The small but unspoilt traditional settlement of Llwyngwril lies on a ledge at the mouth of the river Gwril, encircled on three sides by mountains which rise steeply behind the village, and on the fourth side by the sea.
Llwyngwril has a long history, with evidence in the form of ruins and standing stones of human settlement here at least 2700 years ago, located a mile or so inland from the village, settled higher up the valley when the level of the sea was higher here than it is now.
From above the village a 13th century stone fish trap can still be spotted at low tide stretching across the bay.
A mile south of Llwyngwril, off the coastpath but accessible to those who stay the night here, is the little medieval church at Llangelynin, first mentioned in 1254. Beyond the church is Salt Rock, a reference to the days when smugglers brought in salt, which was taxed, and sold it illicitly here. Just after Salt Rock is Glyndwr’s Cave where the Welsh chieftain Owain Glyndwr is said to have hidden from his English pursuers.
Between village and shoreline on the ‘Quaker’s Path’ is the Friends Burial Ground, dating from 1646. By 1876 the Quakers had left, and Wesleyans were granted the right to use the burial ground here. At the shoreline, north of the path, is a large ‘erratic’, an errant lump of basalt carried here by ice (the nearest basalt outcrop is on the slopes of Cader Idris 12.5 kilometres away). Alternatively take the riverside path a little father south to the shingle beach, where dolphins, porpoise and seals are regular visitors.
You’ll find a small but well-stocked village shop for essential supplies. For food and liquid refreshment, head to the historic Garthangharad Arms Hotel, at the geographical and social heart of the village, which has welcomed weary travellers over its doorstep for hundreds of years.