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The 19 Best Places to Visit in Wales

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Wales is a magical land known for its breathtaking natural landscapes, well-preserved historic sites, and charming villages just waiting to be explored.

From vibrant cities like Cardiff to imposing castles and award-winning beaches, Wales has destinations to captivate every traveler.

One of the most special things about Wales is its majestic mountains. Snowdonia National Park boasts the highest peak in Wales, Mount Snowdon, offering hikers and nature enthusiasts a thrilling challenge. 

If you prefer a more relaxed vibe, head to the stunning Welsh coastline, where you’ll find charming seaside towns and pristine beaches. Don’t miss the opportunity to explore the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park, renowned for its rugged cliffs and idyllic bays perfect for water sports and coastal walks.

Wales is also steeped in history and mythology, with numerous medieval castles dotting its landscape. Step back in time to Conwy Castle or Caernarfon Castle, marveling at their grandeur and imagining the tales of knights and kings that once echoed within their walls.

Ready to embark on an unforgettable journey? Then read the post to discover what are the 19 best places to visit in Wales. 

Let the country’s stunning landscapes, vibrant culture, and warm-hearted people welcome you with open arms!

The 19 Best Places to Visit in Wales

Snowdonia National Park (Eryri National Park)

Nestled amidst the stunning landscapes of Wales, Snowdonia National Park (Eryri National Park) is a nature lover’s paradise.

Snowdonia sprawls across an expansive 823 square miles, and its fame stems from being home to Mount Snowdon, Wales’s highest peak.

The peak of this glorious mountain can be reached through hiking or the historic Snowdon Mountain Railway, which offers passengers a scenic journey with amazing views extending all the way to Ireland.

Snowdonia National Park is a haven of towering peaks, captivating valleys, majestic waterfalls, and hidden paths that invite you to lose yourself in its serene beauty.

As you explore, you’ll be treated to 74 miles of captivating coastline, 11,000 hectares of native woodlands, and an extensive network of 1497 miles of trails, beckoning you to embark on unforgettable adventures.

In addition to exploring Mount Snowdon and its surrounding trails, visitors can enjoy a range of activities like hiking, rock climbing, kayaking, and cycling.

During your adventures in Snowdonia, expect to see a dazzling array of wildlife. The rare Lili’r Wyddfa flower, adorable wild ponies, wild mountain goats, and the red-billed caught (Great
Britain’s rarest crow) are some of the fascinating creatures you’ll spot here.

Brecon Beacons National Park

Beautiful sunrise over the Llangattock Escarpment in the Brecon Beacons National Park in Wales, UK.

When it comes to outstanding natural beauty, the Brecon Beacons National Park is a must-visit. 

Located in Powys and spanning an area of 520 square miles, this park features a medley of rolling green hills, cascading waterfalls, and tranquil lakes that create a postcard-perfect scenery

You’ll be awed by breathtaking waterfalls like Henrhyd Falls, where the water plunges into a pool surrounded by lush foliage. 

And don’t miss the park’s magical night sky, which offers unparalleled stargazing opportunities.

Visitors to the park can also encounter a fascinating array of wildlife. Keep an eye out for the graceful red kites soaring through the skies, playful otters frolicking in rivers, and the iconic Welsh mountain ponies that roam freely across the moorlands. 

If you’re lucky, you might even spot a majestic peregrine falcon or a group of adorable mountain sheep.

Embark on exhilarating hikes, such as the challenging ascent of Pen y Fan, the highest peak in southern Britain

Explore the network of trails, from gentle strolls along riverbanks to more adventurous treks into the heart of the mountains.

Pembrokeshire Coast National Park

Stack Rocks, Pembrokeshire Coast National Park, Wales, UK.

The Pembrokeshire Coast National Park is a coastal paradise nestled along the western shores of Wales.

And while the park is one of the smallest of the UK’s National Parks, it has a huge array of stunning landscapes begging to be discovered.

