With travel restrictions soon to be lifted and staycations & day trips back on the agenda, now couldn’t be a better time to dream about how you’ll make up for lost time in the great outdoors.
The UK is lucky enough to have a number of stunning National Parks and Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, and they’re great places to appreciate the best of the British countryside.
Snowdonia National Park is one such natural wonder. As the largest National Park in Wales, it’s a beautiful place to while away the day, weekend or week.
At So Cosy, we love nothing more than wrapping up in Merino wool and heading out on a good ramble. That’s why we’ve collaborated with Athena Mellor from Ramble Guides to reveal the best Snowdonia National Park walks to put on your to-do list once lockdown travel restrictions come to an end. But first, we’ll let Athena explain exactly what makes Snowdonia so special:
“Exploring Snowdonia National Park feels in many ways like having been transported to another world; where clouds roll between high peaks and water shimmers in mountain tarns, cotton sways in the breeze on prairies and waves crash into rocky shores… Probably most famous for Mount Snowdon, the highest peak in Wales at 1,085m, Snowdonia National Park actually has over 90 peaks, 100 lakes and 200 miles of coastline.”
Located in an area known as ‘Devil’s Kitchen’, you may not have expected such beauty from Llyn Idwal.
According to Athena, it’s one of the most stunning and serene places in the National Park, and we’re inclined to agree. Llyn Idwal is a small mountain lake or ‘tarn’ that’s a beautiful sight to behold. It even has a small beach to the north, which is the perfect place to rest after a long hike and even indulge in a spot of alfresco dining.
Getting to Llyn Idwal couldn’t be easier. Simply park at the pay and display car park at Ogwen Cottage and stroll for less than a kilometre to reach its sparkling waters. Those looking for a longer route will find the Cwm Idwal walk a real treat.
As the highest mountain in England and Wales, you probably won’t be surprised that several routes ascend Mount Snowdon’s famous summit. The Pyg Track & Miners Track however come highly recommended.
Athena advises starting your hike early and taking the Pyg Track to the summit and the Miners Track back. There’s some magnificent scenery to enjoy on both, including the spectacular Llyn Llydaw and heart-shaped Glaslyn lakes.
This summit walk, like the rest of them, isn’t for the faint-hearted. The 7-mile route takes between 4 and 6 hours to complete. You’ll need all of those hiking essentials to get you there too, so don’t forget to bring along some good walking boots, warm clothing, and plenty of food and water.
If you don’t want to leave civilisation behind completely, then a trip to the quaint village of Llanberis is a good way to go. This mountain village is a popular stop-off for avid hikers too.
Burger joint Pete’s Eats is a great place to enjoy a hearty post-hike meal, whilst Georgio’s Italian ice-cream parlour is a must-visit during the spring and summer months.
Go off the beaten track by exploring the Carneddau mountain range. There you’ll find Dulyn Bothy, a mountain hut in the most impressive surroundings. Marvel at the towering peaks, winding streams and beautiful moorland whilst watching the wild horses and grazing sheep go about their business.
The bothy has enough room to host 10 to 15 people at any one time, and is often used by adventurers as a shelter on those cold nights. If you’re staying at the bothy, take along your own food to cook as well as all the usual camping supplies that make for a comfortable stay.
If you’re travelling to Dulyn Bothy in the summer, take a tent just in case you need to pitch up outside. The bothy is particularly busy during the warmer months.
Whatever Snowdonia hike takes your fancy, the perfect way to finish any wilderness walk is with a nice picnic. Check out our picnic blankets and accessories, and explore nature in style.