Previously one of the UK’s best-kept secrets, although the cat is well and truly out of the bag now, North Wales was recently hailed one of the world’s best regions to visit in 2017, by Lonely Planet. With its combination of unique attractions, beautiful countryside and quaint, historical towns and coastline, North Wales has something for everyone. However, some of the established things to do when you visit aren’t exactly kind to the purse strings; so, we’ve put together our top tips for enjoying a trip to North Wales which won’t break the bank.
- Walk the Conwy walls
Conwy is one of Europe’s most complete surviving medieval towns, with its iconic castle having been constructed between 1283 and 1289 and still remaining remarkably intact today. Having Snowdonia as its breath-taking backdrop gives the town of Conwy an appeal to not only those who love the historical architecture, but also visitors who appreciate great views and the bustling nearby quayside, where you can enjoy a cracking fish and chip supper. Walking the town walls (a world heritage site!) is free, and gives you great views of the town itself, as well as the castle and the estuary.
Whilst you’re in Conwy, why not also pop by the smallest house in Great Britain to have your picture taken outside the incredible 72 inch-wide home? Tickets to go inside cost £1 for adults, with children at half-price, but we can guarantee it won’t take you too long to look around!
- Enjoy Nefyn beach
Considered one of the best beaches in North Wales, Morfa Nefyn is an essential stop-off when you visit the area, whatever the time of year. With its unspoilt sandy beach and stunning surroundings, it also makes the ideal place to walk your pooch, with no dog restrictions all-year-round.
- Take a selfie at Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch
The longest place name in Great Britain, this railway station in North Wales is a selfie opportunity too good to miss! Translating as “St Mary’s Church in the Hollow of the White Hazel Near to the Rapid Whirlpool of Llantysilio of the Red Cave”, you’ll find this iconic sign on the island of Anglesey, which is accessible by car, train and plane.
- Scale Mount Snowdon
You can’t visit North Wales without taking the opportunity to enjoy the sights of Snowdon. With a variety of routes to the top, including family-friendly ones as well as more challenging climbs for experienced mountaineers, this is one mountain that pretty much everyone can enjoy – and it’s free! If walking isn’t your thing and you have some spends burning a hole in your pocket, there is the option of the stunningly picturesque train ride up Snowdon instead.
- Visit Blaenau Ffestiniog
Ok, so a trip to see the ‘slate capital of the world’ might not seem like your bag on the face of it, but there is more to this historic mining town than first meets the eye. If you’re into mountain biking then the craggy, steep mountains are a mecca for like-minded thrill-seekers. If you’re more interested in the arts, a stroll through town takes you on the free poetry walk. With over seventy numbered slate bands displaying a range of traditional and contemporary phrases, sayings and local references, this walk gives a true reflection of this town’s heritage and hopes for the future.
As well as the free activities of exploring the town and beautiful scenery, Blaenau Ffestiniog also offers a pretty amazing amount of family and adrenaline-fuelled fun with Zip World. The centre here includes the awesome Bounce Below, where a huge slate mine cavern has been transformed into a gigantic bouncy playground for ages 7+. Just around the corner is the immense Zip World Titan, currently the largest zip-wire zone in Europe, with over 8000m of high flying zip-wire distance to enjoy/endure.
Just missing out on our top 5 things to see in North Wales are the achingly picturesque Betws-y-coed and the hike-tastic Beddgelert, both areas of outstanding natural beauty in their own right, and it won’t cost you a bean to take in the sights.
*The information presented is accurate as of December 2016. Please check all prices before you go!