A small manufacturing town, situated on the slope of a hill, with a considerable miscellaneous trade.
On the coast of Cardiganshire, situated on a bold eminence, overhanging the sea, at the junction of the Ystwith and the Rhydol. The castle – its chief lion – was built by Gilbert de Strongbow, in the reign of Henry I., and now a mere ruin, is throned upon a projection of slate rock, protecting the town on the sea side, while on the other it commands the entire estuary of the two rivers, meeting at their point of confluence. Northward of the castle is a level beach, some hundred yards in length, to which succeeds a long range of slate rocks, worn into caverns and recesses by the dashing of the waves. Among the ruins is the favourite promenade, which, from its elevation, commands a magnificent view of the whole line of coast that forms Cardigan Bay. Nearly in the middle of this bay Aberystwith is seated, whence may be seen to the north a long irregular line, formed at first by the projecting coast of Merioneth, and then continued out to sea by the long mountainous promontory of Carnarvon, terminated by the Isle of Bardsey. There is no station southward of Carnarvonshire from which the Welsh Alps may be so advantageously seen as from Aberystwith Castle, or some of the surrounding cliffs. The lofty hills which bound the estuary of the Dovey, and raise their broad backs far above the Cardigan rocks, are surmounted by Cader Idris and its subject cliffs. These are overtopped by the giant mountains of Carnarvonshire, among which, in clear weather, the sharp peak of Snowdon itself may be discerned pre-eminent above the neighbouring crags. This wide expanse of water, diversified by numerous steamers and vessels in every direction – some steering out for different ports in the bay, some further out at sea, and slowly shaping their course for Liverpool, Bristol, or Irish havens, while others, almost stationary, are busily employed in fishing – affords a varied and pleasant panorama of marine scenery. Pont ar Fynach, or the Devil’s Bridge, is not more than twelve miles distant.
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The town is romantically situated at the foot of the celebrated Cader Idris, for the exploration of which it will be found necessary to have a guide or ordnance map.