Caffi Meinir, Nant Gwrtheyrn

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Caffi Meinir, Nant Gwrtheyrn

This café and restaurant, which sits beside the Wales Coast path, is named after the tragic heroine of a local folk tale. Meinir and Rhys had grown up in the Nant Gwrtheyrn valley and fallen in love. On the morning of their wedding, to be held at Clynnog Fawr, Meinir followed local custom and hid, then Rhys’ friends went to find her and to take her to church. Meinir could not be found. The wedding was cancelled and Rhys fell into depression. Months later he was sheltering from a storm under an old hollow oak tree, when lightning broke open the trunk. Inside was Meinir’s decomposed body, still in her wedding dress.

Near Caffi Meinir is a sculpture relating to the tale of Rhys and Meinir. It was created by Sebastien Boyesen in 2010. Sebastien Boyesen’s other work in Wales includes the Merchant Navy War Memorial in Newport.

The name Nant Gwrtheyrn is also the stuff of legend. Gwrtheyrn, or Vortigern, was a British king in what is now south-east England in the fifth century. He hired Saxon mercenaries to help fend off his rivals and asked to marry the daughter of the Saxon leader Hengist. At a celebratory banquet the Saxons killed Gwrtheyrn’s men, and he fled to the obscurity of this valley beyond Snowdonia.

“Nant” = stream or valley.

To hear how to pronounce Nant Gwrtheyrn, press play: Or, download mp3 (27KB)

Where is this HiPoint?

Postcode: LL53 6NL

Nant Gwrtheyrn website

Other LEGEND HiPoints in this region:
Dinas Dinlle
– said to be childhood home of the Mabinogion’s Lleu Llaw Gyffes

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