Things to Do in Wales: 14 Awesome Attractions & Hidden Gems
Updated On: August 09, 2023
Welsh charm, ancient castles, rugged mountains, and stunning coastlines beckon tourists from around the world to explore Wales’s enchanting landscapes and rich cultural heritage. Nestled in the western part of the United Kingdom, there are endless amazing things to do in Wales for tourists.
To help you get the most out of your Welsh holiday, we’ve delved into the best things to do in Wales, uncovering hidden gems and iconic landmarks that make it a must-visit destination in the United Kingdom.
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Visiting Cardiff is one of the most popular things to do in Wales due to its unique blend of history, culture, and modern attractions. As the capital city, Cardiff offers a diverse range of experiences that cater to various interests.
The city is home to a thriving arts community, with numerous galleries, theatres, and live music venues, making it an attractive destination for art and music lovers. The city’s museums feature an extensive collection of art and historical artefacts.
Moreover, sports enthusiasts can revel in Cardiff’s passion for rugby and football. The iconic Principality Stadium hosts exciting matches and events, adding to the city’s dynamic atmosphere. Attending a live match here can be a memorable experience, offering tourists a taste of the local sporting culture.
Cardiff also offers a fantastic shopping and dining scene, with bustling markets, stylish boutiques, and an array of international cuisine. The Cardiff Bay area, a vibrant waterfront development, provides an ideal setting for leisurely strolls, waterfront dining, and boat rides.
Visiting Cardiff is easily one of the best things to do in Wales. The city’s captivating blend of old and new, along with its warm Welsh hospitality, ensures tourists have a memorable and enriching experience in the capital city.
Visit Conwy Castle
Visiting Conwy Castle is one of the best things to do in Wales due to its remarkable historical significance and awe-inspiring architecture. This medieval fortress, situated in the picturesque town of Conwy, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a masterpiece of military engineering from the 13th century.
For history enthusiasts, visiting Conwy Castle is one of the most interesting things to do in Wales. Built by King Edward I in the late 13th century as part of his “iron ring” of castles to subdue the Welsh, the castle played a crucial role in the country’s tumultuous history.
Beyond its historical significance, Conwy Castle provides breathtaking panoramic views of the surrounding landscape. From its battlements, visitors can gaze upon the estuary of the River Conwy, the majestic Snowdonia mountains, and the quaint town below, offering an unforgettable vista that makes the visit truly rewarding.
The castle’s location within the charming town of Conwy adds to its allure. Visitors can wander through the narrow streets, lined with traditional buildings, quirky shops, and cosy cafes, creating a delightful atmosphere that complements the castle’s medieval charm.
Conwy Castle’s combination of historical significance, stunning architecture, and picturesque surroundings make it one of the best things to do in Wales. This iconic medieval fortress is an enriching and memorable experience for tourists from all walks of life.
Travel to Snowdonia National Park
Visiting Snowdonia National Park is full of breathtaking natural beauty, outdoor adventures, and the allure of conquering the highest peak in Wales. The park’s rugged mountains, rolling hills, shimmering lakes, and cascading waterfalls make it one of the most captivating things to do in Wales.
One of the main draws of Snowdonia National Park is the opportunity to hike or take a train ride to the summit of Mount Snowdon, the highest mountain in Wales. The challenging hikes to the peak, ranging from leisurely walks to more arduous climbs, appeal to hikers of all levels, providing panoramic views from the top.
For those seeking a more relaxed experience, the Snowdon Mountain Railway offers a scenic journey to the summit, showcasing the park’s stunning vistas.
Beyond hiking and mountaineering, Snowdonia offers an array of outdoor activities, making it an adventurer’s playground. Visitors can indulge in rock climbing, mountain biking, kayaking, and even zip-lining amidst the majestic landscapes.
Moreover, Snowdonia’s convenient location and accessibility make it an attractive destination for tourists. It is easily reachable from major cities like Manchester and Liverpool, making it feasible for day trips or longer stays.
Snowdonia National Park’s combination of stunning natural beauty, outdoor adventures, and the allure of reaching the summit of Mount Snowdon makes it one of the best things to do in Wales.
Browse the National Museum Cardiff
Visiting the National Museum Cardiff offers a captivating journey through the country’s art, history, and culture. Situated in the heart of Cardiff, the museum is a treasure trove of exhibits and collections that cater to a wide range of interests and curiosities.
