North Wales is an area of beauty and culture in the UK, with geographic features
This stunning landscape is full of adventure and discovery; visitors can explore the wild mountains and valleys, picturesque coastlines, castles, archaeological sites and museums.
The region has a rich cultural heritage, including one of the oldest living languages in Europe – Welsh – which is still spoken by many locals today.
Famous attractions include Conwy Castle – a World Heritage Site built by Edward I in 1283 – as well as Caernarfon Castle, Bodnant Gardens and Ffestiniog & Welsh Highland Railways.
For those looking for more leisurely pursuits there are boat trips along Llyn Peninsula or beachcombing on Anglesey’s stunning coastline.
For those seeking more urban experiences North Wales has plenty to offer, with bustling market towns like Denbigh and Ruthin offering a vibrant selection of bars, pubs, shops and restaurants for visitors to enjoy.
There’s just so much to do in North Wales written recently, and if you read on you’ll find out about my favourites.
Things To Do In North Wales
1. Great Orme
The magnificent Great Orme is a headland made of limestone that can be found to the north of Llandudno, a charming town on the north coast of Wales.
This one-of-a-kind and stunningly beautiful natural feature emerges from the waters of the Irish Sea and provides visitors with views of the area in all directions.
On the Orme, you’ll find several distinct kinds of rock, such as sandstone, shale, and limestone, all of which were formed over the course of many millions of years.
The region is home to a rich and diverse assortment of flora and fauna, including over a thousand species of plants and more than 300 distinct kinds of animals.
It is a well-known destination for climbers and hikers with many trails that wind their way through the cliffs.
Visitors can also get to the top of the headland by taking a ride on the cable car which travels between Llandudno Bay and the peak of the headland.
Address: Great Orme, Llandudno LL30 2XF Wales
Snowdon, the highest peak in Wales, stands proudly at an elevation of 1,085 metres above sea level.
Located in Snowdonia National Park in Gwynedd it is a popular destination for hikers and nature lovers alike.
This majestic mountain has fascinated visitors since ancient times with it’s geological composition consisting of rocks that were produced by volcanoes during the Ordovician period.
For those looking for a convenient way up, there’s always the Snowdon Mountain Railway taking passengers from Llanberis station.
Those who make it up to the summit will be treated to stunning views across North Wales along a series of ridges around its summit plateau.
Address: Snowdon, Caernarfon LL55 4UL
3. Llangollen Canal
The Llangollen Canal is an iconic navigable waterway crossing the border between England and Wales.
It is composed of parts of the historic Ellesmere Canal and the Llangollen navigable feeder, both of which were joined together to form the Shropshire Union Canals in 1846.
The waterway spans 11 miles (18 km) from Gledrid Bridge near Rhoswiel to Horseshoe Falls, and includes the Pontcysyllte aqueduct over the River Dee.
The canal is a popular destination for recreational boating, as well as walking and cycling along its peaceful towpaths.
Visitors can admire stunning views over the Dee Valley, or visit historical landmarks such as Chirk Castle, Whitehouse Tunnel or Llantisilio Cross.
The area also boasts a plethora of wildlife and outstanding natural beauty, making it a paradise for nature lovers.
Address: Llangollen Canal, North Wales
4. Conwy Castle
Conwy Castle is considered to be among the most impressive and well-preserved medieval castles in Wales.
Built on the River Conwy estuary in the late 13th century, it was constructed by Edward I using sandstone that was quarried from the nearby peninsula.
The layout of the castle, which is rectangular in shape and features four tall defensive towers on each side that is typical of fortifications built during the period.
The cross-wall that divides the castle into an inner and outer ward, which served as protection against invasion from enemy forces, is a striking feature.
Today, it continues to be a popular tourist attraction in Wales, bringing guests from all over the world who come to admire the stunning architecture and learn about the fascinating history of the building.
Address: Conwy Castle, Rose Hill St, Conwy LL32 8AY
5. Welsh Highland Heritage Railway
The Welsh Highland Heritage Railway (WHHR) is a short, but spectacularly beautiful and historically significant, reconstructed heritage railway in Gwynedd, North Wales.
Its main station is located in the quaint harbour town of Porthmadog and stretches across a stunning landscape of mountains, forests, lakes and coastline.
Running between Caernarfon and Porthmadog, the Welsh Highland Railway started out as an amalgamation of a number of narrow gauge railways in North Wales
Since then it has become one of Wales’ most beloved tourist attractions with thousands of people every year taking short train rides.
Along the journey passengers can disembark at various stops to discover hidden treasures such as old chapels and castles while also marvelling at awe-inspiring mountain landscape.
Address: Welsh Highland Railways, Porthmadog LL49 9DY
6. Snowdonia National Park
The stunning Snowdonia National Park in North Wales is widely considered to be one of the most picturesque regions in all of Great Britain.
This incredible national park offers a wide variety of activities that can be enjoyed by visitors of all ages, from trekking through the Welsh countryside to paddling a kayak along the winding rivers.
Visitors will run into people speaking Welsh quite frequently and there are a lot of outdoor festivals that celebrate traditional Welsh culture and music.
Other activities include hill-walking, wildlife watching, mountain biking and riding the Snowdon Mountain Railway to the summit of Mount Snowdon (open from April).
Full of the most beautiful scenery, Snowdonia National Park is a destination that can cater to a vacation filled with relaxation or excitement, for the whole family.
Address: Penrhyndeudraeth, North Wales, LL48 6LF
7. Caernarfon Castle
Caernarfon Castle, a Unesco World Heritage Site, was constructed during the middle ages and is located in the north of Wales.
