Nantlle Ridge

Key information: Nantlle Ridge

  • A stunner: a long, high, winding, view-laden ridge in the west of high Snowdonia.
  • Famed as one of Wales' finest walks. 

Walkopedia rating

  • Walkopedia rating88.5
  • Beauty32
  • Natural interest15.5
  • Human interest8
  • Charisma33
  • Negative points0
  • Total rating88.5

Vital Statistics

  • Length: 13km/8 miles; 5-7 hrs
  • Maximum Altitude: 734m
  • Level of Difficulty: Strenuous


The Nantlle Ridge is a stunner, a long (13km), high, winding, view-laden, ridge in the west of high Snowdonia which is famed as one of Wales' finest walks. But it is surprisingly empty considering that.

Beginning at Rhyd-Ddu on the A4085 south-east of Caernarfon, you cross some low ground then climb steeply to gain the ridge at the rocky summit of Y Garn, which is surrounded by cliffs to north and west. Here the excitement begins, the ridge leading initially southward and quickly narrowing to occasional teeters and easy scrambles above the western cliffs. The views towards Snowdon to the east, Anglesey to the north and the Lleyn Peninsula to the west just become better as you climb to two further summits, swinging westward and exchanging rock for luxurious grassy slopes. Really wonderful.

Drop and cross an excitingly narrow neck to climb gently back up to a mountaintop obelisk (to Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee), then descend gently then drop steeply to a col, to climb a craggy slope behind a spine (climbable by thrill-seekers) to the high point of Craig Cwm Silyn at - gasp - 734m. A long (1.5km), flattish mountaintop takes you to a final summit, which is followed by a westward steep and rough descent to meet a gentler track which takes you north-west round at mid-level behind a low hill from Llyn Cwm Dulyl lake to the roadhead near Cors y Llyn.

A truly worthwhile and delightful walk on a reasonable day. Not much point in low cloud.

A reasonable head for heights is needed, but this is not a dangerous or highly exposed trail on a clearish day.

This is demanding walking in mountains with uncertain weather. Come fully prepared, and consider whether tackling it is sensible in poor conditions.

This walk is well written up in the Cicerone book.

See our Snowdonia page for helpful practical information, photos ideas and any risks to consider.

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Safety and problems: All walks have inherent risks and potential problems, and many of the walks featured on this website involve significant risks, dangers and problems. Problems of any sort can arise on any walk. This website does not purport to identify any (or all) actual or potential risks, dangers and problems that may relate to any particular walk.

Any person who is considering undertaking this walk should do careful research and make their own assessment of the risks, dangers and possible problems involved. They should also go to “Important information” for further important information.

Anyone planning an expedition to this place should see further important information about this walk.


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