Its 186 miles of pristine coastline boast some of the most spectacular sea cliffs and golden sandy beaches in the country, making it a masterpiece in its own right.

Just imagine picturesque cliffs plunging into the azure waters of the Celtic Sea, creating a dramatic backdrop for your explorations.

The park is also home to craggy volcanic outcrops, towering limestone cliffs, seashore and coastal slopes, heathland, mountain, moor, and woodland.

While exploring these fascinating habitats, you’ll come across bountiful wildlife. Adorable seals basking on the rocky shores, graceful dolphins frolicking in the waves, an array of seabirds soaring overhead, and even the occasional red deer are some of the creatures you’ll see here.

There is no shortage of activities to enjoy in the park. Embark on scenic coastal walks, breathing in the salty sea breeze as you traverse the renowned Pembrokeshire Coast Path.

Venture out on a boat tour to spot seals and dolphins, or try your hand at thrilling water sports such as kayaking or surfing.

Conwy Castle

Conwy Castle, Wales, UK.

Designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Cowny Castle is unarguably one of the most beautiful castles in Europe.

Conwy is located in North Wales and was erected between 1283 and 1289 by Edward I during his conquest of the country, making it one of the most important surviving medieval fortifications in Britain.

Built from stone on a coastal ridge, the castle offerers visitors a looking out across the mountains, the verdant Welsh countryside, and the sea.

Conwy Castle is divided into an outer and inner ward protected by 21 towers and three gateways.

On the internal part of the castle, which houses the most intact set of medieval royal apartments in Wales, you can have a sneak peek of the King’s Apartments, a restored spiral staircase, and the magnificent Great Hall.

Recommended Read: A Guide To The Most Beautiful Castles in Wales

Cardiff

Cardiff Castle with yellow flowers in front

Cardiff, Wale’s capital city, offers a delightful blend of history, culture, and modern attractions that make it a must-visit destination.

The city is home to several iconic sites and attractions that draw visitors from near and far. 

A must-visit site is the legendary Cardiff Castle, a 2000-year-old medieval fortress featuring lavish interiors and enchanting gardens. 

For art enthusiasts, the National Museum Cardiff is a treasure trove of masterpieces, housing an extensive collection of Welsh and international artwork.

Wander through the streets of the city center, which are lined with Victorian architecture, and hidden arcades filled with independent boutiques.

Sports enthusiasts will be thrilled to visit the Principality Stadium, a world-class venue that hosts thrilling rugby matches and other major sporting events. 

The vibrant Cardiff Bay area is another must-see, offering a stunning waterfront, a wealth of dining options, and the chance to delve into the city’s maritime history at the Wales Millennium Centre.

St Davids

St David's Cathedral, Pembrokeshire, Wales, Great Britain.

St Davids (St. David’s) is a tiny city with big charm and a rich spiritual heritage. Tucked away in Pembrokeshire County, UK’s smallest city is the resting place of St David, Wales’s patron saint, and was named after him.

The city is also renowned for harboring the iconic St David’s Cathedral, an ancient place of worship that dates back to the 12th century. 

Constructed from dusky purple sandstone, this gorgeous cathedral boasts stunning Gothic architecture, serene chapels, and beautifully maintained grounds. It’s a place of tranquility and reflection, attracting pilgrims and history enthusiasts from around the world.

Aside from the cathedral, St Davids is also a gateway to breathtaking natural beauty. Just a stone’s throw away, you’ll find the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park, where rugged cliffs, golden beaches, and pristine coastline come together in harmony. 

The nearby Ramsey Island is a haven for wildlife, with seals, seabirds, and even the occasional dolphin gracing its shores.

Ramsey Island

Hikers taking a break on the picnic benches on RSPB Ramsey Island, Pembrokeshire, Wales, UK.

Ramsey Island is a wonderland for outdoor enthusiasts. Nestled along the mesmerizing coast of Wales, off the shores of Pembrokeshire, this small island is a sanctuary of wildlife and untouched landscapes.

