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The falls from the viewing platform
Conwy Falls after heavy rain

Conwy Falls (Welsh: Rhaeadr y Graig Lwyd) is a waterfall on the River Conwy at Bro Garmon in Conwy County Borough in Wales. The falls and surrounding area are a Site of Special Scientific Interest.[1] The nearby cafe, adjacent to the A5, is an interesting example of the work of the Welsh architect Clough Williams-Ellis, of Portmeirion fame.[2]

The falls, woodland and wildlife[edit]

The falls are located in the last gorge section of the river Conwy at a point where it plunges 50 feet (15 m) into a deep pool.[3] The falls are accessible via natural paths through the preserved woodland of the SSSI. Polecats and other wild animals, including 32 species of bird, inhabit the surrounding woodlands, which extend to approximately 9.5 acres (38,000 m2).[4]

Salmon ladder[edit]

The River Conwy is a salmon river, and there are two salmon ladders at the falls. One is a disused Victorian wooden ladder that was destroyed by a storm soon after being built, and incorporating steps hewn into the rock. The second is a modern ladder, built in 1993 at a cost of nearly £1m, which can detect and count every fish that enters.[5] This ladder—not visible to the public—consists of some 30 pools set in a zig-zag pattern within a piped tunnel.[6]

There is a water gauging station at the Falls, measuring the flow into the fish pass. When low levels are detected, the flow is diverted over the falls, rather than through the pass, to ensure that flora in the gorge is protected.[7]

The cafe building[edit]

The first cafe at the falls was simply a wooden hut.[8] In 1938 the Welsh architect Clough Williams-Ellis was consulted with regard to the design of a new building, the original design being for a building perched on the rocks above the falls, but this was never built. The current building dates from the 1950s and, although rather different from Williams-Ellis' design (drawings of which are displayed in the cafe's main room[8]), is nevertheless an excellent example of his style, the cafe being "provided with a pediment in the Georgian style and an open loggia on the upper level."[9]


  1. ^ Sayer, Zoe; Rebecca Terry (2006). All Terrain Pushchair Walks in Snowdonia. Sigma Press, p. 59.
  2. ^ Clough Williams-Ellis, by Richard Haslam & Clough Williams-Ellis, published by Academy Editions, 1996
  3. ^ RoughGuides.com - Conwy Falls
  4. ^ BritainExpress.com - Conwy Falls
  5. ^ Conwy Falls - the salmon ladder
  6. ^ New Scientist - Technology: The fish ladder with a twist
  7. ^ Environment Agency - Conwy Catchment Abstraction Management Strategy, April 2004
  8. ^ a b Conwy Falls cafe - History
  9. ^ Clough Williams-Ellis: The architect of Portmeirion : A memoir, by Jonah Jones, published by Seren, 1996
  • Conwy Falls fish pass tunnel, R.Byles, from International Journal of Rock Mechanics and Mining Sciences and Geomechanics Abstracts, Volume 32, Number 4, June 1995, pp. 189A–189A

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 53°03′55″N 3°46′45″W / 53.0652°N 3.7791°W / 53.0652; -3.7791

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conwy_Falls — Please support Wikipedia.
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6666 videos foundNext > 

North Wales Conwy falls Kayaking

Conwy Falls.

Conwy Falls

Some retro footage from the MUCC archives.

Chloe Leavers Live @ Conwy Falls Cafe

Chloe Leavers Live at the Conwy Falls Cafe, nr Betws-y-Coed, 5th March 2011. Great Coffee and Beautiful Music. What more could you ask for? A proper chilled evening.

river conwy A5 road bridge to conwy falls

kayaking the conwy.

Chloe Leavers Live @ Conwy Falls Cafe - the last song.

Last song of the set at Conwy Falls Cafe, 5th March 2011.

Conwy Falls Waterfall on the river Conwy

The Conwy Falls on the river Conwy just through the forrest from the Conwy Falls Cafe near Betws Y Coed.

Conwy Falls, Waterfall, Snowdonia, North Wales

after very heavy rain. now is a good time to come and look at our spectacular waterfall in Snowdonia just outside Betws Y Coed. be sure to pop into our cafe when you visit.

Conwy Falls with Extreme Velocity

not exactly what we were looking for, mixed this place up with another site we were supposed to visit. Not to worry though, it was nice!

Conwy Falls

Sweep of both segments of the falls before briefly looking downstream then ending off with another look back at the falls' entirety.

Conwy falls Wales 2012

Here is our visit to the welsh waterfalls in Wales ..I apologise for Jonathan messing about during filming Hope you like it.

6666 videos foundNext > 

40 news items


Mon, 21 Oct 2013 04:09:51 -0700

The pair, described as experienced paddlers, were on the River Conwy yesterday when they overshot a safe exit point and ended up in a steep gorge at the Conwy Falls. The men, one in his late 20s the other in his early 30s and from mid- and south Wales, ...

The Guardian

The Guardian
Sun, 15 Mar 2015 00:00:25 -0700

“The free fall is very scary. I did it five times in a row to try to get used to it, but it was still just as frightening the fifth time as the first.” The words of Pete, a caving instructor and former soldier who fought in Afghanistan, are ringing in ...

ITV News

ITV News
Thu, 12 Feb 2015 23:30:00 -0800

Situated at the Conwy Falls, the new adventure consists of 9 zip lines in total - the highest number of zip lines on any adventure in the world. It's also the deepest zip line in the world with the solid rock above being 1,230 ft thick. If whizzing ...


Wed, 09 Jul 2014 06:06:53 -0700

For retro cool (and less expensive food), head to the 1930s art deco café at Conwy Falls near Betws-y-Coed, where you can enjoy local Conwy Valley ales and cider and stone-baked pizzas next to the soothing sound of the nearby waterfalls. And it is time ...

Daily Post North Wales

Daily Post North Wales
Fri, 11 Apr 2014 09:07:58 -0700

Conwy Falls Cafe, Betws-y-Coed: Simon Collinge said, "Coffee and Tea sourced locally, great atmosphere including photographic exhibitions." More than a hundred people nominated 37 different outlets across the length and breadth of North Wales, telling ...
BBC News
Wed, 09 Feb 2011 06:16:22 -0800

But despite the risks, he said it was rare for rescuers to be seriously injured, and he and his colleagues could not have simply stood by. Ogwen Valley Mountain Rescue and other emergency services were involved in the drama at Conwy falls, which ended ...


Tue, 26 Nov 2013 09:45:44 -0800

RWE propose to build a weir with a two metre high face on the Conwy river, just above Rhydlanfair Bridge, in order to extract water that will be carried in a buried pipeline around the Conwy Falls and the Fairy Glen, to a turbine house at the foot of ...

BBC News

BBC News
Sat, 12 Oct 2013 04:30:59 -0700

The drive-in, run by the council's Goleuo project, follows a similar smaller project in 2011 at Conwy Falls. The EU funded scheme has been running for three years and will come to an end next month, making Saturday's event one of Goleuo's last big ...

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