Perched on the rocky fringe of Western Europe, Wales packs a lot of physical beauty into its small mass of land. Its mountain ranges, lush valleys, ragged coastline, old-fashioned market towns and ancient castles all invite long and repeated visits. Here are some of the places you should visit when in Wales:
The bustling capital city of Wales, Cardiff is the best place to kick off your trip. Visit the magnificient Cardiff castle. Built on foundations that date from the year 50AD, exploring the Castle is one of the best things to do in Cardiff if you’re a proper history geek. The 11th-century castle gives visitors a great introduction to Welsh history, and a climb to the top of the keep offers stunning views of the city and surrounding countryside. Apparently, the castle was built for the 3rd Marquis of Bute who, at that time, was reputedly the world’s richest man with some extravagant taste. And you can definitely see the grandeur once you are here.
You can also walk the Taff Trail. Starting off at the Starting at the Roald Dahl Plass in Cardiff Bay, the Taff Trail is a 50+ mile (80 Km) trail that leads all the way from the city right into the Brecon Beacons National Park. If you don’t want to walk the entire distance, you can definitely make a dent on a few miles stroll from the city itself.
Cardiff features a raving nightlife, fantastic eateries, cool local shops, a beautiful bay area called the Mermaid Quay, and an amazing shopping experience at what is known as the Victorian arcades. Alternatively, Cardiff is a great base for exploring the South of Wales! A couple day trips from Cardiff could include Brecon Beacons, Pembrokeshire Coast, and St. Davids.
Snowdonia National Park
Let me clear this up for you. Snowdonia is more than just a park. It’s over 800 miles of beautiful and diverse landscapes, and a place where people, live, work and play. Home to Mount Snowdon, the tallest mountain in Wales, as well as other, gentler inclines, Snowdonia offers the perfect mix of activities for a busy holiday.
Snowdonia is that part of Wales which is still as raw as when it must have been born from mother nature. Situated in northern Wales, here is the place to go hiking, enjoy camping, take a picnic basket or just chill and meditate your stress away. The park’s historic Snowdon Mountain Railway climbs to the summit of Wales’s highest mountain, Mount Snowdon, offering views across the sea to Ireland. The park is also home to an extensive network of trails, over 100 lakes and craggy peaks like Cedar Idris and Tryfan. Snowdonia is formed of several villages, each unique in character, boasting charming B&B accommodation and holiday cottages, cafes and restaurants and always a pub with a roaring fireplace to warm your hands by after a long day out in the air.
Click here to read about the least visited countries in Europe!
Pembrokeshire is a county in Wales that is a unique ecosystem in itself. The breathtaking ocean with its crashing waves, as well as its green and fresh landscapes, is a healing sight for any busy mind. There is ample to explore, from adventure parks and castles to boat trips and family festivals, Pembrokeshire is a county you will be sure to fall in love with.
The Pembrokeshire Coast National Park is your own personal heaven. This coastal national park covers the south-western peninsular region of Wales and makes for a great vacation for nature lovers. The Pembrokeshire Coast Path is the most renowned around here, with its 300 km winding road that takes you to the top of the cliffs. You will see the seals lazing on rocks and birds soar to catch fish fresh out of the frothy sea here. There are also various opportunities here for you to indulge in wind surfing, kite surfing, swimming in the sea and fishing. Also, go out to the taverns and pubs of ancient villages and catch a glimpse of their cathedrals and castles. The county of Pembrokeshire is easily one of the most beautiful places to visit in Wales.
Anglesey is a stunning island to visit and explore in Wales known for its beaches and ancient sites. A trip to the Isle of Anglesey is a-many-things-in-one experience. It is a place that inspires with its breathtaking landscapes, virgin coastlines and quaint towns. It is a place filled with fun and activities. You can spend time walking along the scenic walk, explore beautiful gardens and spend time on stunning beaches.
Located just off the northwest coast of Wales, Anglesey is a place to relax and lose yourself in the winding lanes which cut through wild rugged landscapes. It is home to a spectacular coastal path which has 125 miles of gorgeous scenery to explore, on foot or by kayak. Explore Parys Mountain, aka what was once the largest copper mine in the world. Go on a hike to South Stack Lighthouse and enjoy the stunning views. Get fascinated by the historic sites including the medieval town of Beaumaris. Stroll one of the many beaches (Penrhos Beach, Newborough Beach, Benllech Beach) breathing in the restorative ocean air. There is so much to do and so much to see. You’ll love it.
Ever wanted to visit the smallest house in Great Britain? Or a castle with some of the earliest surviving stone machicolations in Britain? Head to Conwy!
An ancient town with a rich history, Conwy is located in North Wales on the Conwy Estuary near the forests of Snowdonia. The dark-stoned fortress of Conwy Castle dominates the cityscape. Views from the battlements offer visitors a bird’s eye view of the castle’s Great Hall and of the walls and towers that surround the medieval town. You can also visit Plas Mawr, which is a display of the wealth and pomp of Conwy’s past. An afternoon in Bodnant Garden will also delight all the senses. With vast lawns and unique nooks to discover, a little picnic by the relaxing stream is a good idea. Don’t miss the 14th century Aberconwy House and the smallest house in Great Britain. Standing at just 10 x 6 feet, you might have to squeeze your way into it.
Click here to read about five best places to visit in Northern Ireland!
Have you read Neeraj Narayanan’s book – This Guy’s On His Own Trip yet? It’s right now #1 bestseller in the travel books category on Amazon. Click here to buy your copy!