A POWYS walking festival has been named among the best to experience in 2022, and organisers are recommending their favourite walk to share their love of the region and help shake off the winter blues – not to mention the extra pounds piled on over Christmas!

The Talgarth Walking Festival takes place from April 29 to May 2 next year and has been included in Outdooractive’s list of ‘best walking festivals for 2022’. To mark the occasion, festival organisers are recommending their favourite winter walk to share their love of the region in all seasons.

Organiser Havard Prosser said: “The walking festival in Talgarth has provided an opportunity for local people to discover the natural beauty on their doorstep and has also drawn in visitors to this quieter part of the Brecon Beacons National Park.

“Local accommodation providers have benefited greatly from visitors to the festival and we are hoping that the public health situation will be much improved for next spring’s event.”

Craig Wareham, of Europe’s leading outdoor adventure platform Outdooractive, says Talgarth is excellent example of how festivals can introduce new people to walking and stimulate economic activity. “The British have a fine tradition of walking festivals and we are looking to profile the best to our international community,” he said.

“The Talgarth team have impressed us with their enthusiasm and passion and the 2022 festival brings together both heritage and landscape.”

Talgarth Walking Festival is organised by Gateway to the Black Mountains, made up of local businesses, charitable organisations, accommodation providers and passionate walkers and local residents who want to position their town as an ideal base for exploring the stunning beauty of the Brecon Beacons and the Wye Valley.

The festival creates an opportunity to explore the area guided by knowledgeable leaders. “One of the great advantages of the festival is that local leaders share their enthusiasm for places and themes,” added Havard.

“The walks take you on journeys through wooded dingles up on to the Black Mountains plateau.”

Sadly, the festival was cancelled last year due to the pandemic. It was out of concern that many communities and festivals like Talgarth would be impacted by Covid-19 that prompted Outdooractive to support many create a virtual presence in 2021. Its team helped digitise paper-based walking routes to create self-guided walks that could be followed year around using its free navigation app.

Details of the virtual festivals with taster walks chosen by the organisers were then shared with Outdooractive’s growing community of enthusiasts. This has encouraged people to visit the region, discover walks recommended by local people and look forward to future in-person events, with Talgarth one of the festivals to benefit. “We created our first virtual festival last year with some of the routes made available on the Outdooractive app,” said Havard.

“We will be uploading more routes again this year to help introduce a wider audience to the Black Mountains area and to enable the walks to be enjoyed for more of the year.”

One of the virtual routes available is Talgarth to Pwll-y-Wrach waterfall, a six-mile adventure up often-snow-dusted hills, which is recommended by Talgarth Walking Festival as the perfect winter walk.

A map for Havard’s recommended winter walk is available to follow by downloading the free Outdooractive app and searching for Talgarth Walking Festival in the search bar.