heading across the pond to the United Kingdom, many will make plenty of time
for England and Ireland; some even may head north to Scotland. But outside of
people within the UK, you don’t often hear about people visiting Wales, the
tiny country west of England. Wales has a lot to offer, from beaches to inland resorts,
famous castles and can easily be traveled to through cheap domestic flights within
Europe and the UK. When starting your trip in the North of Wales, there are
several can’t miss spots.
Welsh Resort Town
many Englanders, a popular local holiday is heading to the beaches of Wales,
something the country has quite a bit of. The north is no exception with the
beautiful beach town of Llandudno. Llandudno is Wales’ largest resort town. While
home to many modern attractions for tourists to enjoy, boardwalk included, one
of the first things you’ll notice are the Victorian style Bed and Breakfasts
and hotels that line the beach area. Many locals and tourists will start frequenting
the beaches as early as April, and enjoy them through the fall.
the gorgeous views of the area lies the Great Orme, which can be accessed by
car, cabin lift or a tram system that was built in 1902. The Great Orme
features picturesque views from the top and is one of two artificial ski slopes
in Wales. One of the best ways to experience it is by driving along the coast, leading
all the way up to the Great Orme Summit complex. Once at the summit, on a clear
day, you can get views of the Isle of Man and the Lake District in Northern
The popular beach resort town of Llandudno from the Boardwalk
a quick five minute drive from Llandudno is Conwy, where the famous Conwy
Castle lies. Conwy is a walled town, with the primary focus being the can’t
miss Conwy Castle, built in only six years between 1283 and 1289, and constructed
by Edward I. Visiting Conwy Castle is definitely an experience, as is visiting
and walking through any ancient castle in Europe. While a lot of it has
deteriorated over the years, guides will tell you where everything was and how
it looked as you walk around the Castle grounds. A trek all the way to the top
of each tower (a narrow walk by the way!) will give you a magnificent view of
the whole town, castle and the railway bridge built to the castle in the 19th
of the castle, Conwy is a small town that does offer tourists pubs, restaurants
and other little tourist attractions. Head towards the water and you’ll find
the smallest house in Great Britain. Measuring in at 10 ft x 6 ft, it was once
actually inhabited by a family and most recently by a fisherman who was too
tall to even stand up in the house! Today visitors can take a peek inside, for
a small fee of course.
A view of the famous Conwy Castle from one of the towers
The Smallest House in Great Britain
Heading south of Conwy, you’ll run into
Wales most popular inland resort town, Betws-y-Coed. The small village,
population just 534, is the main village of the famous Snowdonia National Park.
The exceptionally beautiful and peaceful area is where the River Conwy meets
the River Llugwy and River Lledr. While there isn’t much more than a few café’s
and tourist shops, the village shouldn’t be missed on your trip to Northern
Wales, even if you’re just stopping by to get a view of the scenery.
The famous lush scenery of Betws-y-Coed
If you’re into hiking and spending time
in the great outdoors, stick around the Snowdonia National Park area after
leaving Betws-y-Coed. Here you’ll find trails to hike through, with most people
focusing on the popular Snowdon Mountain, though there are several mountains
surrounding it that are less busy. There is of course a way of getting to the
top if you’re not a fan of hiking or just want to get there quicker. The
Snowdon Mountain Railway is available for visitors to get them to the top of
Snowdon, the highest peak in England and Wales.
Name You Won’t Forget, But Can’t Remember
Another quick stop on your tour in
Northern Wales is the longest named town in Europe (and only one of in the
world!). That would be Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch.
Go ahead, try pronouncing it! Llanfair PG, as it’s commonly shortened
to, is a village on the island of Anglesey in Wales. Many tourists only stop by
on their way through Wales to get a picture of the town sign. Wondering what on
earth the translation is? The name of the town means “St Mary's church
in the hollow of the white hazel near the rapid whirlpool of Llantysilio
of the red cave.” Easy to remember, right!?
A sign by the train station in town shows the English translation of the long Welsh name
everything in such close distance, it’s easy to spend a full day exploring all
that North Wales has to offer. Wales is easy to get to through England. You can
find cheap flights to London or cheap flights to Europe and make your way over
there from a smaller, local airport on one of the many cheap domestic flights. While
often forgotten by many, Wales is a wonderful country to explore, through the
north and beyond.