Part of the United Kingdom but very much a nation of unique and singular appeal, Wales woos with spectacular mountain scenery, a coastline of outstanding natural beauty, and an impressive collection of medieval castles, to name just a few of its compelling visitor attractions.
The country's capital city, Cardiff is the most popular visitor destination in Wales. Must-see attractions include the medieval castle and the National Museum of Wales.
Cardiff's historic heart is occupied by the shell of a late 11th-century Norman keep and the main range, a series of buildings dating back to the 18th and 19th centuries.
The 18th century saw the construction of the opulent and highly decorative Arab Room, located in the Herbert Tower. The ceiling, designed in the Moorish style, is quite dazzling.
Lying on the edge of Snowdonia, this picturesque market town features Pont Fawr, a narrow three arch stone bridge that dates back to 1636. The manor house on the far side of the bank was built in 1492.
One of the most beautiful gardens in the United Kingdom, Bodnant is stocked with flora from around the world.
A superb late 13th-century example of military architecture, Conwy Castle was built on the orders of Edward I. Its scenic location makes it a popular year-round tourist draw.
The largest and liveliest seaside town in Wales, Llandudno has been known as the "Queen of the Welsh Resorts" since the Victorian era.
Medieval Harlech was standing during the Wars of the Roses (1460–68) and the
English Civil War (1642–47). It's one of the finest examples of late 13th- and early 14th-century military architecture in Europe.
In Welsh known as Caernarfon Castle, the investiture of the current Prince of Wales, Prince Charles, took place here in 1969.
Anyone who remembers the hit 1960s television show 'The Prisoner' will recognize Portmeirion as the location of the spy-fiction drama. Today, this seaside attraction, styled as an Italian village, is a big hit with tourists.
This narrow-gauge heritage railway located mainly within Snowdonia National Park is run by the oldest surviving railway company in the world. The passenger terminus is the Porthmadog Harbour railway station.
Designated a national park in 1951, Snowdonia is one of the United Kingdom's most recognized mountainous regions.
The park is named for Snowdon, which is the highest peak in Wales at 1,085 m (3,560 ft).
Completed in 1805, this navigable aqueduct carries the Llangollen Canal across the River Dee. It's the highest canal aqueduct in the world, and on the wish list of every narrow boat skipper in the country.
Verdant valleys and dramatic escarpments characterize much of this outstanding national park, part of which encompasses the Black Mountain range. So pristine is this area that in 2013 it was declared an International Dark Sky Reserve to promote astronomy.
The impressive ruins of this 12th-century abbey attract nearly 70,000 visitors each year.
The scene of a fierce battle between Parliamentary and Royalist forces during the English Civil War, Raglan today sits in peaceful splendor framed by verdant countryside.
Consecrated in 1131, the cathedral stands near the small city of St Davids.
Set within an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, Rhossili Beach is a 6-km (4-mi) curve of golden sand popular with surfers and, in summer, family groups. The remote location has won several environmental awards.
A previous "Best Beach of Britain" winner, Three Cliff Bay has also featured in various television dramas, such is the appeal of its scenic location.
Seasoned hikers can tackle this 1,400-km (870-mi) long-distance footpath, which passes through several nature reserves along the way. The truly adventurous can link up with the Offa's Dyke Path, that roughly follows the Wales-England border, and walk around almost the whole of the country.
A castle, fortress, and grand country mansion rolled into one, this medieval landmark is celebrated for its landscaped estate, grounds that include colorfully embroidered gardens, and a deer park.
This small tidal island squatting off the coast of Anglesey is landmarked by the 19th-century Tŵr Mawr lighthouse. Following the Anglesey Coastal Path is one way of reaching it.
Set overlooking the confluence of the rivers Ystwyth and Rheidol, Aberystwyth serves as a market town and a seaside resort. Its colorful building facades have appeared in numerous travel publications.
The cascading result of the River Mynach tumbling down a steep and narrow ravine, the waterfall is near Devil's Bridge, a series of three arch bridges, one of which is said to have been built by the devil himself.
The 13th-century stonghold is famous for having introduced concentric castle defenses to Britain, and for having the most elaborate water defenses in the land.
At 299 km (186 mi) long, this designated National Trail follows some of the most dramatic and breathtaking coastal scenery in the United Kingdom. The Strumble Head Lighthouse is a local landmark.
Set overlooking the wide expanse of Carmarthen Bay, picture-perfect Tenby is noted for its relaxed and traditional charm and two magnificent beaches. The old town still retains its 13th-century walls.
Located in Pembrokeshire National Park, this the largest and best-preserved neolithic dolmen in Wales. It's dated to around 3,500 BCE. Visit at night for a truly eerie experience.