Perhaps the hardest part about this day out is finding the car park; pass the small community of Llanddeusant and you know you're close.


Parking up in the small, gravel car park, you'll already be aware of the solitude of this part of the Brecon Beacons – it's the quiet understudy to the neighbouring central peaks of Pen y Fan, Corn Du and Cribyn, yet certainly no less spectacular.

This moderate-level, four-mile walk in the west of the Brecon Beacons National Park includes a bustling river, a lonely llyn and a wild mountain ridge.

Lake in Wales
Llyn y Fan Fach seen from the western ridge/Credit: Getty

Llyn y Fan Fach walk

3.8 miles | 390m accent | 2.5 hours | moderate

1. River to llyn

From the car park, head east along the lower Beacons Way, veering south as you meet Afon Sawdde. Follow the torrent upstream, passing grazing sheep to meet the source of the river at Llyn y Fan Fach.

Brecon Beacons National Park

2. Life by the lake

Llyn y Fan Fach sits beneath the precipitous ridgeline of Bannau Sir Gaer. It's an epic scene, the remnants of the landscape’s glacial past clearly visible in all directions.

The lake is a real wildlife haven. Look out for fish as they flip on the water's surface, while up in the sky, riding the thermals, you're likely to see red kites, buzzards, carrion crows and kestrels.

Walk west and follow a path steeply uphill to the Bannau Sir Gaer ridgeline.

Bird of prey hovering
Kestrels are one of many bird species that live in the Brecon Beacons/Credit: Getty

3. Black Mountain view

If you're feeling adventurous, you can walk east along the entire ridge, all the way to Fan Hir. Otherwise, descend north on the Beacons Way, stopping from time to time to absorb the view.

4. Lower ground

The way drops into farmland to meet a small road. Turn right and return to the car park.


Llyn y Fan Fach map

Llyn y Fan Fach walking route and map

Llyn y Fan Fach walking route and map


Daniel Graham of COuntryfile magazine on a hike with wet hair and blue coat and hills in background
Daniel GrahamOutdoors editor, BBC Countryfile Magazine

Danny is the outdoors editor of BBC Countryfile Magazine, responsible for commissioning, editing and writing articles that offer ideas and inspiration for exploring the UK countryside.