For art enthusiasts, visiting the museum is one of the most fascinating things to do in Wales. The museum’s art galleries showcase an impressive array of works, including pieces by Welsh artists and renowned international artists, spanning various styles and periods.
History lovers will find themselves engrossed in the museum’s archaeological displays and historical artefacts, which shed light on Wales’ past. The museum’s extensive collections include everything from prehistoric artefacts to medieval treasures.
Furthermore, the National Museum Cardiff frequently hosts special exhibitions and events, ensuring there is always something new and exciting to discover. The museum’s dynamic programming keeps visitors coming back for more.
The National Museum Cardiff’s diverse collection, educational appeal, family-friendly atmosphere, and central location make it one of the most interesting things to do in Wales. The museum offers an immersive and enriching experience that leaves a lasting impression on all who visit.
Adventure in Brecon Beacons National Park
Visiting Brecon Beacons National Park is one of the most adventurous things to do in Wales. Its stunning natural beauty, diverse landscapes, and wide range of outdoor activities make it a haven for outdoor enthusiasts.
Hiking and walking opportunities in the park cater to all levels of fitness and experience. The iconic Pen y Fan, the highest peak in southern Britain, presents a challenging but rewarding trek for avid hikers, while less strenuous paths provide enjoyable walks for families and casual explorers.
Brecon Beacons National Park also boasts dark skies, making it an exceptional destination for stargazing and astronomy enthusiasts. Designated as an International Dark Sky Reserve, the park provides a unique opportunity to witness celestial wonders and the Milky Way in all its splendour.
Beyond its natural allure, the park hosts various events and festivals throughout the year, making it an attractive destination for cultural experiences. The Brecon Beacons hosts music festivals, literary events, and local fairs that celebrate Wales’ rich heritage, bringing together locals and tourists alike in a vibrant atmosphere of celebration.
Brecon Beacons National Park’s stunning landscapes, outdoor activities, stargazing opportunities, cultural events, and easy accessibility make it one of the most popular outdoor things to do in Wales.
Check Out Castles, Gardens, & Historic Sites
Visiting castles, gardens, and historic sites are some of the most iconic things to do in Wales for tourists. They offer a fascinating journey into the country’s rich and storied past. Wales is home to a remarkable array of castles, each with its own unique character and historical significance.
Gardens in Wales are renowned for their beauty and diversity. Places like Bodnant Garden, Powis Castle Gardens, and Aberglasney Gardens showcase stunning landscapes, rare plant collections, and vibrant floral displays.
The country’s historic sites provide insights into Wales’ ancient past, offering a glimpse into its cultural heritage and traditions. Tourists can explore the ruins of monasteries, cathedrals, and abbeys, which stand as poignant reminders of Wales’ religious and architectural history.
For many visitors, the appeal of these castles, gardens, and historic sites extends beyond their individual allure. Exploring these attractions enables tourists to trace the intricate tapestry of Wales’ past and understand its impact on the nation’s identity and culture.
Visiting castles, gardens, and historic sites are some of the best things to do in Wales for tourists because it allows them to immerse themselves in the country’s history, culture, and natural beauty. The combination of haunted ancient fortresses, gardens, and historic landmarks creates a diverse and enriching experience.
Walk The Wales Coast Path
Exploring the Wales Coast Path is one of the most scenic things to do in Wales. The path offers a truly unforgettable coastal experience, boasting some of the country’s most breathtaking and diverse landscapes.
Spanning nearly 900 miles along the coastline, the path immerses visitors in Wales’ natural beauty. The path takes tourists along sweeping sea views, rugged cliffs, sandy beaches, and charming coastal towns.
For nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts, the Wales Coast Path is one of the best things to do in Wales. Birdwatchers can spot a variety of seabirds and coastal species, while seal colonies and occasional dolphin sightings add to the allure of the coastal journey.
The path’s accessibility and easy navigation contribute to its popularity. Broken into manageable sections, visitors can walk shorter stretches or embark on a more extended adventure tailored to their preferences and fitness levels. Well-marked signposts and helpful information along the way make it easy for tourists to plan their routes.
Exploring the Wales Coast Path is one of the greatest things to do in Wales because it connects tourists with the country’s natural wonders, cultural heritage, and coastal communities. For outdoor adventures, wildlife encounters, or a relaxing stroll by the sea, the path offers an unforgettable experience.
