Learn Welsh by the sea, in the shadow of Yr Eifl
Nant Gwrtheyrn, on the northern coastline of the Llŷn Peninsula, is the site of a secluded, former granite-quarrying village. Known as ‘The Nant’ and now home to a thriving residential Welsh language centre, the valley is enclosed by the sea near the Eifl Mountains.
The quarrying company built houses in the late 1870s for employees and their families.
Fourteen houses were set in terraces around a square (known as Cae Bach) and were served by the company store. The manager’s house and offices were also situated here, which must have made for a close-knit village life in an isolated location. You should be able to spot the remains of the working quarries all around this landscape – from concrete crushing mills to the remains of the jetties for transporting the stone by sea.
The community was abandoned when the quarry closed, and during the 1970s it was taken over by the New Atlantis Commune of hippies. The village first became accessible by vehicles in 1983, when the language centre was established and the buildings restored to their former glory. The heritage centre tells the story of village life and features an early 20th century quarryman’s house. Pick up information about the local wildlife and head down to the beach to see what you can discover.
This magical setting has inspired more than one ancient association, including a link with Vortigern, a 5th-century British ruler; he is also known as Gwrtheyrn (which is the same name in English). The best-known legend is that of two childhood sweethearts, Rhys and Meinir, whose wedding day ended in tragedy.
Itinerary Living on the Granite
application/pdf / 0.6 MB
Download Audio Tour
Living on Granite - Track 1 - Llithfaen Quarrymen's Memorial
audio/mpeg / 1.86 MB
Living on Granite - Track 2 - Cae'r Mynydd and the 'Y Wal Fawr'
audio/mpeg / 3.82 MB
Living on Granite - Track 3 - Tre'r Ceiri
audio/mpeg / 2.38 MB
Living on Granite - Track 4 - Nant Gwrtheyrn
audio/mpeg / 4.92 MB
- Accessible by Public Transport
- Info Point
- Buggy Access
- Good Walks Nearby
- Children's Facilities
- Family Walk
- Picnic Area
- Wheelchair Access
Follow sign from B4417 in Llithfaen
Pwllheli - 7 miles, Bangor - 25 miles
Bus stop B4417 at Post Office, Llithfaen
From car park at top - 30 minutes down and 50 minutes back up
Steep road into village. Parking at village.
Full Grid Reference Number: SH350448
OS Landranger map sheet: 123
- 01758 750 335
- Nant Gwrtheyrn, LL53 6NL