Green Travel Guide to Clwydian Range & Dee Valley
Words by Richard Hammond, Sarah Baxter, David Atkinson, Florence Fortnam.
Film produced by Green Traveller.
Artwork for Green Traveller's Guides by Tina Smith and Mark Edwards.
Clwydian Range and Dee Valley Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty forms the dramatic upland frontier of north Wales, one of Britain’s unmissable scenic highlights.
This specially protected landscape covers 390 square kilometres of windswept hilltops, heather moorland, limestone crags and wooded valleys, almost touching the coast at Prestatyn Hillside in the north and stretching south to brooding Moel Fferna, its highest point at 630 metres. The area embraces some of Britain’s most glorious countryside, also the World Heritage Site of Pontcysyllte Aqueduct and Llangollen Canal.
Undiscovered by many yet easy to explore, the Clwydian Range and Dee Valley AONB offers fascinating heritage, colourful culture, delicious fare and the warmest welcome. Clwydian Range is a remarkable chain of purple heather-clad summits topped by Britain’s most strikingly situated hillforts.
Beneath imposing mountains crossed by the Horseshoe Pass, Dee Valley winds its way through historic Llangollen, where Wales welcomes the world at the International Eisteddfod. Offa’s Dyke National Trail is an ever-present pathway along this land’s spine, recalling the ancient margins of Wales. It links up the area’s special places, as well as connecting with the southern marches and Wales Coast Path beyond.
What Green Traveller's writers discovered in Clwydian Range & Dee Valley AONB
When the Dee Valley was added to the Clwydian Range AONB, it became the largest area of outstanding natural beauty in Wales. From the purple-heather’d moorland to limestone crags, from rushing river to scenic valley, the area is awash with natural beauty and its unspoilt landscape provides home for innumerable flora and fauna. There are over 200 miles of rights of way routes, so the region's delights are easily accessible. Unmissable, iconic and awe-inspiring are the Offa’s Dyke Path National Trail that runs the entire length of the area and the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct World Heritage Site.
Stay, Eat, See & Do
Our pick of places across Clwydian Range & Dee Valley AONB
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Click on the coloured icons for more information about each listing
Green = Places to stay; Blue = Places to eat; Yellow = Attractions; Purple = Activities
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The Clwydian Range and Dee Valley is the largest AONB in Wales
The Pontcysyllte Aqueduct & Canal World Heritage Site is 11 miles long and is the largest aqueduct in Britain
More than a quarter of the AONB is open access
The AONB is home to 645 listed buildings and 95 scheduled ancient monuments
The Offa’s Dyke Path National Trail runs the entire length of the Clwydian Range and Dee Valley AONB from Prestatyn in the north to Chirk in the south
More than a quarter of the AONB is internationally important for its habitat and is designated Special Area of Conservation
The AONB is home to 10 Iron Age Hillforts
324km of Rights of Way are promoted routes