Elan Valley Trail

Following the former Birmingham Corporation railway line, the Elan Valley Trail is the perfect cycling route for everyone of all ages and abilities. Whether an absolute novice or devotee of the two-wheeler, enjoy one of the most beautiful areas of Wales while staying fit and healthy.

The trail takes you around the reservoirs of Caban-coch, Garreg-Ddu, and Penygarreg.


The trail is located to the west of Rhayader found on the River Wye.

Let’s Pedal

The Elan Valley Trail begins on the B4518 west of Rhayader in Cwmdeuddwr (LD6 5AS).

Follow the cycle and pedestrian path which climbs over the impressive Rhayader Tunnel, a Radnorshire Wildlife Trust Reserve home to many species of bat. Half a mile later cross the road, continue straight along the Elan Valley Trail path.

At the next junction you continue along the trail to the dams and reservoirs, or descend to the Elan Valley Visitor Centre.

From the northern end of Garreg Ddu Reservoir, the trail climbs steadily, providing amazing views of the surrounding valleys and the four reservoirs that feed Birmingham’s water supply. Continue up to the finish at Craig Goch Dam where toilets are available before making the return journey. Most of the trail has a tarmac surface, but the northern end is not surfaced.

Route Distance

FromToDistance (Miles)Distance (Km)
CwmdeuddwrElan Valley Visitor Centre3.55.6
Elan Valley Visitor CentreGarreg Ddu Dam1.52.4
Garreg Ddu DamPenygarreg Reservoir2.253.6
Penygarreg ReservoirCraig Goch Dam1.52.4
Craig Goch DamCwmdeuddwr914.5

NB Distances are approximate.


You will find a number of refreshment stops and public houses available at:

Rhayader and Elan Valley Visitor Centre.


Toilets are located at:

Rhayader, Elan Valley Visitor Centre and Craig Goch Dam.

Cycle Hire available at:

Elan Valley Visitor Centre

Tourist information available at:

Rhayader and Elan Valley Visitor Centre

How to get here

By Car

The Elan Valley Trail begins and ends at Cwmdeuddwr near Rhayader located in the centre of Powys, mid-Wales, north of the Brecon Beacons National Park. The town is found at the junction of the A470 and A44.

Car Parking

Pay and Display parking available near the trail at these locations:

Car ParkLocationPostcode
Rhayader Central Car ParkRhayaderLD6 5AL
Elan Valley Visitor CentreNear RhayaderLD6 5HP

By Cycle

The trail is a part of National Cycle Network (NCN) Route 81 from Rhayader to Aberystwyth.

By Train

Pen-y-Bont approx. 14 miles from Cwmdeuddwr.


  • Distance (miles): 18
  • Distance (km): 29
  • Start: Cwmdeuddwr
  • Finish: Cwmdeuddwr
  • Type: Disused railway line
  • Surface: Tarmac, gravel
  • Sat Nav: LD6 5AS


  • Car Park
  • Cycle Hire
  • Free Entry
  • Picnic Site
  • Refreshments
  • Toilets
  • Tourist Information

Cycle Hire

Elan Valley Visitor Centre Cycle Hire

Elan Valley

Opening Times

Open all year round except for any temporary closures due to works.


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The information provided on this page is believed to be correct and is given in good faith. Please be aware that it may have changed since our research. Use of the information on this page is at your risk, we cannot accept any liability for any problems or incidents arising. The maps are based on the postcodes of the centres. The postcode provided for Sat Nav is the nearest postcode to the start of the trail or car park and is therefore not 100% accurate to the entrance of the location. Postcodes are provided as a guide only. We recommend that you confirm the location and other details before travelling.

Cycling With The Kids is not responsible for the content of third party websites, and travel times, prices, routes and providers are correct at the time of writing, but may alter at short notice.

Spot something incorrect in the information provided? Let us know!