Visiting Llandudno is one of the most popular things to do in Wales for tourists. It offers a delightful mix of Victorian charm, stunning coastal scenery, and a wide array of attractions and activities. As one of the most beloved seaside resorts in the country, Llandudno has been captivating visitors for generations.
One of Llandudno’s main draws is its beautiful beaches, which offer opportunities for relaxation, sunbathing, and water activities. The North Shore and West Shore beaches are popular spots for families and beachgoers seeking a peaceful retreat by the sea.
Moreover, Llandudno’s cultural and entertainment offerings make it an exciting destination for tourists. The town boasts a lively arts scene, with theatres, galleries, and cultural events that enrich visitors’ experiences.
The town’s central location in North Wales makes it an excellent base for exploring the region’s top attractions. From Llandudno, tourists can easily visit nearby castles, the Snowdonia National Park, the historic town of Conwy, and other scenic spots that showcase Wales’s natural beauty and cultural heritage.
Visiting Llandudno is one of the most enjoyable things to do in Wales. Its combination of Victorian charm, beautiful beaches, cultural attractions, and convenient location make it a destination full of history, culture, and relaxation.
Explore Pembrokeshire Coast National Park
Exploring Pembrokeshire Coast National Park is one of the best things to do in Wales for nature lovers. It is the only coastal national park in the UK, and its coastline stretches for 186 miles. The park treats visitors to dramatic cliffs, sandy beaches, and hidden coves.
Hiking along the rugged cliffs provides breathtaking vistas of the Atlantic Ocean and wildlife encounters, including seabirds, seals, and dolphins. The path is accessible to all levels of walkers, with shorter sections available for those seeking a leisurely stroll and more challenging routes for avid hikers.
For water sports enthusiasts, Pembrokeshire Coast National Park is a haven for activities such as surfing, kayaking, coasteering, and paddleboarding. The diverse coastline, with its sheltered bays and rolling waves, caters to both beginners and experienced thrill-seekers, providing unforgettable adventures in the waters of the Celtic Sea.
Exploring Pembrokeshire Coast National Park is one of the most unforgettable things to do in Wales. The park’s diverse offerings cater to a wide range of interests, making it an idyllic destination for those seeking a memorable and immersive natural experience.
Check out St. Davids
Visiting St. Davids is one of the most historic things to do in Wales. Nestled within the stunning Pembrokeshire Coast National Park, St. Davids is the smallest city in Britain and renowned for its rich religious heritage, as it is the birthplace of Wales’ patron saint, Saint David.
Beyond its religious heritage, St. Davids boasts picturesque streets lined with quaint shops, galleries, and cafes, exuding a tranquil and friendly ambience. The city’s welcoming atmosphere makes it an excellent destination for leisurely strolls, where visitors can explore local artisan crafts and sample traditional Welsh delicacies.
St. Davids’ proximity to the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park makes it a popular tourist destination. The city serves as an ideal base for exploring the park’s rugged coastline, sandy beaches, and breathtaking coastal walks.
For wildlife enthusiasts, St. Davids offers opportunities to observe diverse species in their natural habitat, from seabird colonies to marine life. Boat tours and wildlife excursions allow visitors to get up close with seals, puffins, and other fascinating creatures, enriching the overall experience with nature’s wonders.
Visiting St. Davids is one of the most fascinating things to do in Wales. It encapsulates the essence of a quaint, historic city surrounded by natural beauty and cultural vibrancy. St. Davids offers a unique and enriching experience that leaves a lasting impression on visitors.
See Tintern Abbey
Visiting Tintern Abbey is one of the most popular things to do in Wales for tourists. Situated in the picturesque Wye Valley, Tintern Abbey is a Cistercian monastery dating back to the 12th century. Its dramatic Gothic ruins, adorned with intricate stone carvings and soaring arches, evoke grandeur and mystery.
Surrounded by lush greenery and nestled by the River Wye, the abbey’s ruins offer a serene and contemplative ambience, inviting visitors to wander through the ancient archways and imagine the lives of the Cistercian monks who once inhabited this spiritual sanctuary.
The abbey’s accessibility and location contribute to its popularity among tourists. Located not far from the Welsh-English border, Tintern Abbey is within reach for visitors exploring Wales and the neighbouring counties of England.
