We had never heard of Myddfai before we found our home here in 2014. It is a tiny village (current population around 400), surrounded by views that still take our breath away at every turn, just above the town of Llandovery in Carmarthenshire. Myddfai is on the western edge of the Brecon Beacons and is famous for the legends of The physicians of Myddfai and the Lady of the Lake.
The Lady of the Lake
The story of the Lady of the lake is based around Llyn y Fan Fach, a stunning lake, which many of our guests walk to whilst staying with us. The legend tells of a farm boy grazing his sheep daily by the lake, who saw and fell in love with the lady of the lake. She agreed to marry him on condition that if he strike her three times, she would leave him and return to the lake. Sadly, he did strike her three times and she left him to return to her other world.
They had three sons together, who became the Physicians of Myddfai – thought to be some of the earliest herbalists practicing and you can see many of their remedies in the myddfai community hall and visitor centre (about 1 mile from us).
Early herbal remedies, many still in use today
The Physicians have a long line, with history from as far back as 13th century in Carmarthen. The Red Book of Hergest, ( instructions for preparing herbal medicine), which dates back to the 14th century is thought to be associated with the Physicians.
The myths and legends inspire many of the local arts and crafts, and there is a wonderful selection available from both the community centre shop in myddfai, and further afield in Llandeilo at crafts alive. My friend and art teacher, Amanda Rose has been inspired by the legends in her print making and her pottery.
Local experts can bring the legends to life
If you are interested in finding out more about the Myddfai legends, the local herbal traditions (many still being practiced today) or foraging for the wild plants used in the herbal remedies, we can connect you with local experts before your stay in Myddfai so that you can pre-book time with them.