Over the next seven days, we are joining the rest of the nation in celebrating Britain’s Landscapes of Plenty for National Parks Week (27th July- 2nd August).
If you live in Wales, you probably already know that we are blessed with three National Parks, including Snowdonia, Pembrokeshire Coast and the Brecon Beacons. But did you know that together these areas protect 20% of the country’s most precious landscapes, habitats, villages and heritage sites?
To celebrate National Parks Week, we have complied a list of seven places located in Wales’s National Parks where you can enjoy some of the country’s most beautiful views, and we have even recommended some of our favourite places to stay along the way!
- Nedd Fechan River, Pontneddfechan, Brecon Beacons
If you want to escape the hustle and bustle of city life, then why not drive to the heart of the Brecon Beacons, and discover the Sychryd Cascades? Once you’ve explored this breathtaking waterfall, you can even go in search of more by following the Elidir Trail along the River Nedd Fechan, which includes the highest waterfall in South Wales- with a drop of 27 meters!
- Freshwater West, Pembrokeshire
Worried about the Welsh weather ruining your plans? Why not give surfing a go- it won’t matter if it’s raining or not! Freshwater West beach on Pembrokeshire’s coastline has some of the best waves in the whole of Wales and has even been used as a location in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows! Enjoy the breathtaking views of the coastline whilst catching a wave, if you can stand up for long enough that is!
- Zip World, Bethesda, Snowdonia
Do you consider yourself to be a bit of an adrenaline junkie? If so, why not soar through the air at 100 miles per hour on the longest zip wire in Europe? Enjoy panoramic views of the whole of Snowdonia as you zoom over moorland at 500ft! Not for the faint hearted, but definitely worth the rush for the stunning views.
- Portmeirion, Porthmadog, North Wales
If you enjoy a range of outdoor activities including paddle boarding, swimming, woodland and mountain walking, then Portmeirion is the place for you this week. This unique village, hotel and castle is set in its own peninsula overlooking both sea and mountains. The village is a combination of Italian, oriental and Tudor-style architecture in Snowdonia National Park that will simply take your breath away. You may have even caught a glimpse of the village in the 60’s British television series, The Prisoner!
- Mynydd Outdoor Adventure, Brecon Beacons
Do you fancy a challenge this week? Discover your wild side by going gorge walking, and enjoy Wales at its wettest and wildest! Witness the beauty of the countryside up close by climbing high into the hills at Brecon Beacons National Park. Whether you’re jumping from rock to rock, or making your way through the crystal clear mountain streams, gorge walking is a great way to enjoy the very best of nature’s obstacles!
- Bodiwan, Bala, Snowdonia
Looking for the ultimate outdoor adventure? Put on your walking boots, grab your rucksack and explore Snowdonia National Park via multiple walking routes, including one that leads you to Wales’s largest natural lake. After a long day of hiking, why not put your feet up at Bodiwan, a Grade II listed guesthouse offering bed and breakfast. Not only is the guesthouse full of history and has links to Welsh colonies in Patagonia, it is only a few minutes walk away from the park.
- Pembrokeshire Coast Path, Pembrokeshire
Fancy a change of scenery? Why not take a walk between Aberreiddy to Porthgain. After all, it has been ranked by National Geographic as the second best distance walk in the world! Take a step into the area’s local history, including the Blue Lagoon – a slate quarry turned coasteering venue. If you’re lucky, you may even have a chance to meet some of Wales’s friendliest seals!
If you’re passing through Monmouthshire on your way to the Brecon Beacons, make sure that you pop in and say hello to us at Llansantffraed Court. Being just a few miles away from Abergavenny, the hotel is a convenient base for exploring the Eastern side of the Brecon Beacons. A pit stop would not be complete without a nice ice-cold glass of champagne in our hotel grounds that overlook the beautiful Monmouthshire countryside. Our head chef Mike Hendry can even provide you with a selection of picnic treats whilst you take some time out and enjoy the stunning local landscape. If you’re in a rush to go and explore, Mike can alternatively make you a picnic basket ‘to-go’!
So, what are you waiting for? Join in with the National Parks Week celebrations and enjoy some of Wales’s most spectacular breathing spaces. Whether you decide to go gorge walking, surfing, ziplining or hiking through the mountains, there’s plenty of ways for you to enjoy Wales’s ‘landscapes of plenty’.