Furthermore, the abbey’s visitor centre and informative exhibits provide context and historical insights, enriching the visitor’s experience and enhancing their understanding of Tintern Abbey’s cultural and religious significance.
Visiting Tintern Abbey is one of the best things to do in Wales because it offers a mesmerising journey into the past, where the grandeur of medieval architecture meets the tranquillity of the natural surroundings.
Wander the Big Pit National Coal Museum
Visiting the Big Pit National Coal Museum is one of the most historical things to do in Wales. Situated in Blaenavon, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in South Wales, the museum provides a unique opportunity to explore the world of coal mining, which played a significant role in Wales’ history.
The highlight of the museum is its underground tour, where visitors can descend into the depths of the former coal mine and experience what life was like for miners in the past. Led by knowledgeable ex-miners, the tour offers authentic insights into the challenges and dangers coal miners faced during the industry’s heyday.
Beyond the underground tour, the Big Pit National Coal Museum features engaging exhibitions and interactive displays. The museum showcases the machinery and tools used in mining and the personal stories of miners and their families.
Moreover, the Big Pit National Coal Museum is family-friendly and offers activities for children, making it an excellent educational destination for all ages. The hands-on exhibits and engaging demonstrations captivate young visitors, fostering a deeper understanding of history and heritage.
Visiting the Big Pit National Coal Museum is one of the most interesting things to do in Wales. The underground tour, interactive exhibits, and picturesque setting shed light on Wales’ industrial heritage and the lives of the miners who contributed to the country’s growth and development.
Visiting Swansea is one of the best things to do in Wales. As Wales’ second-largest city, Swansea’s rich history and breathtaking vistas attract visitors from all over the world.
Swansea’s location on the stunning coastline of South Wales makes it an appealing destination for beachgoers and water sports enthusiasts. Swansea Bay and nearby Gower Peninsula boast beautiful sandy beaches, perfect for relaxing, swimming, or surfing.
The Gower Peninsula is renowned for its outstanding natural beauty. It is Britain’s first designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB), offering visitors opportunities to explore breathtaking coastal landscapes and picturesque villages.
Swansea’s maritime history is reflected in attractions like the National Waterfront Museum, which showcases the city’s industrial past and the impact of the sea on its development. Visitors can learn about Swansea’s maritime heritage and explore interactive exhibits that transport them back in time to the city’s bustling port days.
Visiting Swansea is one of the greatest things to do in Wales for tourists due to its vibrant cultural scene, beautiful coastline, and welcoming ambience. Swansea offers a well-rounded and memorable experience that showcases the best of what Wales has to offer.
Explore the St. Fagans National Museum of History
Visiting the St. Fagans National Museum of History is one of the most fascinating things to do in Wales. Situated near Cardiff, the museum is an open-air living history museum, making it a fascinating destination for history enthusiasts and those interested in Welsh culture.
The museum showcases over forty historic buildings from different periods and regions of Wales, which have been carefully reconstructed on the site, providing a vivid and authentic representation of Welsh life throughout the centuries.
The St. Fagans Museum also hosts a range of cultural events, workshops, and festivals throughout the year, adding an extra layer of excitement and enrichment for visitors. From traditional music performances to seasonal celebrations, these events immerse tourists in Welsh traditions.
Additionally, the museum’s beautiful surrounding gardens and parkland provide a pleasant and relaxing environment for leisurely walks and picnics. The lush landscapes enhance the overall experience, offering a serene setting for visitors to unwind and appreciate the natural beauty of Wales.
Visiting the St. Fagans National Museum of History is one of the best things to do in Wales. The opportunity to step into the past, interact with historical interpreters, and explore traditional buildings creates a unique and memorable encounter with Wales’ history and traditions.
There are many Fantastic Things to Do in Wales
Wales offers a captivating array of attractions and experiences, making it a top destination for tourists seeking a unique and enriching adventure. From exploring historic castles to exploring national parks, there are endless great things to do in Wales.
With its diverse attractions, friendly locals, and captivating landscapes, Wales stands as a compelling and truly remarkable destination that leaves tourists with cherished memories and a lasting appreciation for the beauty and history of this enchanting country.
If you’re visiting Wales, make sure to check out our blog Bars in Wales: 9 Great Pubs for Tourists & Locals.