The First Geopark to be Established in Wales

In 2005, an area of the Brecon Beacons in south Wales became the first designated geopark in the whole of Wales, the site is to be called the Fforest Fawr Geopark.  A geopark is an area of land regarded as having significant geological importance within Europe.

The Fforest Fawr Geopark (the name translates as great forest), is part of the Brecon Beacons National Park.   It comprises the western half of the National Park, stretching from Llandovery in the north to the edge of Merthyr Tydfil in the south, from Llandeilo in the west to Brecon in the east.  The landscape is breathtaking and extremely beautiful, it has been an area much cherished and admired by outdoor enthusiasts.  It consists of a series of upland areas including mountain and moorland and extends for approximately 300 square miles (760 square kilometres), roughly 45% of the total area of the Brecon Beacon National Park.

Forest Fawr Geopark

The oldest rocks found within the geopark date from the Ordovician geological period and can be found at the very extreme west of the geopark.  Rock strata dating from the later Silurian and Devonian are also present with considerable amounts of Carboniferous limestone exposures as well as some coal measures to the south of the geopark.  The country of Wales has played an extremely important role in the naming of geological time periods.  The three earliest periods that make up the Palaeozoic Era, the Cambrian, the Ordovician and the Silurian have names that have Welsh origins.  The Cambrian was named by Adam Sedgwick after Cambria (the Latin name for Wales), The Ordovician was named after the Ordovices tribe of North Wales (named by Charles Lapworth).  The Silurian was named by Roderick Murchison after the Silures tribe of Ancient Britons who inhabited south Wales during Roman times.

The Beautiful Countryside of Wales

Everything Dinosaur's van exploring Wales on a fossil hunting trip.

Everything Dinosaur’s van exploring Wales on a fossil hunting trip.

Picture credit: Everything Dinosaur

Fforest Fawr Geopark

The Everything Dinosaur vehicles get to some beautiful parts of the British Isles. Whilst on a fossil hunting expedition in Wales it is always a pleasure to spend a few minutes taking in the amazing countryside and fantastic views before returning to our scouring and searching of scree slopes for fossils.  We always take plenty of photographs, we like to leave what we find where we found it so others may enjoy them too.

The Fforest Fawr Geopark is well worth a visit, although we would recommend stout walking gear and sensible clothing when exploring some of the highest peaks in the whole of southern Britain.

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