Wednesday, 30 August 2017

A weekend In Snowdonia and climbing mount snowdon

After lots of research and splashing out on some new walking boots I recently had the adventure weekend of a lifetime in Snowdonia National Park! 
After enjoying mountains, hiking and spectacular views so much while in New Zealand I simply couldn't believe that similar stunning scenery existed just half a days drive away in Wales. I had to see it for myself. 
This trip goes hand in hand with my recent posts surrounding exploring the UK, this has to now be up there with my favourite places in the world. 



From Surrey to Snowdonia the drive took about six hours and was mostly main roads, the journey was super easy and the arrived at the village of Llanberis not feeling too worse for wear.


I would strongly reccomend this vilage as a location to stay in. There are many guest houses and it is RIGHT next to the mountain and rest of the beautiful national park. There is a bus that runs from close by to Pen Y Pass-our starting location, and many lovely little pubs to fill your belly after a day of walking. Plus how cute is it?


SNOWDON

If you haven't heard of it, Snowdon is the highest peak of England and Wales with breathtaking views and lakes galore. We decided, as the weather was best on the first day, to get straight up that mountain and take it head on. Having done a leg workout the day before and already in pain (what a mistake) I can safely say it was quite the challenge. If your thinking of tackling it yourself bear in mind, the views are weather dependent sometimes. We saw for ourselves how quickly the blaring sun can change to cloud yet luckily for us we reached the top before it clouded over. 

There are six routes to the summit, varying in difficulty. It wasn't at all easy but as someone who doesn't do a huge amount of exercise and has a basic fitness level I managed it without being TOO sore the next day! Mark noticed there were toddlers going faster than him up some of the more challenging inclines, so all in all its doable for most! 

After googling for hours (just to be thorough) we decided the best route would be up the Pyg track and down the Miners. Although the Llanberis route is said to be most popular for tourists we thought we would have better views and a variety of gradient on our chosen paths. 
Both tracks meet for the final incline to the summit, yet the Miners track slopes back down alongside the beautiful lakes of the National Park. Although not scary, the Pyg track does have your scrambling up some of the steeper parts (I was having to use my hands, when i say scramble I mean it) and you will have to watch where your putting your feet. Whereas coming back down the Miners track gives you a nice, reasonably easy, stroll down with amazing views and opportunities to paddle in the crystal blue waters.
 As I mentioned before both these routes start and finish at the Pen Y Pass car park, however if there is no parking spaces, there are other car parks nearby such as the Nant Peris car park we used and a bus service that runs frequently between them. 


  • Clothing: LAYER UP, the weather changes so much and its nippy up the top
  • Busses: Make sure you check out the car parks and bus routes beforehand.
  • Boots: Comfy ones are a MUST anything even slightly too small will hurt your toes no end, especially coming back down! I would advise getting some walking socks too and spending a little more goes a long way, mine were a total dream!
  • Water: Plenty of it, there is a cafe at the top but no toilets on route. Best to go at the car park at the beginning and hang in there till the summit. If anything its an incentive to keep on going!

WHAT ELSE CAN I DO IN WALES?

I hear you ask, well let me tell ya, the possibilities are extensive. 

Zip Lines

Ok so an absolute must when in Snowdonia is check out some of the incredible zip wires. As a bit of a adrenaline lover myself I couldn't of been more excised to go zipping inside some caves. Yet there are so many choices over at Zip World.

Velocity: The longest Zip line in Europe and the fastest in the WORLD, this is a must for any traveler to North Wales. Located at Penrhyn Quarry you won't regret having a go at this one.

Caverns: If you've been to go ape and loved it, this is that times 100. Scaling walls with drops where the bottom can't be seen and zipping back and forth through the caves unaccompanied by a guide really gets your blood pumping. Whats more inside a cave the weather can't get in your way! First complete a training course before being let loose to tackle the course filled with tunnels and tightropes. 

Titan: Currently the largest zip zone in Europe, here you can zip in sitting position in a group of four, perfect for groups friends to experience the stunning scenery together!

There is so much more than this available to get your adrenaline going on the Zip World website and I definitely suggest trying out at least one while your there!


More...

There is so much more to do in this beautiful location including horse riding in the mountains. Despite the pouring rain and Mark breaking his phone trying to take photos, it doesn't get more exhilarating than galloping across this scenery. We booked through Snowdonia Riding Stables, where we were able to have a ride in the arena first to get used to our horses and ride out for a half day in the mountains. Full day rides are available and the staff were so friendly and fun.
If you have even more time than we did, Canyoning and White water rafting are also on the North Wales Menu. You can find out lots more here.
Snowdonia is somewhere I am already thinking about a trip back to and should be on everyones bucket list. Even if climbing a mountain is so far from your idea of fun, there are so many other walks and activities to do around the park I think its worth a visit for anyone!



xo
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