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Climbing Pen Y Fan

September 1, 2020

The weather on the August Bank Holiday was really nice in Cardiff, and given that I had just returned from enjoying the sandy beaches in my home town (Corfu), I wanted to head on a mini adventure to the mountains. With no hesitation, I packed my bag and drove (approx. 1h) to Pen Y Fan, which is part of the Brecon Beacons National Park. At 886 meters, Pen Y Fan is the highest mountain in South Wales ⛰️!

Note: The weather in Pen Y Fan may be different from where you are, so check the weather using the live webcam here.


The most popular parking spots are located just off the A470 near the Storey Arms outdoor education centre. They are both free and you can either park opposite the centre itself or slightly to the south at a car park called Pont ar Daf. Paths to the peaks start from both car parks. The main path starts from the Pont ar Daf car park.

The route

The walk to the main summit is of medium difficulty and it took me almost 1h and 30 minutes to reach it, including the occasional stops for photos and water. My Apple Watch recorded the following details from the whole walk:

Climb Details from apple watch
Climb Details from apple watch

From the car park, the main path to the summit mainly consists of hard dirt, however there are rockier parts that make it more challenging. I definitely recommend wearing hiking shoes or any other shoes that offer ankle support to avoid injuries. My partner did twist their ankle a few times, specifically on the way down..

Path to the summit

I would also recommend taking water and food with you. After the walk, you will definitely feel hungry! At the top of the summit, there is a relatively large and flat area where you can picnic whilst enjoying breath taking views.

Side Note: It may be significantly colder at the top of the summit, so make sure to take a jacket with you.


As you can imagine, Pen Y Fan is an amazing place for mountain photography. So don’t forget to take your camera. Below are a few of my favourite shots that I took:

At the top of the summit
Side view
On the way to the summit
Somewhere in the middle of the walk
A few meters from the car park
En route to the summit
Fields on the way up
Side views
The path
An other path connecting a different peak (saddle)

The end

I hope that you found this post useful. If you have the opportunity to go up Pen Y Fan you should for sure consider it! It is a nice walk and escape from the city of Cardiff and will allow you to enjoy and appreciate the beauty of the Welsh nature. If you are also a photographer, it will be impossible to not love this place!

Until next time..


P.S. Check out my previous post here.

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