Here, you’ll find a paradisiac collection of diverse habitats, from dramatic cliffs to lush grasslands and pristine beaches.

The island’s coastline is alive with breeding birds, including peregrine falcons, choughs, ravens, and seabirds that nest on the 100-meter-high cliffs.

Ramsey is also the largest single-pupping site in the southwest and it is not unusual to see more than 60 seal pups on one beach alone by the middle of September. 

Exploring Ramsey Island offers a sense of tranquility and a chance to reconnect with nature. Take a guided boat trip to the island, where you can embark on scenic walks, immersing yourself in the raw beauty of the landscapes. 

Marvel at the towering sea cliffs and the mesmerizing colors of the wildflowers that adorn the meadows. Discover hidden coves and pristine beaches that invite you to relax and unwind.

Glamorgan Heritage Coast

An aerial view of The beach and cliffs at Dunraven Bay at Southerndown on the south coast of Wales, UK.

The Glamorgan Heritage Coast is a 14-mile stretch of coastline in the Vale of Glamorgan, South Wales, UK.

Stretching 14 miles along the southern shores of Wales, from Aberthaw to Porthcawl, this heritage coast is a captivating blend of rugged cliffs, golden beaches, and stunning vistas that will leave you in awe.

One of the most famous attractions along the Glamorgan Heritage Coast is the iconic Southerndown Beach. It has expansive sandy shores, towering cliffs, and dramatic rock formations that’ll make you feel like stepping into a postcard-worthy scene. 

For history enthusiasts, the ruins of Dunraven Castle are a must-see. Perched on a cliff edge, the castle provides a glimpse into the area’s past and offers sweeping views of the coast. 

Nearby, you can explore the charming town of Ogmore-by-Sea, with its picturesque river estuary and historic stepping stones.

Caernarfon Castle

Caernarfon Castle, Wales, UK.

Beautifully perched on the banks of the River Seiont, in north-west Wales, Caernarfon Castle is often considered one of the greatest buildings of the Middle Ages.

This late 11th-century medieval fortress was built by Edward I between 1283 and 1330 and boasts impressive architecture.

Caernarfon has polygonal towers instead of the traditional round ones, color-coded stones, and eagle statues.

You can see all of the Caernarfon’s details and impressive architectural features by walking through the towers, from the Eagle Tower to the Queen’s Tower, which is filled with medals, uniforms, weapons, and historical displays.

Wales Coastal Path

Female Backpacker Looking Into Distance From A Cliff At Rocky Sea Shore On A Cloudy Day In Rhossili, Wales Coast Path, Wales, UK.

Imagine a coastal adventure like no other — welcome to the Wales Coastal Path. Spanning over 870 miles, this remarkable path traces the entire coastline of Wales, showcasing the country’s natural splendor and captivating landscapes. 

Heralded as the first dedicated coast path in the world to cover the entire length of a country’s coastline, the trail stretches from the vibrant city of Chester in the north to the charming town of Chepstow in the south.

It encompasses 11 national nature reserves, sheer cliffs, award-winning beaches, and hidden coves that’ll leave you in awe. 

From the rugged landscapes of Pembrokeshire to the idyllic shores of Anglesey, each section of the path has its own unique charm.

Some of the famous sites and attractions that will leave you awe-inspired include Harlech Castle, perched on a hilltop with sweeping views of Cardigan Bay. 

Another must-see is the enchanting village of Portmeirion, a whimsical Mediterranean-inspired oasis nestled on the coast. 

Make sure to also visit the stunning Gower Peninsula, the first place in the UK to be designated as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

Portmeirion

Portmeirion is a tourist village in North Wales, UK.
Photo Credit: BBA Photography/Shutterstock

Portmeirion is a village that transports you to a realm of whimsical charm and architectural splendor. Located in Gwynedd, North Wales, this enchanting village was designed and built by Sir Clough Williams-Ellis, who spent over 50 years creating a place where beauty, nature, and art intertwine seamlessly.

