Planning a visit to Wales? Great choice! While England, Scotland, and Northern Ireland are often visited and placed on bucket lists, Wales sometimes is a a forgotten part of the UK. I had heard that Wales was a beautiful country, but I wouldn't have been able to name a sightseeing spot or area before going there. Thankfully we had time to visit Wales for a couple of days because it really is a lovely place.
Wales may be often unappreciated and overlooked, but it has been in a few movies such as Twin Town, Pride, and Submarine. If you’re interested in history, you’ll like the story of Hedd Wyn, a Welsh poet honored after his death in the first world war. If you get the chance to visit Wales, here are some of the places we would recommend:
Pembrokeshire South Coast
The southern coastline in Wales is beautiful. Green Bridge, The Cauldron, and Stack Rocks are all at the coast and within walking distance of each other. You'll have to drive through some military fields to get there, but a road for public use to the Stack Rocks Car Park is available. You could walk the trail completely around the Pembrokeshire coast if you wanted to as it is just breathtaking. It does get a bit windy, so make sure to stay on the trail and don’t get too close to the edge of the cliffs.
The 17 km long cave system is a must-see when you visit Wales. There are multiple caves to explore and there's also a dinosaur area! It’s a great place for families to enjoy and spend the day. The entrance is up a short hill from the parking area, but there is a tram that runs back and forth if you don’t feel like making the small hike.
St. David's Cathedral
A beautiful cathedral that lies within the smallest city in Wales, and all of the UK. It’s hard to believe St. David’s is a city because you can walk from one end to the other in about 5 minutes. But the grand cathedral entitled this cute area to its city status.
This cute Welsh town is home of the first university in the world to be awarded plastic-free status. If you go to the top of Constitution Hill, you'll be rewarded with a breathtaking view of the area. You can hike to the top or take the funicular train. If you decide to hike, bring a hat on a sunny day! There aren't any shady areas up top and it can get warm quite quickly. Luckily there is a cafe with ice-cold drinks and ice cream at the top!
We only had time to visit the southern end of Snowdonia park. The views were spectacular and the railway cars were cute. There's even a Railway Inn pub in Abergynolwyn that is decorated like a train station. Ask for the “pudding” menu if you’re looking for dessert.
We only spent a couple of days visiting Wales, and can’t wait to go back! It may be the smallest country in the UK, but there are many things to do! Hope this helps you plan your visit to Wales and gives you ideas on things to do there. Last tip: the fish and chips were recommended by many locals so if you stop at one of the coast towns along the way to St. Davids, be sure to try them! We didn’t have time this visit to Wales, but we’ll try them when we go back!
Based on what we did get to see, we would recommend that you stay a little longer in Wales than we did. The 5-Day Discover Wales Small-Group Tour from London is one of the best value tour that we were able to find. The other great value Wales tour that we found is the 5-Day Wales Tour Package from London. We are definitely going to pick one of those two for our next trip.
However, if you are limited on time, there are more short trips that focus on Northern Wales. The best one we found is the 3-Day Snowdonia, North Wales and Chester Tour from London (but you can save nearly $90 per person if you are starting from Manchester). Additionally, if you are just planning on visiting Cardiff, getting the Cardiff Hop-On Hop-Off tour is SUPER CHEAP and totally worth it. What do you think - Is there a place that you liked in Wales more than these 5 spots?
BEST HOTELS IN WALES
Best Luxury Hotel, Experience & Location: Roch Castle Hotel (price varies)
Best Value & Location Hotel: Gwesty Conrah Hotel (around $85 USD per night)
Best Experience & Location VRBO: Apartment in a small coastal village of Tresaith (as low as $46 USD per night)
Cheapest Decent Hostel & Location: YHA Manorbier (from $16 USD per night)
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Jenny & Bradley of EatWanderExplore