When we were in the UK, we had a bit of a conundrum as to where to visit during our small gap between our house sit and our flight back to Mexico. It was between Ireland and Wales, and we ultimately decided to visit Wales.
Part of the choice had to do with logistics, but I’ve always been curious about Wales, and it doesn’t seem like the country gets as much tourism. That’s an automatic draw for me.
I first became interested in Wales after watching The Englishman Who Went Up a Hill But Came Down a Mountain. It’s a worthwhile watch if you haven’t seen it.
Once of the many lovely things about the UK is its wonderful rail system. It makes getting around the country easy and comfortable. Occasionally, a bus is your best bet.
London is probably the starting point for UK exploration for most travelers. Train travel from London to Cardiff takes approximately 2 hours and will give you a chance to explore the landscape as well. By bus, it will take you 50 minutes to an hour longer than by train, but this will be less expensive. My advice would be to check out fares for a few different modes of transportation so you can see which one works best for you.
Whenever possible, book train fare as far in advance as possible for the best savings. Sometimes a last-minute fare will be all right, but advance purchase is almost always better.
We began our Welsh experience here. The city had a great vibe, and the people were extremely friendly like in Scotland. We loved the huge Bute Park where the castle is also located. It was absolutely gorgeous, and a warm, sunny spring day ensured the park was full of people.
Cardiff has many green areas, and it seems like a city of many worlds. You can be standing in front of very old buildings and turn the corner where a very modern structure stands.
Unfortunately, we didn’t have a lot of time in Wales. So after a short stay in Cardiff, it was time to head up to north Wales to see what that area was like. We stayed in a bed & breakfast outside Bangor in the quaint village of Gwynedd.
The innkeeper picked us up at the train station, and we headed to the pier for afternoon tea and to enjoy the sunny weather. I instantly loved this small town. Sitting on the pier and looking across the bay and the surrounding verdant mountains and hills reminded me of home.
While you would see plenty of bilingual signs (English & Welsh) in Cardiff, here in Bangor you encountered it being spoken frequently. It was fun to be in the grocery store hearing the locals chatting away in Welsh.
I definitely want to return to Wales. It’s such a beautiful country. I would probably want to rent a car this time and would definitely make sure to visit Snowdonia as well. I definitely want to spend more than a week here!
Which is your favorite place to visit Wales?