The history of Portmeirion dates back to the early 20th century when Williams-Ellis began transforming the site into a unique Italian village

Inspired by Mediterranean architecture, the architect meticulously designed colorful buildings, ornate gardens, and serene piazzas that exude an air of tranquility and fantasy.

What makes Portmeirion truly special is its one-of-a-kind ambiance. Walking through its narrow streets feels like stepping into a storybook setting. 

The village is a vibrant tapestry of pastel-colored facades, winding pathways, and picturesque viewpoints overlooking the shimmering Dwyryd Estuary. 

Pembroke Castle

Pembroke Castle, Wales, UK.

Considered one of the most beautiful Welsh castles, Pembroke Castle is a commanding medieval fortress located in the town of Pembroke, in the southwestern part of the country. 

The castle was built in the 11th century by the Normans on a location that has been occupied at least since the Roman period, and it has played a significant role in Welsh history since then. 

One of the most famous owners of the castle was William Marshal, who became known as one of the greatest knights of his time. 

Pembroke Castle is also known for being the birthplace of the legendary Henry VII, who inaugurated the Tudor Dynasty. He was born in the castle in 1457m reputedly in the tower now known as the Henry VII Tower.

Visitors can marvel at the castle’s ruined defensive walls and towers, as well as the Great Keep, which stands 80 feet high, is and it’s one of the best-preserved in the UK.

Recommended Read: The Most Beautiful Castles in Wales

Tenby

Tenby Harbour, Tenby, Pembrokeshire, Wales, UK.

If you’re looking for a breezy and luscious escape, Tenby is the place to go. Considered one of Wales’ top seaside towns, Tenby is praised for its glorious sandy beaches, and colorful Victorian houses lining the winding streets and overlooking the turquoise waters of Carmarthen Bay.

Tenby’s rich history can be felt as you wander through its ancient walls and explore its medieval architecture. 

The town’s iconic 13th-century stone walls have stood the test of time and offer panoramic views of the surrounding coastline. 

Delve into the past at Tenby Museum, where you can learn about the town’s maritime heritage and discover artifacts that tell its story.

One of the highlights of Tenby is its breathtaking beaches. With three stunning sandy stretches – North Beach, Castle Beach, and South Beach – visitors can bask in the sun, take refreshing dips in the clear waters, or embark on thrilling water sports adventures. 

Make sure to also visit the Tenby Harbour, where you can enjoy a fishing session, or take a boat trip out to the nearby Caldey Island, home to a Cistercian monastery and beautiful coastal walks.

Merthyr Mawr Warren National Nature Reserve

Merthyr Mawr Sand Dunes, Ogmore, Porthcawl, Wales, UK.

Regarded for its immense natural beauty, the Merthyr Mawr Warren National Nature Reserve is a hidden gem for nature enthusiasts and outdoor adventurers. 

This sprawling nature reserve is particularly famous harboring the highest dune in Wales, known as the Big Dipper, covering an area of 840 acres (the size of 340 international rugby pitches!).

As you explore the park, you’ll also encounter picturesque woodlands, tranquil rivers, and sweeping coastal views that will hypnotize you. 

Merthyr Mawr is also home to a variety of animal species, including rare birds, butterflies, and reptiles. 

Birdwatchers will have the opportunity to spot species like skylarks, stonechats, and peregrine falcons soaring above the dunes. 

Visitors to the Merthyr Mawr Warren National Nature Reserve can embark on exhilarating walks, taking in the breathtaking scenery and discovering hidden corners of this natural wonderland. 

Follow the trails that wind through the dunes and explore the diverse habitats that support a rich array of plant and animal life.

 Don’t forget to visit the iconic Ogmore Castle, located nearby, which provides a glimpse into the area’s historical past.

