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Merionethshire

Merioneth or Merionethshire (Meirionnydd) is a triangular county with a coast along Cardigan Bay and slicing deep into the Welsh mountains between Caernarfonshire and Denbighshire to the north and Montgomeryshire to the south. The mountains in the north of Merionethshire merge into those of Snowdonia and form part of the National Park; this is a land of rough mountainous terrain. The county’s two rival county towns lie either side of the Snowdonia massif; Bala in the east at the head of Lake Bala, and Harlech on the coast in the west.

The Merionethshire coast runs from the great inlet of Traeth Bach, south to the estuary of the River Dovey. Between the two is a third deep-cut sea-loch, the Mawddach opening into Barmouth Bay

Hanging over the coast is the tiny town of Harlech, dominated by the remains of the Castle (and leaving the main street squeezed tight against mountain). Little more than a shell now, Harlech Castle served its turn from King Edward I to King Charles I, and it inspired the famous song.

County Facts

County Town:  Dolgellau

Main Towns: Aberdovey, Bala, Barmouth, Blaenau Ffestiniog, Harlech, Trawsfynydd.

Main Rivers: Dee, Mawr, Dovey.

Highlights: Calder Idris; Centre for Alternative Technology; Lake Bala; Harlech Castle; Ffestiniog Railway; Portmeirion; Snowdonia National Park.

Highest Point: Aran Fawddwy, 2,972 feet.

Area: 780 sq miles

County Flower: Welsh Poppy