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  3. Pontcysyllte Aqueduct
Places to visit

Pontcysyllte Aqueduct

History of the Aqueduct

Built between 1795 and 1805, the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct was the brainchild of Thomas Telford and William Jessop. The original plan was to build a series of locks down one side of the valley and up again on the other side, but Telford envisioned an Aqueduct that would span the valley. Despite some public pushback, the Aqueduct was built within 10 years and was opened to traffic on the 26th of November, 1805. Trevor Basin on the Northern end of the Aqueduct, is the only remnant of the original plan to extend the canal via Wrexham to Chester.

Why you should visit

For everyone with a head for heights, the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct on the Llangollen Canal is the perfect canal experience. There is no railing on the canalside - at times it feels like floating through the air. The views are truly spectacular.

‘Pontcysyllte’ pronounced Pont – ker – sulth – tay, is the Welsh name for ‘the bridge that connects’

Boat on Pontcysyllte Aqueduct

Good to know

  • As there is no railing on the canal side, care should be taken while crossing the Aqueduct. Pets and children should stay inside during the crossing.
  • There are turning points and visitor moorings on both sides of the Aqueduct.
  • Due to its narrow nature, there is no space for 2 boats to pass each other on the Aqueduct. Everyone who wants to cross should make sure that the Aqueduct is clear before entering it.
  • No crossing should be attempted in high winds and during thunderstorms.

Things to do away from the towpath

  • There are several footpaths that lead down to the bottom of the Aqueduct. Just follow the fingerposts and steps that lead down on the Northern End of the Aqueduct.
  • Ty Mawr Countrypark is an excellent choice for a nice morning or afternoon stroll. The kids will appreciate the playground and ice cream shop at the visitor centre and the turning point of this walk.

Photos of the aqueduct

View from the towpath on the aqueduct View from the side of Pontcysyllte Aqueduct Looking up at the Aqueduct from the river Hire Boat Crossing the Aqueduct Aerial view of canal boats crossing the Aqueduct The Llangollen Canal winds towards the World Hertitage Site, Pontcysyllte Aqueduct

Our hire bases that serve the aqueduct

We currently have 2 canal boat hire bases from which you can visit the aqueduct on an active 1 week or more relaxed 2-week holiday.