The Clwydian Hills stretch for about 20 miles, rising between the Vale of Clwyd to the west and the Dee Estuary to the east. This line of undulating hills have steep slopes to their west providing excellent views as far as Snowdonia. In contrast to the moorland character of the summits the surrounding valleys are lush and green.
A wide variety of geology, which covers a wide range of geological periods, ranges form the Silurian rocks of the ridge to carboniferous limestone in the Alun Valley. The result of this geological variety is a wide range of distinct landscapes within the small area of this AONB. The heather moorland on the high ridge is in contrast to the hedged fields and coppiced woodland of the lower slopes and valleys. The limestone rocks are exposed in places adding to the scenic interest.
The Clwydian Hills is rated highly by archaeologists with a superb series of Iron Age hill-forts crowning its summits. In fact this is the largest concentration of hillforts in Western Europe with six forts on the crest of the ridge. This rich heritage has resulted in part of the Range being listed in the Register of Landscapes of Outstanding Historic Interest in Wales. In terms of natural habitat, the AONB's heather moorland and 'ffrith' are protected as a diminishing habitat resource.
Much of the land within the AONB is in private hands although the high moorland is largely publicly owned. Land use varies from hill sheep farming to the mixed dairy, cattle and arable farms in the surrounding valleys. Mineral extraction, including limestone and sand and gravel is important to the local economy. Another source of income is commercial forestry. There are no towns of importance within the AONB although there are a number of attractive villages with many houses built from local stone.
Many people pass the Clwydian Hills on their way to Snowdonia and the North Wales Coast. However the AONB receives large numbers of visitors, particularly at its two country parks (Moel Famau and Loggerheads). The Offa's Dyke National Trail, running from Chepstow to Prestatyn (which lies just outside the area boundary) follows almost the entire length of the ridge. In addition excellent waymarking of footpaths and bridleways provide many options for circular walks to suit everyone's abilities.
For more information on this area visit the
official web site for Clwydian Hills
Regional Walking Guides
A full list of "Where to Walk" Walking Guides can be found at List of Regional Walking Guides.
Cicerone Press offer a range of books and eBooks offering guides to all the popular walking areas and long-distance trails in Britain and overseas. Their illustrated guides feature walks, information and maps to help you make the most of the outdoors. 25% off all printed guides to 30th June 2017. Explore Cicerone's Catalogue
Dark Peak Walks - Guidebook to 40 walks in the Dark Peak area of the Peak District National Park. 35 circular routes for most abilities, from 8km to 19km, around Edale, Marsden, Fairholmes, Baslow and Castleton, including Kinder Scout and Mam Tor, and 5 longer (25km to 45km) routes highlighting the best of the Gritstone Edges, High Moorland and Deep Valleys. More information
Enter the age of digital mapping and enjoy accurate navigation when out walking on the hills and in the countryside. Ordnance Survey's FLASH SALE is offering a wide range of GPS receivers, many with Ordnance Survey 1:25k and 1:50k digital mapping, with substantial reductions of up to £90. Information and prices go to Ordnance Survey GPS Sale
Follow Walking Britain for the latest news.
Convenient 1:25000 OS maps in booklet form covering the National Trails of Britain. More info.
A durable, lightweight, stylish and compact alternative to traditional waterproofs ideal for walkers. More info.
Click for a simple guide of how to start walking. Includes a guide on how to select your walks.