RSPB Ynys-hir, UNESCO Dyfi Biosphere, Mid Wales

RSPB Ynys-hir is a wildlife haven in the heart of Wales, awarded Ramsar, Natura 2000 and SSSI status. It is located in the UNESCO Dyfi Biosphere – the only internationally recognised UNESCO Biosphere in Wales.

With the mountains of southern Snowdonia to the north and the Cambrian hills to the south, Ynys-hir is stunning whichever way you look. Summer brings wading birds, such as lapwings and redshanks and some very special butterflies. 

In the Autumn and Winter watch huge flocks of waders such as lapwing, golden plover, curlew and redshank. Be in awe of the magical flight of red kites, harriers and peregrine. RSPB Ynys-hir is the only wintering site for Greenland white fronted geese.

The reserve covers an area of 800 hectares with a wide mix of habitats - mountain, lowland wet grassland, reedbed, bog, woodland and saltmarsh. A team of wardens and volunteers manage these habitats and have helped restore a conifer plantation into an active peat bog habitat.

10 minutes walk away is Ynyshir Restaurant and Rooms, one of Wales’ most unique and contemporary fine dining destinations with five AA rosettes as well as a Michelin Star.

Ynys-hir was once owned by Queen Victoria - who loved the abundance of birds on the estuary part of the estate. She had the hall refurbished and many of the trees she had planted are still in evidence today. In 1928, Ynys-hir was bought by William Hubert Mappin – of the jewellers Mappin and Webb. Mappin arranged that on his death in 1966, 1,000 acres of the estate be sold to the RSPB, to establish the bird reserve which everyone can enjoy today.

Proximity to Coastal Way: Access directly from Coastal Way on the A470, 6.4 miles south of Machynlleth. The reserve is situated between Machynlleth and Aberystwyth. Turn off the A487 in the village of Eglwys-fach and proceed one mile to the car park.Postcode SY20 8TA.

The nearest train station is Machynlleth. Proceed by bus or taxi to the reserve from there. If you are coming by bike, it is possible to get a train to Dyfi junction and cycle the 3 miles to the reserve. Sustrans Route 8 in nearby.

There is a regular hourly bus service between Machynlleth and Aberystwyth which stops in Eglwys-fach (X28).

>> Click here for more information about RSPB Ynys-hir

Independent Businesses
Top 5 things to do in Ynys-hir

Top 5 Things to Do in RSPB Ynys-hir

• Stop for a picnic - RSPB Ynys-hir is the perfect place with stunning views from the picnic tables.

• In the Autumn and Winter watch huge flocks of waders such as lapwing, golden plover, curlew and redshank.

• Enjoy walks through the woods and out to the saltmarsh, great way to unwind and get close to nature.

• Families can enjoy exploring with our wildlife kits on hire to get close to bugs and beetles, or spend time building dens.

• The Visitor Centre offers a warm welcome, sit and watch the birds on our mega feeders whilst enjoying homemade cake with fresh brewed “Bird Friendly” coffee.

Getting To Lake Vyrnwy


Places to Explore in the UNESCO Dyfi Biosphere

Places to Stay in and around RSPB Ynys-hir

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