04 August 2022
You’re never far away from the water on a visit to the Brecon Beacons National Park. Fast flowing rivers and gentle streams run through lush green woodland and the lovely landscape is also sprinkled with a selection of glistening man-made reservoirs and stillwater lakes.
With all this wonderful water to choose from, there are lots of places to go fishing in the Brecon Beacons. You can catch salmon on the River Usk, go fishing for pike in Llangorse Lake and cast a rod for native brown trout throughout much of the Brecon Beacons National Park.
Fishing is just one of the things you can do on a visit to the Brecon Beacons. For even more inspiration, read our guide to outdoor activities in this spectacular section of the Welsh countryside.
Fishing on the River Wye
The River Wye flows along the England/Wales border, kissing the top corner of the Brecon Beacons National Park and running through the northern slopes of the beautiful Black Mountains.
It’s one of the best places in the UK to catch grayling and you can also fish for brown trout, perch, pike and salmon during a relaxing day of angling on the river.
The Warren at Hay-on-Wye
The Warren at Hay-on-Wye is a beautiful riverside meadow and a popular spot for families to gather for picnics and go paddling and wild swimming in the River Wye. This stretch of the river is excellent for coarse angling and you can catch grayling, small trout, chubb, rock and pike from here. Day passes are available from F W Golesworthy & Sons who have an outdoor clothing shop in the town.
Just over the Welsh border in England, you’ll find Moccas Fishery in the village of Bredwardine. It’s well known for the excellent quality of salmon that can be caught here and day passes are available to purchase from The Red Lion Hotel which is based in the village.
This tributary of the River Wye runs along the edge of the Black Mountains and the top of the Brecon Beacons National Park between Llangorse Lake and Glasbury, passing through Talgarth and past the Pwll y Wrach Nature Reserve. Afon Llynfi is a wild brown trout fishery which also contains a strong population of grayling.
Fishing on the River Usk
The River Usk is particularly good for salmon and brown trout and you may well spot otters and kingfishers trying to catch their supper as you fish on this scenic stretch of water. The fishing season typically runs from March to October and there are almost 150 different fishing beats along the River Usk with specific places to cast your rod including:
The Glanusk Estate, Crickhowell
The Glanusk Estate near Crickhowell offers 5 miles of access to the River Usk with day tickets available to purchase for both salmon and trout fishing. Tuition can be provided so that novice anglers can enjoy fishing in the scenic surroundings, and a catch and release system is in place for trout and salmon due to diminishing stocks.
Up to two salmon can be kept for your supper after a day of fishing, but everything else must be returned to the water and barbless hooks should be used.
You can fish for brown trout and salmon from Llanfaes Bridge to Gwennies Lane on the River Usk in Brecon. Daily fishing permits and weekend tickets are available to buy from Brecon Pet and Garden Centre, The Guildhall and The Hours Cafe.
The water here flows mainly over gravel, making this one of the best stretches of the River Usk for wading and there is special parking available on the river banks for anglers with accessibility requirements.
Fishing is also available at the Brecon Canal Basin through the Merthyr Tydfil Angling Alliance.
There’s just over a mile of double bank fishing along the River Usk in Abergavenny with permit tickets available from The Bait Box, a fishing shop where you can stock up on supplies. The river runs along the bottom of Abergavenny close to Llanfoist with parking at Linda Vista Gardens. Wading is possible here and stocks of salmon and brown trout are both available to catch.
Usk is a picturesque market town at the south-east edge of the Brecon Beacons National Park and if you fancy fishing here, a water permit can be purchased from Sweets Fishing Tackle Shop. The owner of the shop, Jean Williams, is well known in the world of fly fishing; she stocks all the feathers, rods and reels you could need and has a wealth of local knowledge and information.
Talybont-on-Usk is one of the most popular spots for fishing in the Brecon Beacons National Park. Anglers can fish in the peaceful pools created by the Caerfanell River as it runs through the pretty village or follows its path to the main River Usk which is just a short walk away.
Talybont Reservoir is a 318-acre stillwater reservoir near the village that is kept stocked with brown trout. There are walking and cycling routes around this beautiful man-made Welsh lake so you can enjoy a lovely day in the great outdoors, and day fishing permits can be purchased from an on-site ticket machine.
Please note that fly fishing is the only method permitted on the reservoir and anglers are limited to taking a maximum of 6 trout per day.
Monmouthshire and Brecon Canal
Finally, a section of the Monmouthshire and Brecon Canal runs through Talybont-on-Usk and this is a perfect spot for little ones to learn how to fish in a safe and gentle environment with roach, perch, dace and chub all available to catch.
Fishing on the River Crai
Running through the unspoilt Crai Valley in the heart of the Brecon Beacons National Park, the River Crai is a fast-flowing stream in peaceful and picturesque surroundings. There are a trio of public angling beats on the river which are all good fly fishing spots for trout.
There’s a mile of double bank fishing at Lower Crai which links to the Upper Crai at Ty Gwyn Bridge. Only one trout can be taken per person and barbless hooks must be used so as not to hurt the large population of juvenile trout that live here.
