top of page

Sgwd Ddwli Uchaf

Visiting Sgwd Ddwli Uchaf? Nestled in the Brecon Beacons South Wales, this striking fall is a must-see in Waterfall Country. Here’s your quick guide to the practicalities: best visiting times, accessibility, and highlights without giving away too much —leaving you the thrill of discovery. Get set for an unforgettable outdoors encounter with one of Wales’ natural marvels.


Discover Outstanding Natural Beauty

Sgwd Ddwli Uchaf is a striking waterfall located in the Brecon Beacons National Park in South Wales, offering a uniquely captivating experience in the natural world for visitors of all hiking levels.

  • The River Nedd Fechan, also known as the Little Neath river, plays a significant role in shaping the landscape and biodiversity of the area, and maintains the region’s historical legacy through its journey.

  • Conservation efforts are vital to preserve Sgwd Ddwli Uchaf’s natural beauty, with guidelines established for visitors to protect the integrity of the park’s delicate ecosystems.

Exploring Sgwd Ddwli Uchaf: The Upper Gushing Falls

Sgwd Ddwli Uchaf, a dramatic waterfall on the River Nedd Fechan, further embellishes the stunning landscapes of South Wales. The river courses over Old Red Sandstone and vanishes underground upon reaching a band of Carboniferous Limestone, contributing to the formation of Sgwd Ddwli Uchaf. The river reemerges to tumble over further cascades, with Sgwd Ddwli Uchaf being the higher of such formations. The impressive drop, framed by serene landscapes, makes it one of the most captivating waterfalls in the Brecon Beacons National Park, South Wales.

Beautiful Journey

The beauty of Sgwd Ddwli Uchaf is not just in its powerful drop but also in the journey it inspires. As you navigate the trails, the sights and sounds of the waterfall beckon, inviting you to immerse yourself in the nature. So, whether you are a seasoned adventurer or a casual visitor looking for a tranquil escape, Sgwd Ddwli Uchaf promises a memorable experience.

The River Nedd Fechan, originating in the rugged uplands of Wales, nestled between Fan Gyhirych and Fan Fraith, begins its journey at approximately 650 metres above sea level. As it carves through the lush Welsh landscape, the River Nedd Fechan contributes to the region’s diversity and beauty, eventually meeting with Afon Pyrddin to form the Afon Nedd, also known as the River Neath.

Location and Access to Sgwd Ddwli Uchaf

Sgwd Ddwli Uchaf, located on the River Nedd Fechan, is readily accessible to visitors. Yet, like any popular tourist destination, careful trip planning is highly recommended. The car parks in Waterfall Country can become crowded quickly, so it’s advisable to check their status before your visit.


Best Times to Visit Sgwd Ddwli Uchaf

When should you visit Sgwd Ddwli Uchaf? The beauty of this waterfall can be admired at any time of the year, but spring and autumn are particularly recommended. The vibrant colours of the foliage in these seasons enhance the allure of the waterfall, making it an ideal time for photography enthusiasts. The waterfall is most impressive after a period of heavy rain. However, this can make the paths muddy and challenging, so proper footwear and safety precautions are advised.

Guided Walks and Other Activities

Beezra Activities Guided walks are a great way to safely explore the area. Join us for a variety of exciting water activities, all detailed on and easy to book from our website. If you fancy a climb, or exploring caves, we can provide these activities. We can also arrange your accommodation. Irrespective of whether you’re planning a guided walk or a self-guided tour, keeping an eye on the weather forecast and preparing in line with it is a must.

What to Bring on Your Waterfall Adventure

Prepare for your adventure to Sgwd Ddwli Uchaf. Given the rapidly changing weather, make sure to pack:

  •       Waterproof clothing

  •       Walking boots

  •       A warm hat

  •       Gloves

  • Food and Water

It’s also essential to carry emergency contact details and know how to reach emergency services via mobile phone in case of an incident.

Photography Tips

For those wishing to capture the beauty of the waterfall, proper photography equipment is a must. Neutral density filters can manage the amount of light hitting the camera’s sensor, allowing for longer exposures without overexposure. Circular polariser filters can reduce reflections on water, enhance colour saturation, and create a darker image, aiding in long exposure photography. So, whether you’re a seasoned photographer or a beginner, remember these tips to capture stunning images of Sgwd Ddwli Uchaf.

Flora and Fauna Around the River Nedd Fechan

The River Nedd Fechan is a lifeline for the flora and fauna in the area. Enclosed by the Celtic Rainforest and Atlantic woodland, the river is surrounded by rich biodiversity. These vibrant ecosystems host a multitude of plant species, making the area a haven for nature enthusiasts.

The preservation of this flora is critical for the continued health of the Celtic Rainforest and Atlantic woodland ecosystems. Each species is playing a unique role in maintaining the balance of these ecosystems.

Historical Significance of River Nedd Fechan

The River Nedd Fechan is not just a natural wonder, but it also holds a rich Welsh history significance. Flowing from Fforest Fawr to the Vale of Neath, it has served as a boundary marker between Brecknockshire and Glamorgan, as well as the ancient Welsh kingdoms of Brycheiniog and Glywysing.

