Snowdonia National Park
Conwy to Portmeirion, Wales
Taking to the road behind the wheel of your Motorhome Hire or Campervan Rental is by far one of the best ways of really seeing and appreciating the UK. There are so many attractions vying for your attention wherever you travel in the country that having your own transport is essential if you want the freedom to get off the Highways and explore all the charming little towns and villages along your way. One of the many scenic routes you can choose from in the UK is this trip through the Snowdonia National Park from Conwy in the north to the must-see bizarre little town of Portmeirion on the southern coast of Wales. As scenic drives go, this one is quite short, just 38 miles, and can easily be done in about an hour if you must; however, there is plenty to see along the way and you may be tempted by some of the available side-excursions along the way, so give yourself enough time to enjoy it all.
Starting at Conwy, you will first want to visit famous Conwy Castle, an impressive example of military architecture dating from the 13th century, and considered by UNESCO to be the finest of its’ kind in Europe. From Conwy you take the A470 road to begin your scenic drive through the beautiful Snowdonia National Park. Your first stop should be Betws-y-Coed, the principal village of the Snowdonia region, and where you can pick up all the tourist info you need about the Park and what there is to see. Snowdonia National Park is an area of outstanding natural beauty, with 9 mountain ranges, steep river gorges, waterfalls and lush valleys, as well as a treasure-trove of history and culture. You will be able to see Stone Age burial chambers, churches, castles, Roman forts and some of the slate quarries which were responsible for the typical Welsh slate-clad villages which you can visit along your route.
At Llanberis you can take a trip up to the top of Mount Snowdon, the highest mountain in England and Wales, by stream train – a great way to enjoy the superlative views from the top; the energetic may prefer to hike to the top...it takes about 5 hours on foot and you can always take the train down if you are exhausted!
There are a few good campsites and caravan parks in the heart of the National Park, so finding a place to stay overnight should be easy.
Portmeirion is a unique little town on the north coast of Wales, at the end of your scenic drive. It looks as though a little slice of Italy, complete with domes, columns, towers, and pastel buildings, has somehow been transported here, and it is a bit surreal coming upon an Italianate town in Wales, however it is well worth a visit.