a wooded area and over a stream to reach the gate of the Ridgeway Golf Club. Past the 5th tee and straight over the course to the end of a stand of new small trees and the beginning of a copse of larger trees. Turn left, over stream and half right to cross to a white marker post on the other side of the fairway. You can see a stile in the fence ahead. Leave the golf course by climbing this stile.

19    Climb up the path through the bracken until it ends on another path at a waymark post. Turn right here, passing to the right of a bungalow, then turn right onto a track. Caerphilly Mountain car park will now be In view.

20    From the car park take a footpath north-east and follow it until you are walking along a track with a boundary on the right. There are good views of Caerphilly with Its castle to the left. Keep along the boundary on entering wood and then along the ridge, ignoring paths to the left, until the path drops down to join a forestry track. Turn right along this and then immediately left. Follow this track until it bears left with a gate visible ahead. Turn right, just before the gate, and keep straight on passing tracks to the right. Follow the path as it bears left down an old brick path. Turn right onto track and 30 metres further on turn left onto a narrow path and cross a stream. Follow the path to the road and turn right along the latter. After about 400 metres the road bends round to the right. Turn left into an old road here. Follow this until it curves to the left and go through a gate, following the track for 100 metres to turn sharp right onto an access track leading to the Rhymney Valley Ridgeway Walk, signed with a blue arrow.

21    Follow this up the hill, for about 450 metres past a hazel grove and through a beechwood to join the Ridgeway Walk just before a gate. Turn sharp left and follow the Ridgeway Walk signs for just over 3 kilometres.

22    The path affords good views of the Rhymney Valley, skirts a disused quarry, crosses some open farmland at Cefn Onn farm and passes through mature beechwoods at Coed Cefn Onn.

23    After passing a large pylon beside the path to the right, walk a further 20 metres and turn right at a waymarking post. Follow the path past some old lime kilns and continue down Craig y Llan with a steep drop on the the left to join another path at the bottom. Almost straight over this path and through a kissing gate alongside a stile, not over stile. Soon left over another stile then over 2 footbridges to cross stream. Now on the valley floor, with the stream on your left to gate and then stile leading into woods ahead. Quarter right and follow this path as it makes its way gently upwards through the wood until it reaches a gate at the boundary of the wood and open fields. Cross into the field and follow the direction given by yellow waymarkers. The path is not visible on the ground. Go through the end of a. line of trees and make for a white house at the far end of the field. You will have a wooden fence and farm buildings on your right and as you approach the field boundary you will see a kissing gate which allows you access to the road.

24    Turn left onto the road and shortly after the house you reach a cross-roads. In front of you are 2 parallel tracks; the one on the right leads to a house and is marked "Private", so take the one on the left. This is the Rhymney Valley Ridgeway Footpath. It takes you past the house and then follows a stone wall and then fence on the right for about 800 metres. Shortly after passing some farm buildings, below you on your left, you will reach a clearing with a large green shed which gives access on your right to a track on the other side of the wall. Turn onto the track and follow it to the left. The track swings to the right past a large house to your left. Keep following the track which has a fence on the right and this leads to the back of Ruperra Castle and its grounds also on the right

25    Walk along clearly defined, well maintained track for 2 kilometres until it joins the Michaelston y Fedw to Draethen road. Turn right onto this road and go down to the river bridge at Michaelston.

26    With your back to the bridge walk up the road to the village. Just after the drive of the last house on the left is an opening in the bushes giving access to a stile. Cross into a field go half left and ascend to a gate not far from the top left hand corner. Go up again to a second gate at the top left hand corner of this field. Go through this gate and then immediately right through a further gate into another field. Proceed straight across the field to a stile on the opposite side. This gives access to a lane and on the opposite side, slightly to the right, is a stile painted white. Cross this and follow the yellow directional marker across this field to a marker post indicating gap in to hedge. Keep straight on passing just to the left of an isolated beech tree on the ridge top.  Descend to a road and a further stile on the other side. Follow the yellow directional marker to a footbridge to cross the M4.

27    Bear slightly left on the other side to a stile and then slightly right to a white marker post showing the crossing point for a stream. Carry straight on up to the ridge and down the other side to reach a subway to go under the A48(M). Turn right to reach a stile into yet another field. Go diagonally right to a gate which provides access to Mill Lane.

28    Go about 40 metres down the road and take the second entrance on the left. Go past a cottage on the right, cross a footbridge over a stream, to a stile just ahead of you. A further 20 metres or so on is another stile which gives access to the car park at the back of the Coach and Horses Inn.

29    Proceed down to the car park exit and cross the A48 dual carriageway, (taking great care as the traffic here moves very fast). Directly ahead of you is a lane leading to Walk Farm.

30    Go down to the end of the lane past a farmhouse on your left hand side, when you will see a gate a few metres on the left. Follow the field boundary on your left over 2 stiles. After the second turn right and follow the field boundary on your right hand side, over a sequence of 2 footbridges and stiles. immediately after the second of these is a further, more substantial, footbridge. Cross this and turn left and follow the field boundary until it reaches a large drainage channel, the Pwllbargod Reen. Keep the Reen on your left and go through 2 gates marked GB, for Gelli-ber Farm. Cross the Reen after the second and go straight down the field to a gate and footbridge giving access to a minor road.

31    Turn left and follow the road which runs along the Drenewydd Reen for 1 kilometre. At its end turn right into Hawse Lane and follow this road for almost 2 kilometres, going over the main Cardiff-London railway line and past Hawse Farm on your right. At the end of the road turn left onto the B4239. Go 300 metres along the road to reach Outfall Lane on your right, with a finger post marking a bridleway to the seawall and reading "Seawall 1/4 km", it is actually more like 800 metres. When you have done that, congratulations, you have completed the Capital Walk.