Just before the Llugwy joins its streams with the Conway, there is a remarkable bridge called Pont y Pair,* thrown across the former river in several arches, strongly based upon the solid rocks. These natural piers, high and precipitous, overhang the dashing waters which break over the craggy ledges, on the points of which the bridge is so boldly and curiously constructed. In the wintry or stormy months, the meeting and conflict of this flood of waters displays at once the most fearful and fantastic images to the eye. The falls and thunder of the torrents are truly awful; nor are the extraordinary contrasts and combinations of the surrounding scenery less in unison with the romantic character of the spot. The steep indented cliffs, grey and worn, fantastically clothed with wood, and white dwellings dotting the hill-side, exhibit, blended into one, the mingled charm of the terrific and the beautiful.
* In its passage through the village the river Llugwy meets with such obstruction amongst the rocks, that it becomes so shockingly infuriated in the conflict, as to have the appearance of a boiling caldron, from which circumstance, the bridge over it takes the name of Pont y Pair, the Caldron Bridge.
— Thomas Roscoe, Wanderings and Excursions in North Wales, 1836
Near Bettws y Coed is also Pont y Pair, a most singular bridge, flung over the Llugwy, consisting of four arches, placed on the rude rocks, which form most durable piers. These rocks are precipitous, and in high floods exhibit to the passenger most awful cataracts below the bridge. The scenery beyond, of rocky mountains, fringed with woods, is very striking.
— Joseph Hemingway, Panorama of the beauties, curiosities, and antiquities of North Wales, exhibited in its Mountains, Vallies, Waterfalls, Lakes, Cities and Towns, Castles and Ruins, etc. Intended as a Pocket Companion to the Tourist and Traveller, 1839
Pont-y-Pair (Bridge of the Cauldron) on the Afon Llugwy in Betws-y-Coed was built in the 15th century and was later enlarged. Originally used for pack horses it was also later used for a time by coaches on the London-to-Holyhead Irish mail route until Telford’s A5 road opened through the town.
Pont-y-Pair Rock Cannon;
The Falls at Pont-y-Pair, 1803 painting by English artist Joshua Cristall (1767-1847)