The river also carries traces of the industrial era, with remnants of tramways used for silica mine access still visible along its banks. The River Neath played a central role in the history of Neath Abbey. The monks used it to compete with the town of Neath for trading privileges.

Hiking the Trails: Brecon Beacons National Park

The Brecon Beacons National Park, home to Sgwd Ddwli Uchaf, is a paradise for hikers. Offering an array of trails that vary in difficulty, the park caters to a diverse range of hikers, matching trails to their fitness and experience levels. Whether you are a seasoned hiker seeking a challenging trail or a novice looking for a leisurely walk, the park has something to offer everyone.

Other Waterfall Trails

Guided walks are available from Beezra Activities, with grading provided to help hikers choose the most suitable trail for their level of ability. And for those seeking more waterfall experiences, the area surrounding Sgwd Ddwli Uchaf offers a chance to explore additional waterfalls like:

  • Sgwd Clun-Gwyn

  • Sgwd Isaf Clun-Gwyn

  • Sgwd y Pannwr

  • Sgwd yr Eira

Each offering a unique and memorable hiking experience, such as the opportunity to walk behind a waterfall or enjoy picturesque charm. While Sgwd Ddwli Uchaf is undoubtedly a highlight, it’s worth exploring other waterfalls in the area for a complete Waterfall Country experience. Sgwd Gwladys’ has a notable 7-metre drop, and Sgwd Isaf Clun-Gwyn has a special charm as the smallest of the group. To access Sgwd y Pannwr, you’ll need to navigate a muddy trail over the river from Sgwd Isaf Clun-Gwyn, part of the adventurous Four Waterfalls Walk.

Choosing the Right Trail

Choosing the right trail for your abilities and interests can significantly enhance your hiking experience. If you’re a beginner, it’s advisable to start with Moderate Walks in the Brecon Beacons to gauge your fitness levels against the park’s trail grading system. If you’re planning to hike with your dogs, make sure to choose pet-friendly trails.

For those new to the park, the Elidir Trail is a favourable choice. Offering an easy pathway, this trail provides an opportunity to experience four magnificent waterfalls, making it a great starting point for your exploration of the park.

Creating a Waterfall Itinerary

Crafting a waterfall itinerary calls for proper planning. Here are some tips to help you prepare for your waterfall tour:

1.     Start your tour early in the Brecon Beacons to avoid crowded car parks and to ensure a full day’s experience.

2.     Pack essentials such as water, snacks, and sturdy hiking shoes for a comfortable and safe waterfall tour.

3.     Remember to carry cash for parking fees, as many car parks in the area do not accept other forms of payment.

Be prepared for the journey on narrow, single-track roads leading to the waterfalls and the subsequent walk from the car parks, which may be on uneven terrain.

Preserving Natural Beauty: Conservation Efforts

There is a pressing need to preserve the natural beauty of Sgwd Ddwli Uchaf and its surroundings. Local government and environmental organisations have established codes and guidance to ensure visitors can enjoy the natural surroundings responsibly. Visitors are encouraged to adhere to the Countryside Code and the Dog Walking Code, which emphasize staying on marked paths, respecting wildlife, and maintaining cleanliness by disposing of litter and waste properly.

The Brecon Beacons National Park Authority, supported by the Welsh Government, has identified and protected several areas as Conservation Areas to preserve their distinctive natural and cultural features. Strict regulations ensure any new developments or alterations of buildings in these areas are assessed for their impact on the area’s character, safeguarding the environmental integrity of these special locales. As visitors, respecting these regulations and guidelines is a small but significant contribution to preserving the natural beauty of Sgwd Ddwli Uchaf and its surroundings.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best time to visit Sgwd Ddwli Uchaf?

The best time to visit Sgwd Ddwli Uchaf is in spring or autumn, with autumn being ideal for photography due to vibrant autumnal colours and fallen leaves.

What should I bring on my waterfall adventure?

For your waterfall adventure, bring waterproof clothing, walking boots, a warm hat, gloves, a rucksack with food and water, and a camera with necessary filters to handle changing weather and capture the experience.

Are there any other waterfalls in the area?

Yes, there are several other waterfalls in the vicinity of Sgwd Ddwli Uchaf, such as Sgwd Clun-Gwyn, Sgwd Isaf Clun-Gwyn, Sgwd y Pannwr, and Sgwd yr Eira.

What is the significance of the River Nedd Fechan?

The River Nedd Fechan holds historical significance as a boundary marker between Brecknockshire and Glamorgan, and was important during the industrial era.

What Else Can I Visit Whilst In Wales?

Cardiff Bay, Newport town, and Swansea Bay are locations within easy drive of the Brecon Beacons. Swansea has beautiful seaside beaches, Cardiff has castles in the centre and in surrounding areas, including Caerphilly, whilst each city offers friends and family culture in the form of museums, arts, festivals, music and great food and drink outlets. For more stunning beaches head west to many Pembrokeshire destinations to walk part of the Wales Coast Path and take in the bracing sea air and windswept shores in summer or winter. For more heritage, visit St Davids, the UK's smallest city while you are in the area.

Other waterfalls on the four waterfalls walk are

Elidir Trail 

bottom of page