With its forests, woodlands and quaint towns that have stood for centuries, Cymru — better known as Wales — is pioneering new paths for those who want to slow down, savour the landscape and drink in pubs where the vats predate Wales’s legendary warrior, Owen Glendower. The poet Edward Thomas described ancient Welsh paths as “potent, magic things” on which you can “make time as nothing” while “meandering over many centuries”. For me, walking is both necessity and pleasure — even at home. With no car, I trace paths through Durban to work and back, rain or shine. So into Wales, filled with dragons, rugby and song that can lift any heart. It sounded the perfect way to wind down. Like all good journeys, this one was to involve train travel. My brother and I set off from Craven Arms station in Shropshire, England, with detailed instructions in hand, walking boots bristling with anticipation. My mind raced ahead as we tucked into thick slices of mum’s fruitcake that was more sherry than fl...

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