Great Orme Country Park

The Great Orme Tramway approaching the summit station, Wales, UK.
Photo Credit: Lukasz Pajor/Shutterstock

Tucked away in the beautiful coastal town of Llandudno, Wales, lies the breathtaking Great Orme Country Park. 

The park encompasses a limestone headland that rises 679 feet from the sea, and provides views from Snowdonia and Anglesey, all the way to the Isle of Man, Blackpool, and even the Lake District on a clear day.

Hop on the Great Orme Tramway, a historic cable-hauled tram, for a memorable ride to the summit.

Another top attraction in the park is the resident herd of wild Kashmiri goats, which freely roam the hillside. These charming creatures have become synonymous with the area and are a delight to observe in their natural habitat.

Isle of Anglesey & Beaumaris Castle

Beaumaris Castle, Wales, UK.

Situated off the northwest coast of Wales, the enchanting Isle of Anglesey beckons with its natural beauty and captivating charm. 

This dreamy island is known for offering a perfect blend of stunning landscapes, fascinating heritage, and outdoor adventures.

Along the Isle of Anglesey’s coastline, you’ll find a collection of pristine sandy beaches (Benllech Beach is a must-see), rugged cliffs, and picturesque bays. 

If you want to soak in the island’s rich history, make sure to visit Beaumaris Castle, a UNESCO World Heritage Site renowned for its architectural grandeur.

For outdoor enthusiasts, we recommend a hike along the Anglesey Coastal Path, which circles the entire island, unveiling breathtaking vistas at every turn. 

Food lovers will also be delighted by Anglesey’s culinary delights, with its renowned seafood and farm-to-table produce.

Hay on Wye

Hay on Wye is a town in Wales on the border with England famous for the annual book fair.
Photo Credit: Cornfield/Shutterstock

Nestled on the border between England and Wales, Hay-on-Wye is a small market town that packs a big punch when it comes to charm and character. 

This literary haven has earned the well-deserved title of “Town of Books” due to its impressive number of bookshops and its famous annual Hay Festival, attracting bibliophiles from all over the world.

What makes Hay-on-Wye truly special is its unique atmosphere, where the scent of old books wafts through the narrow streets lined with quirky shops and cozy cafes. 

Stroll through the town’s literary treasures, browsing through shelves stacked high with rare editions, second-hand gems, and literary treasures waiting to be discovered.

While books may be the heart and soul of Hay-on-Wye, the town offers much more to explore. Wander along the banks of the River Wye, and head to Hay Bluff or the nearby Black Mountains, where hiking trails beckon adventurers with their stunning vistas.

Also check out the Hay Castle, an imposing medieval fortress that has been carefully restored and now hosts art exhibitions and cultural events.

Three Cliffs Bay

Three Cliffs Bay, Gower, Wales, Swansea, UK.

Tucked away between towering limestone cliffs and blessed with golden sands that stretch as far as the eye can see, Three Cliffs Bay Beach is one of Wales’s most spectacular beaches

What sets Three Cliffs Bay Beach apart is its unique and dramatic landscape. There are three distinct limestone cliffs that rise majestically from the turquoise waters below, creating a picturesque backdrop that will leave you in awe.

As you explore the beach, you’ll discover enchanting caves and rock formations, perfect for intrepid adventurers to explore. 

Tintern Abbey

Tintern Abbey, Wye Valley, Monmouthshire, Gwent, South East Wales, UK.

Are you a history buff? Then be sure to add Tintern Abbey to your Wales bucket list. Tucked away in the serene tidal River Wye, the abbey stands as a hauntingly beautiful testament to the past. 

This Cistercian monastery was founded in 1131 as a place of spiritual devotion and retreat, and still to the present day it draws visitors from near and far who are captivated by its ethereal charm and rich history. 

What makes Tintern Abbey truly special is its romantic and melancholic atmosphere. 

As you step among the crumbling walls and arches, you can’t help but be transported back in time, imagining the lives of the monks who once called this place home. 

The abbey’s architectural grandeur, with its Gothic arches and majestic windows, is a sight to behold and a photographer’s dream. 

