Betws-Y-Coed is one of the quaintest small towns that you can visit in north Wales. The local architecture, beauty, and natural image has remained very unchanged since the dawn of time. It is in the heart of Snowdonia National Park which boasts a ton of things you can do from mountain biking to walking to hiking. Its atmospheric feel always has an impact on me when I arrive and I adore its colours in autumn when the deciduous trees leafs change their colour, it truly is one of the most wonderful places to be in at the turn of autumn and winter.
Hills creep straight up from the rivers on the valley floor below adorned with forests and the buzzards and birds of prey soar above in the passes. Rivers cut through the igneous rock and scour channels creating steep drop pools you can jump off into over the summer months, and nature is all around. This village is the flagship of beauty for north Wales and should be in your top three to pitch up at summer. If nothing else, take an awe-inspiring drive through Betws up and out of the Conwy valley and let all those shades of green south your mind! Those who love small welsh town life, will love this and its a true retreat from the modern world, you will love Betws y Coed and its friendly atmosphere.
History of Betws y Coed traces its local roots back to the Stone Age with the local Neolithic Burial Chamber that be found up the mountain from the town and that dates back to around 2000 BC. The local area, being so high in the mountains has remained very true to its nature as the mountain area was hard to invade. The Celts had one of the biggest influences on the area after arriving in the 600s BC.
Betws y Coed is the ideal location for those looking to be right in the heart of the wilderness. Very few small towns around the world are so ideally placed for exploration and adventure. For the same reason artists, writers, and other creatives love to visit the area.
Despite the small population of Betws y Coed, there are still plenty of things to do, places to eat, and places to stay. We have prepared a quick guide to help you know the best of each category.
What To Do
Explore Snowdonia National Park
No visit to Betws y Coed would be complete without spending at least a little time in the 800+ acre national forest that it sits in. Nearby you will find the Swallow Falls, mountain rivers flow down and create one of the loveliest spots in all of North Wales. But don’t limit yourself, with that much space, Snowdonia National Park offers something for every adventurer.
There are plenty of tour guides and tour companies that are locally owned and operated to help give tours of the national park.
The Marin Trail cycle route
If you’re a keen cyclist and want to head out for a ride, Betws y coed is your place. With the famous marin trail based from the village you can choose from various lengths of ride on your mountain bikes. Three have been may upgrades to the tracks over the years and the sign posts, directions and facilities are top class. The larges route is 22km and is a bit of a leg buster, but there are family optional routes as well. The route passes through scenic forests and up into the high hills above Betws and beyond weaving there way through the forest tracks. We love taking a day to head out to these hills and explore our wonderful land scape. Need bike hire? No problem check out Beics betws
Take a walk along the banks of the river Llygwu
Starting out at the foot bridge where the waterfalls lie, you can easily follow the family walk toward the boardwalks following the river up out of Betws Y Coed. The walk takes in some amazing river scenery . The walk takes you on the edge of the river following the banks, underneath the canopy, where the board walks are weaved into the trees, it truly is a beautiful wooden structure that brings the trails access to everyone. If your feeling brave bring your swimming cozy’s and take a dip in the river along the way, these is even a rope swing to take in a big splash if the river levels are high enough!
There are host of other walks also in there are see http://www.mudandroutes.com/snowdonia-walks-from-betws-y-coed/
Conwy Valley Railway Museum and Model Shop
Those who love trains, or even are just curious, will enjoy the Conwy Valley Railway Museum that offers visitors the ability to view a variety of local railway memorabilia. The placement next to the British Rail station is not a coincidence, the small trains that kids can ride at the museum run next to the huge trains, inspiring imagination and providing a unique experience.
St Michaels Church Betws y Coed
Take your chance to visit a 14th century church that happens to be in amazing condition. It is the oldest building in all of Betws y Coed and is right on the banks of the river. While visiting make sure to pay a visit to the graveyard and to take in the history that you are walking amongst.
Shops in Betws y coed.
There are a plethora of outdoor shops in Betws to suit all needs and a host of gift shops and local produce shops selling much of what you would expect as a visitor. For us we love to visit the outdoor stores such as Cotsworld outdoors and their superbly priced rock bottom store at the bottom of the village. There are many other outdoor stores now based at Betws with the likes of Blacks and Field and Trek basing main stores there to meet the demands of the outdoor community. Over all you can pretty much everything you want from Walking, to climbing, to camping to running they cover it all.
Where To Eat
Alpine café shop
This for me is the coolest café in Betws by a country mile!- The Alpine café bar is a little labyrinth of art of nooks and crannies to go and find a spot to pitch down and have a cuppa of a bite. Its normally rammed and has queues extending out of the doors, so if your going to go there get there early. What I really love about the place is that it’s a foundation for charity supporting and protecting Orangutan in the wild. Its described a as café with a conscience. Its is owned by artist Jacha Potgieter who is as passionate about all things Orangutan. His work is displayed all across the gallery come café and the architecture of the place speaks volumes of their flair. Pay it a visit!
Riverside Restaurant at the Riverside Hotel
This lovely local hotel offers a restaurant with amazing views of one of the local rivers. They are highly recommended and have been serving patrons since 2006. They offer quality, local produce with an amazing menu.
Cwmni Cacen Gri -The Welshcake Company
Want to enjoy traditional Welshcake, prepared in a traditional manner? The Cwmni Cacen Gri prepares fresh Welshcakes every day and offers them up to visitors and locals alike. You must stop in for this delight.
Royal Oak Stables Bar
Live music, relaxing atmosphere, a large menu, and ales of all kind are served at Stables Bar. Stables offers a little bit of everything for every visitor.
Where To Stay
The Riverside Hotel
The Riverside Hotel is the same location we mentioned up in the where to eat section. At this lovely hotel you can truly experience local life and what the Snowdonia National Park has to offer. Rooms have wonderful views and are perfect for any kind of stay.
Holiday Cottages North Wales
Holiday cottages are a plenty in the Betws y Coed area. Guest houses can be found here: But you can also perform a Google search to find even more options. The area and atmosphere are perfect for holiday cottages in North Wales.
Part of the reason that Betws y Coed is such a remarkable place is that it is nestled in a perfect location in the national park. However, there is more to it. The cities in the area are a remarkable community and between all of them, you could spend years exploring and still have things to do. Take a holiday to Betws y Coed and you won’t be disappointed.
We hope this article is useful for your stay and make sure to take a look at our other articles online. Our whats on active section will show you all the out door things you can do in north Wales from surfing to mountain walking and our Whats on top adventures section will show our Top outdoor activities to do whilst you are here. If your after the north Wales annual calendar then look under the Whats on calendar section it will show you what events are happening day by day . Need somewhere to stay? check out our Whats on places to stay section, we have it covered from camping to lux hotels! Oh what ever your culinary needs are check out our Whats on eats section, we can show you the best cafes, restaurantes and bars to head to on your stay.. Look forward to seeing you in the next article !
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