Visitor Attractions in North and Mid Wales
There are many Attractions which are suitable for Children both locally and further away in North and Mid Wales. In addition to the suggestions below also look at "Be Inspired to Visit Bala for Family Fun".
For Children the Local Attractions include:
A ride on the steam Bala Lake Railway with excellent views of Bala Lake and the surronding mountains
- Caerau Uchaf Gardens with adventure playground
- Ewe-phoria Sheepdog Centre
- Play areas in Bala
- The Tryweryn Trail (National White Water Centre): a walk along the river Tryweryn with information boards
- The Leisure Centre with indoor swimming and more
- Visit the Livestock Market on Thursdays
The following Visitor Attractions are accessible from the Bala area and will appeal to Children:
- A visit to the seaside - but don’t forget your bucket and spade!
- Another ride on one of the many railways
- Conwy Valley Railway Museum (Betws-y-Coed) with miniature railway, dodgem cars and self-drive electric tram
- King Arthur's Labyrinth, (Corris, near Machynlleth) walk and boat trip underground with stories of King Arthur
- Llechwedd Slate Caverns (Blaenau Ffestiniog): experience a miner's environment at this award-winning attraction with the Deep Mine Tour and Miners’ Tramway Tour .
- Greenwood Forest Park (Felinheli near Bangor) The ultimate Family Adventure
More information on Visitor Attractions:
In addition to the local Visitor Attractions, there are many other Attractions located in North and Mid Wales, which are easily accessed from the Bala area. These include several UNESCO World Heritage sites - which are places or buildings of outstanding universal value - as well as sites of the National Trust and CADW - the historic environment service of the Welsh Assembly Government.
There are many different types of Visitor Attractions, many are suitable for families and some have a historical and educational interest. The list is endless with:
- Art and Craft
- Children’s attractions (see below)
- Film and TV Locations: Movie Map North Wales
- Historic Sites and Buildings (see below)
- Mines (see below)
- Museums (see below)
- Power Stations (see below)
- Railways including the Snowdon railway and Railway Musuems
The following are just examples of some of the Visitor Attractions, in North and Mid Wales, accessible from the Bala area.
Popular attractions include:
- Portmeirion, Italianate village (near Porthmadog) set on a stunning esturay with extensive gardens - one of the most popular tourist attraction in North Wales
- Electric Mountain Visitors Centre at Dinorwig Power Station, (Llanberis) - a tour of the Dinorwig Power Station which was built inside a mountain
- The Centre for Alternative Technology (CAT) (near Machynlleth) and see “Practical solutions to 21st century problems"
- Llechwedd Slate Caverns (Blaenau Ffestiniog): experience a miner's environment at this award-winning attraction with the Deep Mine Tour and Miners’ Tramway Tour - also Victorian Village and the Miner’s Arms.
- King Arthur's Labyrinth (Corris) An underground storytelling adventure using a disused Welsh slate mine as a dramatic backdrop.
Historic Sites and Buildings include:
- Erddig Country House: Atmospheric house, featuring 485-hectare (1,200-acre) country park and formal walled garden. Life above and below stairs at the second most popular historic house in the UK (National Trust)
- Plas Mawr Elizabethan Town House, (Conwy): Possibly the best preserved Elizabethan townhouse in Great Britain
- Plas Newydd (Llangollen): Home of the Ladies of Llangollen. The romantic story of their elopement and setting up home at Plas Newydd, captured the imagination of Regency Society. Exhibition of their story. Peaceful riverside walk and gardens
- Pontcysyllte Aqueduct and Canal (Llangollen to Chirk) is a UNESCO World Heritage site; starting at the Horeshoe Falls the Llangollen canal crosses two major viaducts at Pontcysyllte and Chirk.
- Ruthin Gaol, experience a 19th C. prison
- The National Library of Wales (Aberystwyth) Full of historic Welsh treasurers and events.
- Llanerchaeron (Lampeter) Will give you an insight into how the Welsh gentry and their stqaff lived 200 years ago.