You’ll be enchanted by the play of light filtering through the stained glass windows, casting a soft glow on the stone floors. 

The abbey is also surrounded by lush greenery, with the River Wye flowing gently beside it. A true place of serenity and contemplation!

FAQ

Where is the prettiest place to visit in Wales?

The best and most beautiful places to visit in Wales are:

  • Snowdonia National Park (Eryri National Park)
  • Brecon Beacons National Park
  • Pembrokeshire Coast National Park
  • Conwy Castle
  • Cardiff
  • St Davids
  • Ramsey Island
  • Glamorgan Heritage Coast
  • Caernarfon Castle
  • Wales Coastal Path
  • Portmeirion
  • Pembroke Castle
  • Tenby
  • Merthyr Mawr Warren National Nature Reserve
  • Great Orme Country Park
  • Isle of Anglesey & Beaumaris Castle
  • Hay on Wye
  • Three Cliffs Bay
  • Tintern Abbey

How many days in Wales is enough?

Ideally, allowing at least a week or more would provide a well-rounded experience of the country. This would give you enough time to explore popular destinations such as Snowdonia National Park, Cardiff, Conwy, Pembrokeshire Coast, and the Brecon Beacons.

Which is better to visit North or South Wales?

Both regions offer unique attractions and landscapes that are worth exploring, so it depends on your personal preferences and the kind of experiences you’re seeking.

North Wales is known for its mountain ranges, including Snowdonia National Park, making it the perfect place for outdoor enthusiasts and adventure seekers. North Wales is also rich in history and culture, with medieval castles like Conwy and Caernarfon, as well as picturesque towns like Betws-y-Coed and Llandudno.

South Wales boasts vibrant cities like Cardiff, the capital, which offers a mix of history, modern attractions, and lively nightlife. The region is also known for its stunning coastline, including the Gower Peninsula and the beautiful beaches of Pembrokeshire

To make the most of your trip, you could consider combining both regions, as they offer distinct experiences.

What is the most beautiful city in Wales?

The most beautiful towns in Wales are:

  • Chepstow
  • Cardiff
  • Pembrokeshire
  • Laugharne
  • Llandudno
  • Tenby
  • Caerphilly
  • Hay-On-Wye
  • Caernarfon
  • Portmeirion

What are the main types of tourist attractions in Wales?

Wales is home to a wide array of tourist attractions. These include adventure parks, castles, museums and galleries, and beautiful gardens.

What is a famous sight in Wales?

The top attractions in Wales are:

  • Snowdonia National Park
  • Brecon Beacons National Park
  • Cardiff Castle & National Museum Cardiff
  • Conwy Castle
  • Caernarfon Castle
  • Pembrokeshire Coast National Park
  • Glamorgan Heritage Coast
  • Wales Coastal Path
  • Portmeirion

Is Cardiff, Wales, worth visiting?

Cardiff, the capital city of Wales, is definitely worth visiting. It offers a vibrant blend of history, culture, and modern attractions that will captivate any traveler. The city is known for its impressive landmarks, such as Cardiff Castle, a medieval fortress with stunning Gothic architecture, and the iconic Principality Stadium, home to Welsh rugby.

What are the 2 most popular cities in Wales?

The two most popular cities in Wales are Cardiff, the capital city, and Swansea.

What is the Welsh famous for?

The Welsh are famous for several things that reflect their rich culture, history, and contributions to various fields. These include traditional Welsh music and singing, rugby, which is the most beloved sport in the country, and the Celtic language.

What is the best time to visit Wales?

The best time to visit Wales depends on your preferences and the activities you plan to engage in. Spring (March to May), brings milder weather, blooming flowers, and a sense of renewal, making it an excellent time to witness the countryside come alive with vibrant colors. 

Summer (June to August) is also a great time to visit Wales, as it offers the warmest weather that’s ideal for outdoor adventures, beach visits, and exploring coastal areas.

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