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Celebrate National Walking Month with May walks in Mid Wales

The type of view walkers can expect on Pumlumon if it’s a clear day during the Sabrina Walk.

To celebrate National Walking Month in May, there is a series of events taking place in Mid Wales, which has so much to offers walkers all the year round, as the seasons change.

Walking is one of the easiest ways to improve physical and mental health and stay connected to our community, helping people feel less lonely and isolated. By swapping a short drive for a short walk, you can also help reduce air pollution, congestion and road danger, save yourself money and keep active in the process.

Did you know that a 20-minute walk can reduce the risk of a number of preventable health conditions, including certain cancers, depression, heart disease and Type 2 diabetes?

Here’s a list of walks compiled by MWT Cymru (Mid Wales Tourism) to get you out in the glorious countryside of Powys, Ceredigion and Southern Snowdonia.

Bala Lake, one of the attractions of The Bala Challenge Charity Walks.
Image: © Crown copyright (2023) Cymru Wales

The Bala Challenge Charity Walks – May 13

 Join the Bala & Penllyn Rotary Club for a scenic or challenge walk. Seize the opportunity to experience the marvellous scenery of southern Snowdonia with views of Bala Lake, the largest natural lake in Wales, surrounded by three mountain ranges (Berwyn, Aran and Arenig), and encounter the local wildlife, including buzzards and red kites.

The route has been chosen to maximise the views over a variety of terrain including farmland, moorland and forest. Participants may wish to raise funds for their own charity, good cause, or recognised club or just enjoy the walk knowing that the entry fee will contribute to charities such as North Wales Air Ambulance, Mountain Search and Rescue Services and other local good causes.

There is a choice of route and distance covering 20, 14 and eight miles.

There are different ways to explore the Montgomery Canal. Here canoeists take to the water but you can also join a Guided Wildlife Walk with Montgomeryshire Wildlife Trust on May 14.

Montgomery Canal Guided Wildlife Walk –  May 14 10am to 1pm

Organised by Montgomeryshire Wildlife Trust as part of the Canals, Communities and Wellbeing project, this walk along the scenic Montgomery Canal will be led by passionate local conservationist and experienced walking guide, Andy Davies.

Suitable for all ages and abilities, the relaxed rambles are the perfect way to find out more about what makes this waterway so special for wildlife. Walkers will discover interesting facts about particular birds, mammals and amphibians that use the canal, as well as connecting with nature.

Folk and Footpaths – May 22

Strata Florida, Pontrhydfendigaid, Ceredigion SY25 6ES

10am until 5pm

Cost: £70 with lunch from Y Talbot , Tregaron included

Book at: [email protected]

Immerse yourself in the history and culture of Strata Florida. Explore the rich history of this fascinating site on foot, on a guided walk led by Arfon Hughes, and be captivated by folk performances by Owen Shiers, drawing inspiration from the ancient landscape

Strata Florida grand medieval abbey is where generations of Welsh princes are buried. The abbey of Strata Florida – Latin for ‘Vale of Flowers’ – has stood on lush meadows beside the banks of the river Teifi since 1201.

It was established by white-robed Cistercian monks as part of a movement that spread like a tidal wave across the whole of western Europe in the early Middle Ages. Soon it became the most famous church in Wales after St Davids, a place of pilgrimage and a linchpin of Welsh culture. 

The 2023 Sabrina Walk – May 27

Since its inaugural launch in 2006, the Sabrina Walk has been popular in the walking community across the UK and is a firm favourite of walkers who frequent the Cambrian Mountains in the spring.

The 25 mile Sarn Sabrina can be undertaken as a one day challenge on this fully supported event, or used as an established trail that can be walked over a number of days to savour the beautiful views the route encompasses.

The Semi Sabrina is a slightly less challenging, 12-mile circular route from Llanidloes taking in Glyndwr’s Way and  Llyn Clywedog with equally spectacular views on route

The River Severn, the longest river in the UK, rises nine miles to the west of Llanidloes, high up on the slopes of Pumlumon, the highest point in the central range of the Cambrian Mountains.

Dyfi Walking Tours – May

Professional tourist guide Arfon Hughes will lead the Dr John Davies Mallwyd Tour and Owain Glyndwr and Machynlleth Tour every Friday, Saturday and Sunday during May.

Dr Davies was a 17th century vicar, translator of the Welsh Bible and architect of three bridges in the wilds of Dyfi Valley. The walk is of three hours plus, meeting at the Brigands Inn, Mallwyd. Booking in advance only with a minimum four people paying full price. Bespoke tours can be organised for schools and parties

The Owain Glyndwr and Machynlleth Tour includes the history of Owain Glyndwr, Parliament House and Machynlleth town. Owain Glyndwr was the last native Welshman to hold the title ‘Prince of Wales’ in the 15th Century.

Most of the tour is on level ground, starting at Parliament House and is available by booking in advance only with a minimum four people paying full price. Bespoke tours ca be arranged for schools and parties.

Try Dinky Donkey Walks in the Brecon Beacons.

Good Day Out – available during May

Tel: 01874 749092

Good Day Out offers two walks with animals, both of which run throughout May.

Dinky Donkey Walks in the Brecon Beacons

Spend a couple of tranquil hours in the company of Maverick and Goose, two Miniature Mediterranean Donkeys with big characters, taking a stroll through Brecon Beacons farmland with views towards Pen y Fan and the central Beacons. Walk through stunning bluebell fields in late May / early June.

All Good Day Out activities and experiences donate to a good cause with every experience attendance – in this case, Brecon Mountain Rescue.

Piggy Walk with a Pig-Nic

Take friendly KuneKune pigs for an amble along a scenic valley, then enjoy a pig-nic of tea and cakes. The pet pigs love snuffling in hedgerows then coming back for treats as well as scratches and interaction along the way. Although children can attend, it’s mainly adults who do.

A donation for every experience attendance will be made to Retiremutt, a charity that helps support retired police dogs with medical bills.

Join in groups from £35 per person or private walks from £140 for up to four people. Larger groups also possible. Walks are available during the month, apart from May 27 and 28 

Alpaca My Boots – available during May

When you arrive at the farm, it won’t take you long to spot the herd of affable alpacas roaming freely in the field. They love making new friends and will often trot over to say hello.

Visitors are matched with their own alpaca, who’ll accompany them across the fields and hills on a scenic trek. Countryside views continue whilst crossing the fields and hills, eventually reaching a trig point with epic 360 degree views of the Brecon Beacons National Park.

Treks every Saturday and Sunday during May.