Winter escapes are the perfect way to explore and experience Snowdonia and its thrilling trails and historical sites. The solitude of winter offers ample opportunity to absorb this ethereal region’s fairy tale-like hold on the imagination. Not only do you beat the summer crowds, but the winter provides truly breath-taking vistas over the mountainous Snowdonia national park. Although snow is by all means not guaranteed here, there is something about the colour of a winter sunrise and sunset over the beautiful mountain and coastal landscapes. There’s also no better feeling than retiring to a warm fire in a friendly pub for the evening. Forget hibernating this winter with these 5 fantastic reasons to visit Snowdonia.
1. Coastal Dog Walking
Many of north Wales’ coastal regions are closed off to dogs during the busier summer months. If you are taking your dog on holiday with you, many of these restrictions are lifted in the winter season, meaning that dog-friendly coastal walks abound along some magnificent coastal views. From Morfa to Tywyn, the coast can be a captivating day out with plenty of attractions — such as leisure centres — still open in seaside towns and cities.
2. Star Gazing
With longer nights, the glistening night sky is one of winter’s greatest attractions. The whole of Snowdonia has been highlighted as an International Dark Sky Reserve, meaning that — along with only 9 other places in the world — the night air quality is ripe for star gazing because of reduced light pollution. Whether you’re simply looking up from your campsite or heading deeper into the countryside for optimal views, winter is the perfect time for watching the night sky in Snowdonia.
3. Winter Trails
There’s nothing more satisfying that breathing the crisp wintery air and rising above clear blue skies above Snowdon and the surrounding area. Whether you’re wanting a challenging hike through Cwm Idwal, climbing the famed Snowdon by the traditional Llanberis Path or taking a more genteel stroll beside the waterfall and streams of Rhaeadr Ddu and Coed Ganllwyd, winter truly brings Snowdonia to life. As there are plenty of walking trails and hikes for all skill sets at winter, just remember to take extra caution in the colder climate by dressing appropriately, and always check conditions and consult local guides before setting off on more challenging mountainous trails.
4. Going Underground
Snowdonia is beloved for its epic sky-high views, but what about taking it underground? The old Victorian mine at Blaenau Ffestiniog has been transformed into an all-weather, underground rope course with zip lines and tunnels which descend through caverns and slate tunnels. Perfect for winter months with kids in tow.
5. Quiet Portmeirion
Portmeirion, the famed Italianate tourist village featured in The Prisoner, is open throughout winter. We can’t think of a better time to beat the crowds and enjoy a winter in this Welsh wonderland of bright colours and coastal charm. Whether taking a peaceful stroll through the village centre and its shops, a winter picnic by the lighthouse or a woodland walk, Portmeirion has much to recommend it in winter.