- Plas yn Rhiw (near Aberdaron) A manor house with ornamental garden and wonderful views.
- Segontium The remains of a Roman fort located on the outskirts of Caernarfon, a World Heritage site .
- Aberconwy House Conwy - Believed to be the oldest town house in Wales dating from the 14th-century.
- Tŷ Mawr Wybrnant Penmachno near Betws y Coed. Traditional stone-built upland 16th-century farmhouse.
- Conwy Suspension Bridge See how trade and travel brought Conwy to life and discover how a husband and wife kept Thomas Telford's bridge open every day of the year, whatever the weather.
- Rhug Chapel Near Corwen. Small private chapel built for Colonel William Salusbury in 1637. Fine seventeenth-century interior fittings.
- Valle Crucis Abbey Near Llangollen. Medieval remains of Cistercian abbey founded in 1201.
- St Cybi's Well Holywell a picturesque site of former 'holy well' dedicated to the sixth-century saint, Cybi.
- Parc Glynllifon (Llandwrog near Caernarfon) Come and enjoy a fun day out for the whole family at Glynllifon’s historic gardens and country park.
- The Judge's Lodging (presteigne) Once called ‘the most commodious and elegant apartments for a judge in all England and Wales’
- Devils' Bridge Waterfalls (Near Aberystwyth) Take a walk along the Nature trail and see the spectacular 300 ft waterfalls and the view of the 3 bridges which span the breathtaking woodland gorge.
Mines and Museums:
- Llechwedd Slate Caverns (Blaenau Ffestiniog): experience a miner's environment at this award-winning attraction with the Deep Mine Tour and Miners’ Tramway Tour also Victorian Village and the Miner’s Arms
- Corris Mine Explorers (Corris) A rare opportunity to explore the abandoned workings of an old Welsh slate mine with one of Wales’ top Mine Explorers. 130 years of mining history captured and awaiting discovery.
- King Arthur's Labyrinth (Corris) A great adventure for the children. Sail with a Dark Age boatman on this Underground Storytelling Adventure. Pass through a waterfall and back across a thousand years into the depths of the Labyrinth.
- Conwy Valley Railway Museum (Betws-y-Coed) with minature railway
- Chwarel Hên, Llanfair Slate Caverns (near Harlech): as well as visiting the slate mine there is a Children's Farm Park and a breathtaking view of Cardigan Bay
- National Slate Museum, (Padarn Country Park, Llanberis): The National Slate Museum offers a day full of enjoyment and education in a dramatically beautiful landscape on the shores of Llyn Padarn. The museum is sited in the Victorian workshops built in the shadow of Elidir mountain, site of the vast Dinorwig quarry.
- Sygun Copper Mine, (Beddgelert) a family attraction situated in the heart of the Snowdonia National Park and is open most of the year. Self-guided tour with audio-visual presentations and multi-lingual interpretation.
- Llanfair Slate Caverns (Near Harlech) The entry to this old but important slate mine is through the main tunnel, under the twin arches of the crypt, and into the lofty cathedral cavern.
- Llywernog Silver-Lead Mine Near Aberystwyth. An authentic 18th century silver mine offering a fascinating insight into life nearly 200 years ago.
- Gwynedd Museum & Art Gallery (Bangor) Learn about the ways of life led by previous generations helps us to place our own experiences in the context of an unfolding story.
- The Lloyd George Museum (Llanystumdwy near Criccieth) Discover the life and times of David Lloyd George in the Museum and Highgate, his boyhood home.
- Quaker Heritage Centre (Dolgellau) Discover the story of the Quaker community that once lived here and of the persecution which forced them to emigrate to Pennsylvania.
Power Stations with Visitor Centres:
- Electric Mountain & Dinorwig Power Station Set against a magnificent backdrop of the towering mountains and the magnificent scenery of Snowdonia, Electric Mountain is First Hydro Company's Visitor centre in Llanberis.
Information compilied by Abercelyn Country Houses and Cottages