The Dolgellau to Barmouth Mawddach Trail as featured in Julia Bradbury's Railway Walks

Mawddach Trail Guide Book
Mawddach Trail Guide Book

Follow the Mawddach Trail with Jacky and Graham O'Hanlon's 22 page guide detailing the history and points of interest that you will encounter along the beautiful 'Railway Walk' along the Mawddach Estuary.

Explore The Mawddach Trail

The Mawddach Trail footpath walk and cycle route winds for 9.5 miles (15km) along the disused railway track on the southern edge of the spectacular Mawddach estuary. Whilst the trail can be joined at several points it starts at the picturesque market town of Dolgellau and finishes by crossing the iconic railway bridge over the mouth of the estuary into Barmouth.
Mawddach Trail Map - Railway Walk from Dollgellau to Barmouth in Wales

OS Landranger Active Map 124 Porthmadog and Dolgellau

The Mawddach Trail is a stunning multi-use path following the old disused railway line along the edge of the beautiful Mawddach estuary in Southern Snowdonia.  The almost exclusively traffic–free route, which is owned by the Snowdonia National Park, is clearly marked, and can be easily followed.  It is essentially flat, has a fairly even surface and for most of its length is at least 3 metres wide, and as such it is suitable for walkers, cyclists and wheelchair users. The North Wales Society for the Blind has produced an audio guide to the Mawddach Trail which is available to download as a zip file - Click here for more details.

The trail stretches for fifteen kilometres (nine and a half miles) between Dolgellau (starting at the car park besides the bridge) and Barmouth and can be joined at several points, including Pont y Wernddu, Penmaenpool/Taicynhaeaf, Arthog and Morfa Mawddach. If you fancy something a little longer, the Mawddach Trail forms the final section of the South Snowdonia Greenway, a 43 km route starting at Llyn Trawsfynydd and travelling through moorlands and forests to reach down to the sea at Barmouth. 

The exit from Barmouth Toll Bridge to the busy A496 is very steep and joins the road on a blind corner with no footpath. Everyone needs to take care here.

The gates on the Mawddach Trail can be a problem for less able bike ridersA series of ill-conceived bike gates have slowly been replaced, but one or two remain to present krypton factor challenges for anyone towing a bike trailer or tag-along; will YOU work out the best way to get through before the day is over?

In return for these small inconveniences, you get access to one of the most spectacular Railway Walks that Britain has to offer. There are stunning views across to Diffwys and the Rhinogs, and up the estuary to Y Garn and the Arans beyond Dolgellau.  Pretty much the whole of the estuary is listed as a site of special scientific interest, there are two RSPB reserves (Taicynhaeaf and Arthog), and a whole host of historical sites to ponder over as you make your way through this beautiful landscape.

Bus services run on either side of the estuary, and there are train stations at Morfa Mawddach and Barmouth. On selected dates through the summer a bike-bus ( operates along the full length of the South Snowdonia Greenway including either end of the Mawddach Trail. If your cycling legs are not quite ready for the full Mawddach Trail 'there and back' trip, why not leave the car behind, take the bus to the opposite end, and ride back at your leisure. Equally, if you need a bit more of a challenge, join the Greenway at one of the stops beyond Dolgellau for a longer ride.

To find out more about the social, industrial and natural history of the estuary, why not  buy a detailed guide to the Mawddach Trail

Digital Maps

Digital mapping software allows you plan your walk and download the route information to your GPS unit. Maps are usually Ordnance Survey 1:50k or 1:25k, and there are a number of software brands available. We provide a free download of the Mawddach Trail route in two versions; 'Anquet' and as a GPX file, (the cross platform format for sharing GPS data). Both versions contain the View Points to be used in conjunction with The Mawddach Trail Guide

FREE GPS Route Download - The Mawddach Trail (Anquet)

FREE GPS Route Download - The Mawddach Trail (.gpx)

Digital Mapping PC Software & Maps
Anquet Wales (PC) | Anquet CD OL018 Harlech, Porthmadog & Bala | Anquet CD OL023 Cadair Idris & Bala Lake


Railway Walks DVD
The much acclaimed Dolgellau to Barmouth Mawddach Trail was recently featured as the Wales episode of the BBC's "Railway Walks" series which has now been released on DVD - Railway Walks with Julia Bradbury

Railway Walks with Julia Bradbury DVD
DVD Railway Walks with Julia Bradbury
Julia Bradbury Railway Walks book
Julia Bradbury Railway Walks Book

Railway Walks Book
The six walks featured in this book follow the old railway tracks, overgrown cuttings and ancient viaducts which are the legacy of 'The Beeching Axe'. Julia Bradbury looks at how the rise and fall of the railways has altered the lives of communities across the country. Julia Bradbury's Railway Walks book

About the Mawddach Trail | Mawddach Trail Maps & Guides | Local Services & Accommodation

Local Walks: Mawddach Way | Panorama Walk | New Precipice Walk | Cadair Idris | Torrent Walk | Railway Walk | Cambrian Trailways

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