The same rules apply to the Upper Crai with fly fishing permitted only and just one fish per rod to be taken. This peaceful part of the river flows near the remote and rural Crai village and is a good spot for wading into the water to try and catch a trout.
At the very bottom of the river is the wide Danygraig beat which is a shaded spot that’s covered by trees with easy wading for fly fishing. Again, only barbless hooks must be used and only one trout can be taken per angler.
At the head of the stream in the heart of the Brecon Beacons National Park is the 100-acre Crai Reservoir, a brown trout fishery that helps to populate the river. Daily fishing tickets are available between April and September at the Cnewr Estate farm office, which manages the reservoir.
Other fishing locations in the Brecon Beacons
Here are some of the other places to go fishing in the Brecon Beacons:
The largest natural lake in Wales, Llangorse Lake has stillwaters that are popular for a range of Brecon Beacons water sports including canoeing and kayaking. You can hire a fishing boat and row across Llangorse Lake to try and catch some of the pike, perch, roach, tench and bream that live here.
Due to the abundance of wildlife in this beautiful part of the Brecon Beacons, no fishing is allowed from the banks of Llangorse Lake.
Taff Fawr Valley reservoirs
There are a trio of reservoirs in the Taff Fawr Valley, an area of the Brecon Beacons where you can surround yourself with spectacular scenery such as wooded gorges, forest parks and waterfalls.
The best choice for fishing is the Llwyn-on Reservoir which is the largest of the three waters. This reservoir, surrounded by lovely woodland, has a good stock of rainbow trout which you can take home for your supper. The Cantref and Beacons Reservoirs are further up the Taff Fawr Valley and mainly stock brown trout which must be unharmed and returned to the water after catching.
At 320m above sea level, this remote 280-acre body of water is one of the highest reservoirs in the Brecon Beacons. Usk Reservoir is surrounded by the glorious Glasfynydd Forest and the Black Mountains, with dark skies that make it one of the best places in Wales to go stargazing.
You can follow a scenic 3.4-mile waymarked trail from the car park before casting your fishing rod out into the water. Usk Reservoir is known as one of the best stillwater trout fisheries in Wales and you can also catch perch alongside brown and rainbow trout.
Craig-y-Nos Country Park
Located at the bottom edge of the Brecon Beacons, the 40-acre Craig-y-Nos Country Park is a glorious Victorian pleasure garden that’s set along the banks of the River Tawe. You can follow waymarked trails through woodlands and meadows, enjoy a picnic alongside a lake or head to the tearoom for refreshments.
Fishing permits can be purchased from the Craig-y-Nos Visitor Centre if you fancy casting a rod out into the River Tawe which runs through the park.
Welsh fishing associations
The following Welsh fishing associations can provide access to various stretches of water in the Brecon Beacons:
- Merthyr Tydfil Angling Alliance is the largest angling club in Wales with members able to get access to seven riverside stretches of water along with reservoirs, ponds and the Brecon Canal. Adult membership is £65, junior membership is £20 and a pass for just the Brecon Canal is £20.
- Gwent Angling Society has exclusive access to stretches of water on the Talybont Reservoir, Afon Llynfi and River Monnow which flows between Abergavenny and Pontrilas with views to The Skirrid. Guest tickets are available at £6 for course fishing, £11 for trout beats and £16 for salmon.
- The Fishing Passport is an online booking service for fishing beats on the River Usk and River Wye. You can book fishing passes in advance and there’s information on the different rules and regulations for each patch of the river.
Brecon Beacons cottages for a fishing holiday
If you’re planning a fishing holiday to the Brecon Beacons, there are a selection of cottages that are close to the water, and some even have a stretch of private river that guests can access during a getaway.
Abercamlais Lodge | Sleeps 2 guests + 1 dog
This grotto-style lodge is set on a private country estate with wild meadows to walk in, a tennis court to play on and bike storage if you fancy exploring the area on two wheels. Best of all, there’s direct access to a stretch of the River Usk for fishing.
Apple Blossom Lodge | Sleeps 2 guests + 2 dogs
A romantic wooden cabin in an idyllic rural setting beside a pond, with a private hot tub perfect for relaxing evenings. 1.5 miles of fishing on the River Irfon is available for guests.
Corn View Llanilid | Sleeps 4 guests
This 19th-century barn conversion is set within a 220-acre farm in the heart of the Brecon Beacons National Park. The River Crai actually runs right the way through the farm, making this a peaceful spot to try your hand at trout fishing.
Buckland Mill | Sleeps 10 guests + 2 dogs
This large Brecon Beacons property is located on the banks of the River Usk where you can fish for salmon and trout and spot an array of local wildlife. There’s lots to explore in the surrounding countryside and a games room to keep everyone entertained on your return.
Plan your Brecon Beacons getaway
This is just a small selection of the cottages available throughout the Brecon Beacons. Browse our full collection of holiday cottages in the Brecon Beacons to find your perfect base, by clicking the button below.
Disclaimer: Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information at the time of writing,
please ensure you check carefully before making any decisions based on the contents within this article.