OverviewCarnedd Llewelyn is a mountain in the Carneddau (Cairns in Welsh) range in Snowdonia, northern Wales. It is the highest point in Wales outside the Snowdon range and the second highest peak by relative height (Garnedd Ugain, a side-peak of Snowdon is just a little bit higher - 1065 m.)
The name is in Welsh and translates as Llewelyn's cairn. It is thought to be named after one of the Welsh princes named Llewelyn in the thirteenth century, but it is not known whether this is Llywelyn the Great or his grandson Llywelyn ap Gruffydd.
Carnedd Llewelyn is located in the middle of the Carneddau range, connected with the ridges to Carnedd Dafydd (1044 m., second highest in the Carneddau) in the southwest, Yr Elen (962 m.) in the northwest, Foel Grach (976 m.) in the north and Pen Yr Helgi Du (833 m.) in the southeast. Being surrounded by other peaks from all directions means the approach to the summit is always a relatively long walk. At the same time, however, after making it to one of the peaks of the Carneddau range, you will stay more or less on the high plateau. It's the largest area of uninhabited highland in England and Wales and you can do a long walk and visit all the peaks of the Carneddau without descending and re-ascending too much.
The Carneddau range offers many hiking routes with all providing excellent views over North Wales. Of course, this applies only to the clear days, which are quite rare in Wales. On a clear day, all the trails are very obvious and easy to follow, but this situation may change drastically in the fog. Besides hiking trails, there are also some rock climbing routes available (Ysgolion Duon, for instance).
The summit of Carnedd Llewelyn itself is a big dome-shaped plateau, so you have to walk around to get the best views.
Getting ThereAssuming you are arriving from east with a car, you will just have to follow the A5 to Betws-y-Coed. To start from the south, continue on A5, through Capel Curig until you reach Llyn Ogwen / Gwern Gof Uchaf (Ogwen valley). To start from west, continue on A5 until you reach Bethesda. For starting from the east, turn right onto A470 from Betws-y-coed, and then to B5106 from Llanrwst. Continue on A470 until you reach Tal-y-Bont.
There is a bus - Snowdon Sherpa S6 - that drives between Bethesda and Betws-y-Coed and so servicing the Ogwen valley. See the website for timetables: Snowdon Sherpa
Red TapeWelsh mountains have no red tape, but most of the lower land is private, so it is advisable to stay on marked trails then. The parking is free if you park alongside A5 near Lake Ogwen. However, since this area receives many visitors during the peak period, it would be wise to arrive early then. There's also a chance to park at Gwern Gof Uchaf farm (in the Ogwen valley), where there's a small charge (about £1)
CampingThere is a big camping site near the A5 at the Gwern Gof Uchaf farm. Also, there's a magnificent place for camping as you reach the Ffynnon Lloer reservoir near where the route up to Pen Yr Ole Wen starts.
External LinksOrdnance Survey map with the surroundings
Wikipedia Carneddau Page
(lists all the other peaks in the area)
(see the Carneddau section for the detailed information about all the walks in the region)