Top 5 Drives

Published on 2023-11-13 / By Boo@Trefeddian

As well as many walking routes around the Trefeddian, there are some wonderful drives in the area from which you can take to view scenic mountain ranges, lakes and towns. We have put together 5 top drives from the hotel that you can follow.

coast road

Route 1
Meirion Mill & Dolgellau

Our first route covers 56 miles and is a circular route from the hotel through Machynlleth to Dolgellau and back along the coast road. Take a left out of the hotel and follow the A493 into Machynlleth where you will need to turn left at the clock towards Mallwyd. Follow the A470 towards Dolgellau. At Dinas Mawddwy you will find Meirion Mill or stop off at Dolgellau and have a look around or take on one of the many walks in the area that are all listed in our walks file. Take the A493 along the coast road towards Aberdyfi and the Trefeddian. Fairbourne is where you will find the narrow gauge railway or stop at Tywyn’s Holgate’s Ice Cream Shop for a famous Honey Ice Cream.

talyllyn road

Route 2
Corris & Talyllyn Lake

From the hotel head towards Machynlleth. On reaching the Dyfi bridge, take a left towards Corris. Just before Corris you will find the Centre for Alternative Technology and a bit further along Corris Caverns.  The centre offers many unusual craft shops to stroll around, King Arthurs Labyrinth (an underground boat ride into spectacular caverns) and Corris Mine Explorers. There are lots of different things to explore here, Corris is also home to the Corris Railway & Museum. From here, head towards Dolgellau and take a left onto the B4405 to go over the Talyllyn pass and take in the dramatic scenery as you drive down towards Talyllyn Lake before re-joining the A493 along the coast back to the hotel. A beautiful drive covering 34 miles.

aber road
Route 3
Llanidloes & Aberystwyth

This one is a longer route covering around 85 miles. Take the A493 towards Machynlleth and turn left at the clock. Take the turning on the left signposted Dylife. This drive through the Plynlimon hills shows wild wales with gorges, lakes, waterfalls and steep valleys. At Staylittle you can either stay on this road or bear right to drive around Llyn Clywedog, the tallest concrete dam in Britain standing at 235ft and holding 11,000 million gallons of water. There are a number of viewing points along this route. You will then find the town of Llanidloes with its rich silver mining past. From Llanidloes take the A470 towards Llangurig then follow the A44 towards Aberystwyth. Lots of options on this road including Llywernog Silver & Lead Mine, turning left towards the Valley of Rheidol Railway or the Magic of Life Butterfly House. The next town on the drive is Aberystwyth with its many attractions here, or alternatively, follow the one-way system through the town past the university on the A487 signposted Machynlleth and back to Aberdyfi.

lake vyrnwy road
Route 4 
Three Lakes

This scenic drive covers a total of 100 miles and takes in three beautiful lakes along the way. It’s well worth taking a packed lunch to enjoy by one of these! As you leave the hotel, turn left through Tywyn. Just after you get into Bryncrug turn right onto the B4405 towards Tal-y-Llyn. This is the first lake on your drive. Tal-y-Llyn is 220 acres in size and sits underneath Cader Idris, which is 2927ft high. Once passed this lake, head towards Dolgellau and on the bypass turn right signposted Bala. Bala lake is situated beneath the Aran & Berwyn mountains and is 4 miles long and is the largest natural body of water in Wales. There is the Bala Lake Railway, a narrow gauge steam train that runs the length of the southern shore. Drive to the end of Bala Lake then turn right onto the B4391 towards Lake Vyrnwy. This is minor road so care is needed on the 8 miles to the lake. You can drive around the whole lake which has many nature trails on the way along with wooden sculptures. This lake holds 13 thousand million gallons of water and is 12 miles around. It has a masonry dam that was built in the 1880’s and at the time was the largest dam in Britain. There is a visitor’s centre, RSPB shop, 3D centre & Craft shops.  At the other side of the lake turn off on the B4303 signposted back to Bala, before taking the A494 and back to the hotel on the same road as you went.

penmaenpool toll bridge
Route 5
Porthmadog, Harlech & Barmouth

The last drive of around 95 miles takes you to the harbour town of Porthmadog, Harlech with its famous castle and returning through Barmouth and covers 95 miles. From the hotel, turn right towards Bryncrug through Tywyn and right again onto the B4405 towards Tal-y-Llyn. Drive passed the lake and head turn onto the A470 and bypass Dolgellau. At the roundabout take the exit signposted Porthmadog A487 and at the following roundabout take the A497. Continue until you reach Porthmadog. You then head towards Harlech on the toll bridge and turn right into Harlech. Harlech is a small picturesque town with a famous castle which when it was built in the late 13th century it was situated at the edge of the sea. From Harlech, follow the A496 to Barmouth, a town on the mouth of the river Mawddach. From here continue on the road until the signpost for the Penmaenpool Toll Bridge. Cross the bridge, turn right and follow the A493 coast road back to the hotel.

All the information on these drives are available in the walks and drives books that we have in each of our lounges and our walks are also online should you wish to combine both.

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