This magnificent castle is an outstanding illustration of the architecture that was prevalent during the middle ages, and was first constructed during the 13th century by King Edward I of England.
Caernarfon castle sits in an advantageous location, with a view that extends over both the town and the Menai Strait.
During the reign of Edward I, a massive stone structure was constructed in its place of the earlier motte-and-bailey layout that served as the foundation for the building.
The defences of the castle were extensive, both on the inside and the outside and there were multiple towers and lookout points to keep an eye out for potential attackers.
Caernarfon Castle has been linked to many historical figures over the course of its 1,000-year history, including a number of Welsh princes who were held captive there by English kings.
As a consequence of this, it has developed into one of the most well-known historical sites in Wales, and receives visitors from all over the world today.
Address: Caernarfon Castle, Castle Ditch, Caernarfon LL55 2AY
8. Anglesey Sea Zoo
The Anglesey Sea Zoo and marine education centre is a unique attraction located on the beautiful island of Anglesey, off the coast of North Wales.
With over 40 tanks displaying the best of British marine wildlife, it is home to over 150 native species including conger eels, sharks, seahorses, jellyfish and lobsters.
One of the most fascinating displays is the Lobster Hatchery of Wales, where you can watch live baby lobsters being born and learn about their life cycle.
Anglesey Sea Zoo’s mission is not only to be an enjoyable tourist attraction but also to raise awareness about marine wildlife conservation.
Address: Anglesey Sea Zoo, Brynsiencyn, Llanfairpwll LL61 6TQ
9. Conwy Suspension Bridge
The Conwy Suspension Bridge is an iconic Grade I-listed structure, renowned as one of the first road suspension bridges in the world.
Designed by distinguished civil engineer Thomas Telford and built in 1822–1826, it was a marvel of its time and continues to draw admiration from engineers and enthusiasts alike.
Spanning the majestic River Conwy next to Conwy Castle, this bridge stands at 262 feet long with a 6 foot wide walkway for pedestrians.
Constructed from iron chains and wire cables, it replaced an older wooden deck in the late nineteenth century before being further strengthened with wire cables.
The remarkable construction is celebrated as part of local heritage tours and is also popular among adventure seekers looking to traverse its metal arches.
The bridge is is open daily for pedestrians and cyclists giving fantastic views of Conwy Castle, Snowdonia mountains and the Estuary.
Address: Conwy Suspension Bridge, Conwy LL32 8LD
10. Colwyn Bay Beach
Colwyn Bay Beach is a stunning shingle and sandy beach that stretches over three miles along the North Wales coast.
With its crystal blue waters, golden sands, it’s no wonder this beach has become one of Wales’ top coastal destinations to visit.
In recent years, the beach has seen major developments such as the addition of new sandy areas and a state-of-the-art water sports centre.
The purpose built promenade overlooks the beach below, making it perfect for walking and taking in the views.
This sandy beach is ideal for families who want to enjoy fun activities such as swimming, paddling, volleyball or surfing.
Address: Promenade, North Wales, LL29 8ED
11. Llandudno Cable Car
This is an iconic attraction in the Great Orme Country Park, providing visitors with a unique bird’s eye view of the stunning scenery known as the ‘Queen of Welsh Resorts’.
Gliding silently up to 679 feet above sea level over a distance of just over 1 mile, the journey takes approximately 9 minutes, giving you plenty of time to take in the spectacular panoramic views.
The cable cars are brightly painted in an array of colours including red, yellow, orange and light blue and glide between Happy Valley at its base and the summit station.
Once at the summit you can look down on Happy Valley or spot all the action at the nearby Ski, Snowboard and Climbing Centre.
Not to be missed during your visit in North Wales!
Address: Llandudno LL30 2XF
12. National Slate Museum
The National Slate Museum is an amazing trip into the past.
Located in the Victorian workshops nestled at the foot of Elidir mountain, it allows visitors to discover a bygone industry.
Here you can explore the history of slate mining and quarrying by visiting the preserved buildings, seeing demonstrations, or simply wandering around the courtyard as if time has stood still.
From the workshop’s blacksmith forge to its saw mill, visitors can gain a deep understanding about how slate was extracted from the mountainside and shaped into products for use in homes and businesses.
Through interactive displays and hands-on activities, such as slate splitting demos, visitors can get an idea of what it was like to be quarry craftsmen or engineers during the reign of Queen Victoria.
Free to visit, there is also a café that serves a range of hot and cold drinks, cakes and snacks, and a Museum shop on site.
Address: National Slate Museum, Llanberis, Caernarfon LL55 4TY
What North Wales attractions / things to do, are good for kids?
There are many things to do in North Wales with kids year round.
Some of the most popular things are, a ride on the the Snowdon Mountain Railway or Great Orme tramway, spend time on the many beaches and picnic areas, visit GreenWood Family Park and Anglesey Sea Zoo.
What is the most tranquil village in North Wales?
One of a few quaint fishing villages in North Wales, Portmeirion is an enchanting Italianate style village, the perfect place for day trips or weekend breaks.
What is the connection between Lewis Carroll and Llandudno, North Wales?
Llandudno was the holiday destination of the girl who inspired Lewis Carroll and on whom he based Alice in Wonderland.
Why is Sir Clough Williams Ellis famous in North Wales?
Sir Clough Williams Ellis was a pioneer of conservation, architectural design and environmentalism.
He was committed to the area of North Wales where he lived and known as the creator of Portmeirion Village.