By Caitlin Hornik
From mountain hikes to beachy coastal walks and everything between, there is something for everyone to enjoy in Wales. Below, we round up some of the top hiking and walking spots for travelers of all abilities to discover.
Snowdonia National Park
Home to Mount Snowdon, the highest peak in England and Wales, Snowdonia National Park offers some of the best hiking opportunities in the country. With 823 square miles, there are dozens of walking and hiking trails to choose from. Carneddau is highly recommended, which includes ascending Pen yr Ole Wen and continuing to Carnedd Dafydd and Carnedd Llywelyn before descending via Cwm Lygwy. Ascending up Devil’s Kitchen is another option, which is accessible for hikers of all abilities. Snowdon South Ridge also offers hikers a few options depending on ability. Whatever path you choose, you’re sure to see unbelievable sights.
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Brecon Beacons National Park
Brecon Beacons is known for Pen Y Fan and Table Mountain, to name a few of their famous peaks. There are different walks and hikes to suit visitors of all abilities. For those looking for gorgeous views without the climb, the Begwns walk is a perfect fit. Adventurous climbers will delight in the strenuous Llanwrthwl horseshoe walk or Brecon Beacons horseshoe ridge walk. To summit southern Britain’s highest mountain, Pen y Fan, you’ll want to try the Cwm Llwch horseshoe walk. This particular hike spans 8 miles and will take approximately 5 hours, so plan accordingly!
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Holyhead Mountain, Anglesey
Those who enjoy coastal walks will be thrilled with this Isle of Anglesey route. Holyhead Mountain is the highest peak in the county of Anglesey. This walk is among the easier of the ones on this list, at 4.5 miles and an 1100-foot ascent with only a bit of moderate terrain to climb. Holyhead Mountain is the highest point in Anglesey. A highlight of this walk includes South Stack Lighthouse, which visitors can climb during the summer months. This walk is a smaller part of the 130-mile long Isle of Anglesey coastal path, which averages about 12 days to complete!
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Llangollen Canal Walk
The Llangollen Canal Walk is a gentle six miles along the canal. This route is suitable for walkers of all abilities. The highlight is the 200-year old Pontcysyllte Aqueduct, a World Heritage Site and the UK’s highest navigable aqueduct. The walk begins at Horseshoe Falls and ends in the picturesque town of Llangollen. There are various bridges along the way, providing beautiful views and photo opportunities!
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St David’s Head Coastal Walk
Located just a few miles from St Davids, Wales’ smallest city, this hike in Pembrokeshire offers stunning coastal views. Highlights of this route include views of Cardigan Bay and Ramsey Island. At the plateau,keep your eyes peeled for dolphins! This moderate 3.8 mile hike will take approximately 75 minutes.
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Dinas Oleu walk, Barmouth
This hike will take you from Barmouth town center up through the Old Town and to the top of the hill known as Dinas Oleu, or Citadel of Light. Along the way, you’ll discover some of the rich history of the area. You’ll even be able to explore the first area of land donated to the National Trust in 1895! Continue on to uncover beautiful views of Mawddach Estuary and Cardigan Bay. This 2-hour hike has moderate terrain, so use discretion when choosing if this is the best option for you.
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The Clwydian Range spans 21 miles and is a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. To gain this distinction, an area has to exhibit landscapes, plants, culture, and more that are deemed an asset to the country of Wales. As of 2011, the Dee Valley is also considered an AONB. Within the range, there are a variety of walking paths to choose from. Those looking for a quick and easy walk can choose from one of many circular paths, including Teithien Corwen, Gronant, or the Caer Drewyn Heritage Trail. Those looking for a grand adventure can try Offa’s Dyke National Trail, a 177-mile, 3-day journey along the English-Welsh border. Of course, there are many trails in between for those looking for a happy medium. Whatever path you choose, the views and landscapes will provide a memorable experience.
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Pembrokeshire, Wales’ first national trail, spans 186 miles between St Dogmaels and Amroth. Whether you’re looking for a mile-long walk or a day-long hike, Pembrokeshire boasts more than 200 walks to choose from. Four of the most famous walks along the Pembrokeshire Coast Path are Cemaes Head (5 miles), Porthgain to Whitesands (10 miles), Stackpole Head (5 miles), and Deer Park to Dale (10 miles). During the summer months, you may be lucky enough to spot dolphins and other wildlife! With beaches, harbours, and much more, you’ll enjoy some of the best coastal views along the Pembrokeshire routes.
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