Caernarfon.net

The Snowdon Mountain Railway

The Snowdon Mountain Railway

The Snowdonia National Park

The Snowdonia National Park ("Parc Cenedlaethol Eryri" in Welsh) covers 823 square miles of North-West Wales. It is the largest and earliest of the three National Parks of Wales, being established in 1951 (the other two being "The Pembrokeshire Coast" and "The Brecon Beacons", both to the south). The half a million acres of the Park is home to over 26,000 people, spread across picturesque towns and villages including Dolgellau, Betws-y-Coed, Llanberis and Beddgelert. There are seaside towns on the outskirts, including Porthmadog and Barmouth.

Snowdonia or "Eryri" ("Place of the Eagles" in Welsh) is home to the largest mountain in England and Wales, "Snowdon" ("Yr Wyddfa" in Welsh which means "Tumulus" or "Burial Mound"). The mountain is 1,085 metres (3,560 ft) high, although it isn't just one peak, but a series of five, separated by passes. There are many paths to the summit as well as the "Snowdon Mountain Railway", a 4.7 mile rack and pinion railway, opened in 1896, which takes passengers from Llanberis to the top. The summit also boats a new visitor centre, "Hafod Eryri", built in 2006.

Llyn Padarn (Llanberis Lake)

Llyn Padarn (Llanberis Lake)

The rocks that built Snowdonia were formed by volcanoes in the Ordovician period and much of the scenery was later carved out by Glaciation. While many come to walk to the summit of Snowdon, there are many other mountains to try, which are less crowded and without a train. These include "Cader Idris" ("Cadair Idris") and the "Rhinogs" ("Rhinogydd") to the south. While Cader Idris is 600 feet shorter than Snowdon, it's views are no less breathtaking, overlooking Cardigan Bay and towards Ireland. The Rock climbing also varies from novice to experienced. Edmund Hillary prepared for the 1953 ascent of Mount Everest on the cliff faces in Snowdonia.

Accommodation

  • Cartref Guesthouse

    Cartref Guesthouse is a Georgian property situated within the walls of the medieval Caernarfon Castle. The Welsh Highland Railway is a ten minute walk from the property and the town centre is a two minute walk away and features restaurants, shops and a theatre & cinema.

  • Celtic Royal Hotel

    With an Art Deco bar and fine restaurant, The Celtic Royal Hotel features a leisure club and is situated in Caernarfon, just a ten minute walk from the Harbour. The Leisure Club features an indoor heated swimming pool, a fully equipped fitness suite, sauna and steam room.

  • Plas Dinas

    Once the home of Lord Snowdon, Plas Dinas Country House now offers traditional country house accommodation with individually designed rooms. The house is set in fifteen acres of beautiful grounds between the mountains of Snowdonia and the Irish Sea.

  • Ty Dre Town House

    Ty Dre Town House provides a stylish range of accommodation in the centre of Caernarfon, just two minutes walk from Caernarfon Castle. The property is set in an Edwardian building. Each airy room has en-suite bathroom facilities with bath or shower and complementary toiletries.

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