Explore a Neolithic axe ‘factory’ and Bronze Age burial ground
The summit of Mynydd Rhiw at the western extremity of the Llŷn Peninsula was an important source of fused shale in the Neolithic period. The remains of a series of backfilled pits may be seen today, the remnants of a single opencast trench thought to have been 90 metres in length. Here quarried stone was used to manufacture axes and the site has been referred to as a Neolithic axe ‘factory’, or centre of production. An axe from this site was discovered during a recent excavation at Llwydiarth Esgob on Anglesey.
Two hundred metres south of the main quarry site lie four Bronze Age burial cairns arranged along a prominent ridge. A fifth cairn once existed on the summit of Mynydd Rhiw, but is sadly no longer visible today. During excavations in the 1950s a Bronze Age urn, used to hold cremated ashes, was discovered in the nearby hamlet of Y Rhiw. The cairns themselves have never been excavated.
Both sites have been designated Scheduled Ancient Monuments.
- Accessible by Public Transport
- Good Walks Nearby
- Family Walk
Follow signs for Rhiw off B4413 Aberdaron road
Pwllheli - approx 11 miles
Bus stop at Rhiw Crossroads
Cycle routes from Sarn Meyllteyrn
Footpath from National Trust car park. ¼ mile to site of Neolithic Axe Factory on north side of Mynydd Rhiw before summit.
Moderate mountain footpath. Walking boots recommended.
Full Figure Grid Reference: SH 234299
OS Landranger map sheet: OS 123
- Mynydd Rhiw Neolithic Axe Stone Source and Bronze Age Burial Cairns, Rhiw