Walking the Teifi Estuary: Cardigan to Cilgerran

From stunning historic attractions such as Cilgerran and Cardigan Castles to a wealth of wildlife, the Teifi marshes and a multi purpose path, this 4½ mile circular route has something for everyone. 

  • The ruins of St Dogmael's Abbey in Pembrokeshire
    St Dogmael's Abbey, Pembrokeshire

    A spiritual and cultural powerhouse for 400 years, and home to the Tironensian Order of monks, St Dogmael's Abbey is a must for your visit to Cardigan. Founded in 1113, it had great wealth through the patronage of Baron Robert Fitzmartin and was famed for its magnificent library. Stroll around the Abbey for free and soak up the calming atmosphere. Visit the Coach House Museum to admire the carved stones and enjoy a cuppa in the cafe.

  • Cardigan Castle, the site of the first Eisteddfod in Wales in 1176, is currently having a makeover and is closed to the public; however you can walk around Cardigan and admire it from afar. When you consider the age of the castle; it’s not surprising it needs a bit of renovating. Surprisingly the castle walls hid a 19th century house called Castle Green House for a number of years. From Spring 2014 you can experience sleeping there.

  • A pair of water buffalo grazing at the Welsh Wildlife Centre, Cilgerran in Pembrokeshire
    Water Buffalo at the Welsh Wildlife Centre, Pembrokeshire by SiouxieSue

    Teifi Marshes is a part of one of the largest areas of common reed in Wales and a haven for wildlife. Watch out for otters, kingfishers, hen harriers and curlews as they seek out food along the estuary. The Welsh Wildlife Centre is the perfect place to spot water buffalo, osprey and dragonflies; you can even hire binoculars to help you get up close and personal. Using a wheelchair or buggy? Try one of the specially developed trails suitable for all.

  • Welsh Wildlife Centre
    Welsh Wildlife Centre

    Seek out a local pub or tea shop in Cardigan or Cilgerran or visit the aptly named Glasshouse Cafe at the Welsh Wildlife Centre for a stunning panoramic view of the Teifi Marshes. Cardigan has a daily market and a farmers market every second Thursday in Pwllhai, where you can buy fresh local produce. In the summer, the Guildhall hosts a local craft market as well. Wherever you stop you will find a friendly welcome and great food.

  • View across the outer ward to the towers of Cilgerran Castle in Pembrokeshire
    Cilgerran Castle, Pembrokeshire

    Cilgerran Castle is a great stopping off point along your walk and is dog friendly, as long as you keep it on a lead. Standing on a high crag above the gorge it was the perfect location to ward off attacks from marauders. Walk the walls, explore the 13th century medieval structure and admire the views along the Teifi Estuary before heading back to Cardigan.

  • Visitor browsing artifacts and coracles at the National Coracle Centre in Pembrokeshire
    National Coracle CentrePembrokeshire

    Teifi Valley slate can be seen all around this area, including Cilgerran Castle. It has been used since medieval times and shipped down the gorge to be exported around the world until approx 1938. The beautiful gorge is home to a wide array of wildlife and flowers. Following the gorge can be hazardous and slippery, instead why not visit the National Coracle Centre in Newcastle Emlyn to experience it or take a trip on an open canoe.  

Find out about appropriate clothing and footwear as well as more info on protecting and enjoying the countryside in the Countryside Code.

Try the routes on Natural Resources Wales’ interactive map Outdoor Wales onLine or you can download this route via the ViewRanger app.