Visitors to Penllergare Valley Woods can enjoy a warm welcome and unique experience all year round. From its friendly community Coffee Shop to its spectacular scenery Penllergare has something for everyone. This magical and secret valley was left unattended and unloved for more than sixty years until the Penllergare Trust obtained a 100 year lease and set about restoring its unique features for the benefit of the people of Swansea and their visitors.
Today the valley welcomes more than 150,000 visitors per year and attracts tourists from all over the United Kingdom as well as further afield. Outlined below are just some of the features our visitors can experience as well as the best time of the year to view some of our spectacular rhododendrons, azaleas, daffodils and bluebells.
Penllergare’s iconic waterfall is perhaps the most frequently visited area of the woods. This manmade construction was built on the River Llan by John Dillwyn Llewelyn to provide an ornamental lake in line with his development of a picturesque landscape, which was popular at the time.
(Waterfall by Ian Michael)
The valley has two magnificent lakes. The Upper Lake, as the name implies, is situated at the northern end of the valley above the Waterfall. Whilst the Lower Lake can be found towards the middle of the Valley and a pleasant 20 minute stroll from the main car park. Both lakes are havens for wildlife including Kingfishers, Herons and waterfowl as well as visiting migrants such as Little Egret. Otters and Water Vole have also been recorded.
(Autumn Upper Lake by Ian Michael)
The rhododendron and azalea collection at Penllergare was once regarded as one of the foremost collections in the country and many of these can still be found around the Valley, more than 150 years after they were first introduced.
Most recently, new plants have been added to the Woodland Garden area adjacent to the Coffee Shop.
The rhododendrons can be seen at their best in late May and early June.
Bluebells can be found throughout the woods in April, however, it’s at the aptly named Bluebell Wood on the east side of the Valley where they are at the most abundant.
With over 250 acres of woods and parkland and more than 7 miles of pathways Penllergare provides visitors with the opportunity to enjoy a range of activities from a pleasant and peaceful stroll to an energetic hike.
See our Walks & Trails page to download our interactive trail map.
Work is underway on an ambitious new Visitor Centre, new Woodland (Education & Wellbeing) Centre and project to restore the Victorian Walled Garden and surrounding Woodland Garden. Alongside the restored Walled Garden a new Heritage Orchard and Bee Experience is also being developed.
To find out more about the exciting future plans that are Coming Soon.