This week’s travel journey takes us to Snowdonia, Wales.
Snowdonia National Park was established in 1951 as the third National park in Britain, following the Peak District and the Lake District. It covers 827 square miles and has 37 miles of coastline. The Snowdonia National Park covers parts of the counties of Gwynedd and Conwy. The principal ranges of the traditional Snowdonia are Snowdon itself, the Glydarau, the Carneddau the Moelwynion and the Moel Hebog ranges. All of Wales’ 3000ft mountains are to be found within the first three of these massifs and are most popular with visitors.
More than 26,000 people live within the park and 58.6% of the population could speak Welsh in 2011.
The region has a temperate maritime climate with typically warm rather than hot summers and cool to cold winters.
Snowdonia rarely experiences very extreme weather, meaning Snowdonia can be visited throughout the year. On average the hottest month is August and the coldest is January. Rainfall on average falls fairly evenly throughout the year, the wettest month is November and the driest is April.
The weather is unpredictable, as with the rest of the UK and it is possible to see elements of all four seasons in one day. The area may experience some snowfall in the winter. It is advisable for visitors to check the weather forecast before they arrive in Snowdonia to get a better idea of the sort of clothing they will need during their trip. Bringing hooded warm waterproof coats and hats will ensure visitors are prepared for any spells of wind and rain the region may experience.
May is magnificent for sampling springtime in Snowdonia; also further cause for celebration can be found on the Ffestiniog & Welsh Highland Railways as they host their annual beer festival in May – all aboard! They also run jazz trains during the summer – keep eyes peeled for local bulletin boards.
The top three things to do/see in Snowdonia:
Take a hike up Snowdon
Snowdon (Yr Wyddfa in Welsh) is the highest mountain in Wales and England. It’s one of our most famous and regonisable landmarks and is well worth a visit. Standing tall over the village of Llanberis, Snowdon is a part of a close-knit family of jagged peaks and can offer views of Snowdonia, Anglesey, Pembrokeshire and Ireland.We recommend the Lanberis path if this is your first time climbing Snowdon. If you fancy to just sit back and relax then why not take the Snowdon Mountain Railway to the top.
Take a trip to Dolgoch Falls
Dolgoch Falls is pretty spectacular at all times of the year, especially if you take the trouble to climb all the way up to the top level. The waterfalls can be reached via a short walk and are part of the Nant Dol-goch stream. They consist of a series of waterfalls which cascade down a rocky wooded ravine in the mountainside into a deep pool below.
Admire the scenery, take some fab photos and explore the well maintained woodland paths. Good footwear is recommended if you are planning on doing the longer route as it is quite steep in places and can be slippery after rainfall. Alternatively take the short walk to see a cave and the falls. Talylyn railway runs over the falls.
Visit the traditional Welsh Village of Betsy Y Coed
Explore the quaint little village of Betsy Y Coed where you can sit and watch the birds sing, treat yourself to some afternoon tea or a spot of lunch and enjoy the traditional Welsh scenery.
If you are feeling really adventurous, then why not live a little and ride the fastest zip line in the world at Zip World Forest!
When it comes to dining in Wales, then don’t leave Wales without trying;
Providing etymologists with a headache for centuries – it was originally known as Welsh rabbit, though at no point was rabbit one of the ingredients! This is, quite simply, the world’s finest cheese on toast.
If you are looking for a sweet treat then take afternoon tea anywhere in Wales and the star of the show, usually to be found nestling on the highest tier, is the famous Bara Brith, a traditional fruit cake with a unique flavour.
Look out for another exciting adventure in England next week!
Researcher and Writer