St David’s Day is the feast day of the patron saint of Wales. Falling on 1st March every year (the day of his passing in 569) it’s a great time to celebrate all things Welsh!
Spring is a great time to explore Wales; all the flowers are starting to come out, but the high summer crowds have not arrived. The weather is ideal for walking, biking and getting about, and it’s a time of year when colours look gorgeous as well.
Here are a few must-visit locations to explore the wonder of Wales.
The Gower Peninsula
The Gower Peninsula was the UK’s first place to become an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in 1966. Surrounded by the Atlantic and the Bristol Sea, Gower’s truly spectacular landscape is dotted with castles, prehistoric stones, churches and other reminders of Wales’ rich past.
All these are set against a breathtaking backdrop of beaches, valleys, woodland and stunning clifftop views. It’s a stunning place to explore.
Mumbles is often referred to as the Gateway to Gower. Cosmopolitan yet cosy, and with some great shopping and eateries, Mumbles is a fantastic area to visit with lots to see and do.
There is a lighthouse that was constructed in 1794, a Victorian pier, Oystermouth Castle, and incredible sea views.
This is a glorious seven mile stretch of beach on the Welsh south coast, along the shores of Carmarthen Bay.
Used as a track for motorbike and car racing in the early 1900s, the beach has been described as “the finest natural speedway imaginable,” and it was used as a firing range in the Second World War. The Museum of Speed is open in Pendine village in the summer.
Used as the backdrop for the popular TV series Merlin, and offering free entry on St David’s Day, Caerphilly Castle is one of western Europe’s great medieval fortresses, and the continent’s second biggest castle.
It’s famous for its great hall, gatehouses and ‘leaning’ tower, and is surrounded by extensive artificial lakes. Work on building it began in the 13th century – as part of Gilbert de Clare’s campaign to conquer Glamorgan – and it still offers a more than majestic sight!
This delightful village and seaside resort is on the coast of Barmouth Bay, in Gwynedd and surrounded by the stunning Snowdonia National Park. The area boasts a two mile Blue Flag beach of golden sands and is accessible for all.
At the same time, the popular narrow-gauge Fairbourne Railway links the village with Penrhyn Point in the warmer months, and the Barmouth Ferry leaves from the seaward end of the railway to cross the River Mawddach. There’s plenty to see, and plenty of ways to see it!
The royal town of Caernarfon has been inhabited since pre-Roman times, and is dominated by Edward I’s medieval fortress where Prince Charles had his investiture as Prince of Wales in 1969.
The castle is probably the most famous in Wales, thanks to its commanding presence and sheer scale. There’s everything a visitor could need, with plenty of good places to eat, shop and explore the colorful tale of the town.
There are so many reasons to visit and enjoy the Welsh capital and its line-up of unique attractions, from its quality shops to the blend of modern architecture and historic buildings.
Cardiff Bay has entertainment for everyone. Stroll around Bute Park, take in Cardiff Castle, and visit the Doctor Who Experience. Easy to get to and around, Cardiff really is a city with something for everyone.
Snowdonia National Park
Located on the west coast, Snowdonia National Park covers over 820 miles of diverse landscapes, and is Wales’s biggest national park. It’s also home to the highest mountain to be found in Wales, as well as the biggest natural lake and an array of beautiful villages, such as Betws y Coed and Beddgelert.
This is also a great place to immerse yourself in Welsh history and culture, since over half the population is Welsh-speaking.
From the waterfalls at Ystradfellte to Dylan Thomas’s house at Laugharne, from the Pembrokeshire coastal path to the red stone walls of Powys Castle and the majesty of Tintern Abbey – there’s something new to experience each time you visit.