Garn Lakes Local Nature Reserve used to be an area covered in spoil tips and old colliery workings but following an extensive land reclamation scheme it was officially opened in 1997 as a beautiful area for residents and visitors. It covers 40 hectares, and with lakes and grasslands it provides a diverse habitat and breeding grounds for a wide range of wildlife.
As you stroll around the lakes you are likely to see Tufted Ducks, Skylarks, Snipes, Redshanks and Little Grebes. You might also catch sight of migrating birds from Africa such as the Common Sandpiper and the Willow Warbler. A new wetland area with bird hide was created recently, so to get the very best from your visit make sure that you’ve got your binoculars and a bird book handy!
Garn Lakes are a great starting point for a number of walks through the Industrial Landscape, for instance walk past the Railway towards Big Pit National Coal Museum and you will pass Coity Tips, early examples of conical spoil tips from the coal workings. Around the Lakes there are also numerous places for a picnic and to watch the world go by – even watch one of the Blaenavon and Pontypool Steam Trains chuffing along the track.