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Snowdonia

Brecon Beacons or Snowdonia: Which Should You Visit?

Rabbie
Posted on 28 May 2024

The Brecon Beacons and Snowdonia are some of the most beautiful places to visit in the UK. But why only choose one, on your next visit? Both national parks are located in Wales, and we’re here to help guide you to which to tour first. From the best things to do in each area, to our recommended tours to see either, or both, led by an expert guide. Get your raincoats at the ready, because we’re taking you on a whistle stop tour of things not to miss in these national parks.

Table of Contents:

  • Top Tips to Choose Between Snowdonia or The Brecon Beacons
  • Ultimate Guide to the Brecon Beacons
  • Snowdonia: All You Need to Know
  • Top Tours for Snowdonia and The Brecon Beacons

3 Top Tips for Choosing Between Snowdonia and The Brecon Beacons

Wales is bursting with things to do for families, friends, and solo travellers alike. When choosing between visiting the Brecon Beacons or Snowdonia there’s a few things to consider:

  1. The Terrain - Both Snowdonia and the Brecon Beacons are mountainous areas, but Snowdonia is known for its dramatic peaks. Whereas the Brecon Beacons have a more varied aesthetic with mountains, rolling hills, waterfalls, and even caves.
  2. Where Else You Want to Visit - Looking to explore more of Wales? The Brecon Beacons is in the south of the country which makes it easier to access other locations, such as the capital city of Cardiff (which is not to be missed if it’s your first time to Wales).
  3. The Culture - Both Snowdonia and the Brecon Beacons are rich in history and culture, but both areas have their own unique advantages. Snowdonia has lots of castles to tour and dives into the history of the slate industry. Whilst Bannau Brycheiniog is perfect for literary lovers and those who adore learning about the Romans.

With so much to offer, we’re not surprised if you still can’t decide between the two!

The Brecon Beacons: All You Need to Know

The Brecon Beacons is one of Wales’ national parks and mountain ranges, home to Pen y Fan which is the highest point in Southern Britain. In recent years, the park has decided to drop the English name and honour their Welsh origins, it is now officially known as Bannau Brycheiniog.

Location: South Wales, United Kingdom
Welsh Language Name: Bannau Brycheiniog (pronounced ‘ban-aye bruch-ay-nee-og’)
Highest Peak: 886m (Pen-y-Fan)
Area Size: 520 square miles
Annual Visitors: Over 3 million people visit the area each year, the population of the area is roughly 33,800

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Niels Oberson (@noberson)

5 Things to do in the Bannau Brycheiniog National Park

  1. Hike - Take on the heights of Pen-y-Fan or the long distance route of the Brecons Way (99 mile path)
  2. Visit Welsh Waterfalls - Wales is home to some of the most beautiful waterfalls in the UK. Take on the Four Falls Trail over 6 miles to get a glimpse of multiple in one day
  3. Visit a Cave - The Brecon Beacons is home to Ogof Ffynnon Ddu - one of the UK’s longest cave systems
  4. Visit the Book Town - Hay-on-Wye is known as the world’s first ‘Booktown’ with lots of second hand bookshops and even hosting an annual literary festival. This is the perfect destination for bookworms and culture vultures
  5. Go Back in Time with a Castle Trip - Bannau Brycheiniog is home to Carreg Cennen Castle as well as the remains of a Roman Fort known as Brecon Gaer

Snowdonia: Essential Things to Know Before You Visit

Snowdonia is Wales’ largest National Park and is home to the tallest mountain in the country, Snowdon. We’ve pulled together the top facts about this beautiful destination to help inspire your next trip to Wales.

Location: North Wales, United Kingdom
Welsh Language Name: Eryri (pronounced ‘e-ruh-ree’)
Highest Peak: 1,085m (Snowdon)
Area Size: 823 square miles
Annual Visitors: Approximately 4.3 million people visit Snowdonia each year, whilst the location population is around 26,000

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Kerry Dawson (@outdawsy)

5 Things to Do in Snowdonia National Park

  1. Hike or Mountaineer - Whether you’re taking on the three peaks challenge, or just want to complete Snowdon - Snowdonia is the perfect area to get outdoors and appreciate the views from up high
  2. Take a Mountain Train - One of the wonderful things about Snowdon is how accessible it is. If you don’t fancy getting your hiking boots out, then take the wonderfully scenic Snowdon Railway all the way to the summit and visitor centre
  3. Visit the National Slate Museum - This area of Wales is well known for its slate - in fact the slate mountains are a UNESCO world heritage site. If you enjoy diving into the history and geography of an area, this wonderful museum is well worth a visit
  4. Stroll Around the Awe-Inspiring Villages - Snowdonia is full of enchanting villages that are just waiting to welcome you. Some of the top destinations in this area include Betws-y-Coed, Beddgelert, and Llanberis
  5. Feel Royal in a Castle - Like much of Wales, Snowdonia is home to many castles including the beautiful Harlech and Dolbadarn Castles 

Travel to Snowdonia and The Brecon Beacons with Rabbie’s

For those who just cannot say no to either destination, not to panic. We’ve the perfect tour of Wales that will mean you can see both Snowdonia and the Brecon Beacons on your visit.

  • Discover Wales - Over 5 days explore the incredible landscape of Wales, covering both Snowdonia and the Brecon Beacons. Not only will you visit Hay-on-Wye in Brecon, but you’ll also get to experience the mountainous area of Snowdonia. 

Our Tours that Visit Snowdonia

  • London to Edinburgh Adventure - The perfect tour if you’re visiting the UK for the first time, or simply if you’re looking to get to know more of the country you call home. Starting in London, by day 2 you’ll be in North Wales taking in the wonderful sights of the Snowdonia National Park. The full tour is 8 days and will see you visit the birthplace of Shakespeare, the Peak and Lake Districts, before finishing your journey in Edinburgh. Three countries in one trip? What’s not to love about that.
  • Snowdonia, North Wales & Chester - Over three days you’ll get to explore sights in Snowdonia including Harlech Castle, the mountains, and the Llanberis Slate Museum. Only have a day to spare? No worries - we have a condensed, one day tour of Snowdonia & Chester.

Our Tours that Visit Bannau Brycheiniog

  • Coasts & Castles of Wales & England - Over 4 days we’ll take you from Bristol through Wales and the Cotswolds to see some of the UK’s most enchanting castles. On your second day we’ll treat you to a scenic drive through Bannau Brycheiniog. 
  • Mountains & Coasts of South Wales - Spanning over 3 days, day 2 sees us venture through Bannau Brycheiniog visiting castles along the way. Whilst bookworms will revel with joy for the third day where we take you to the town of Hay-on-Wye to enjoy not only the scenery but to explore the bookshops at your own leisure.
  • Heart of England, Wales & Yorkshire - Day 2 of this 5-day tour takes you to the heart of the Snowdonia National Park, exploring the slate quarries and the highest peak of Snowdon.

Take in All That the UK Has to Offer with Rabbie’s

We have a wealth of opportunities to see the UK in all its glory, helping you have a seamless visit with a small-group tour. Drive in a comfy mini-coach, led by our expert driver-guides showing you not just the tourist spots but some of the paths less trodden. Ensure you’re signed up to our newsletter and never miss out on knowing our new destinations or tour dates.

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