Mount Snowdon is the highest mountain in Wales, and a great observation point to enjoy the Snowdonia National Park. It is located in the North of Wales, one of the four nations of the United Kingdom that is famous for its wonderful natural landscapes, and for having more sheep than human inhabitants. If you are looking for a relaxing holiday off the beaten track, this wild land is a real haven of peace and quiet. The beauty of the place is highly coveted for filming locations: the next Guy Ritchie film “Arthur, Knights of the Round Table” is set in the gorgeous lands of Snowdonia!
Get to Llanberis, located at the foot of Mount Snowdon
Llanberis is a key location in Wales as it is the departure point to get to Mount Snowdon. It is a small village with a very tiny city centre, with colourful houses, a lake called Llyn Padarn stretching away, where you can enjoy water sports such as canoe and scuba diving, as well as the ruins of Dolbadarn castle. Llanberis is also known for its slate quarries that you can admire taking Llanberis Lake railway.
Too lazy to hike your way to the top? Take the train!
To get to the top of Snowdon you have two choices, if you don’t feel ready for a day of hiking you can still go to the summit with the Snowdon Mountain Railway, which runs everyday from the 20th March to the first of November. The train looks a bit like a locomotive, it gives an “old-school” experience of the landscape, there is also the “Heritage Steam Experience” in which visitors experience the journey in a real Steam locomotive. From here the views are incredible and you feel to be back in the past. The departure is in Llanberis village. The price varies according to the age, the season of the year and which service you chose, an adult return ticket costs at least 29 GBP (43,2 USD) and a child return ticket costs minimum 20 GBP (29,8 USD). In Winter there is no possibility to go up with the train as the service ends in November. The only way to reach the top is to hike the Mountain with a good equipment because of the snow.
Take the challenge and climb to the top!
I highly recommend to hike the mountain, as it will enable you to see every detail of the landscape, to feel like you’re a part of nature, but also it will give you a good story to tell your friends when you want to impress them!
The hike is doable by any level, although I would not recommend it to families with small children. The top of Snowdon amounts to 1,085 metres (3,560 ft.) and there are different difficulty paths. You can choose between six paths, each path is unique and in any case you will be amazed by the stunning views, try to go for a path of your level of endurance. For amateur hikers, I advise “Pyg trail” which is not too difficult, but challenging as well! In any case you’ll have to get up early and plan to arrive no later than 9.00 am as it takes at least three hours to go up and a bit less to go down.
The view from the summit is truly breathtaking! You will feel like you’re in a fantasy film such as The Lord of the Rings, with an exceptional view above Snowdonia and its lakes. Even when the weather is cloudy, the shadow and light contrasts over the valley will certainly fill you with awe. There is a little café with toilets at the top, allowing you to take a rest or buy something at the gift shop, but I’d advise you to bring your own food, as it is quite expensive.
Go down by the lakes ‘path
You can also go down by the lakes path. Indications are scarce but you will find it if you go around the lakes! As the path is quite steep and slippery, the descent might be more difficult than the climb! The path by the lake is quite long but totally worth it as you will see numerous small lakes and falls, there is a stone path but you can also take your own direction. If you are lucky you can even meet some sheep on your way. The colour of the water is impressive as it looks like asphalt.
Take your backpack and see for yourself!
If you are ready for this adventure Wales is definitely waiting for you! To get to the top of Snowdon you must choose a sunny day or at least a not rainy day; remember that the weather can change in less than one minute there. Get yourself properly equipped, wear comfortable trousers, proper trainers, hiking shoes are even better, a hot jumper and something waterproof. Of course bring the necessary survival kit: water, food, hat, sunglasses, sun cream…yes you can get sunburnt even in Wales! If you are in Snowdonia National Park for several days I recommend to visit Betws-y-Coed and Beddgelert, which are very authentic villages nestled between mountains and falls.