While visiting the United Kingdom, most tourists seem to forget all about Wales. London is the most popular destination among foreigners, followed by other major cities throughout England, Scotland, and Northern Ireland. But people tend to completely bypass Wales, and that’s a real shame.
A land filled with music, history, hospitality, character, and undeniable beauty, Wales is always a rewarding experience for any visitor. One of the best reasons to visit is simply because so few people do, so there’s a chance you’ll have all of that goodness to yourself! Keep reading to find out why Wales should be on your bucket list.
10 The Quaint Towns Are Fairytale-Like
With buildings that have been standing for centuries, much of the United Kingdom resembles a fairytale. But Wales takes the cake as far as being fairytale-like go. The little towns that are scattered throughout the country—many of them totally off the grid—are untouched by tourists and developments. Visit them and you’ll feel like you’ve stepped back into the days of knights and princesses.
One of the most famous (and still not as touristy as other U.K. destinations) is Hay-on-Wye. The market town is on the English border, and as Wales to Wherever points out, it is famous for its book festival.
9 History Buffs Will Love The Castles
If you’re a history buff, then Wales needs to be on your bucket list simply because it’s the castle capital of the United Kingdom. There are about 600 different castles in Wales, so you won’t get through them all, but there’s definitely enough to keep you occupied!
One of the best to visit is Caerphilly Castle, which is the largest in the country. There’s also the impressive Cardiff Castle, and Pembroke Castle, which is one of the oldest in Wales. According to Fly Drive Explore, you’re never far from a castle in Wales, so it’s the ultimate destination for lovers of history.
8 It Is The Land Of Song
Wales is known as the Land of Song for a few reasons. Primarily, the Welsh language has a singsong sound that really needs to be heard to be believed. Not everyone speaks Welsh, but you’re bound to come across the beautiful language sooner or later while you’re in the country. You’ll also notice that signs and other things are written in Welsh.
There’s another reason why Wales is known as the Land of Song and, according to the Culture Trip, that’s because the country also has a strong tradition of singing. You’ll be able to enjoy singing festivals, operas, and choirs during your visit.
7 It’s Less Crowded Than Other U.K. Destinations
This is a major reason to add Wales to your U.K. itinerary, especially if you don’t like crowds. Places like London and even Edinburgh are fantastic, but you have to be prepared to navigate your way through a sea of people, especially if you want to visit the major tourist attractions. As Wales is less popular among travelers, it also tends to be less busy.
There are more touristy locations in Wales, but even these are less crowded than other places in the U.K. If you want peace, quiet, and landmarks all to yourself, go to Wales.
6 It’s Home To Some Beautiful National Parks
Most people go to Wales expecting spectacular scenery, and they don’t leave disappointed. Wales really is home to some of the most phenomenal natural landscapes on the planet. The best place to witness the splendor is to visit one of the three Welsh national parks, which make up 20% of the country. These are Snowdonia, Pembrokeshire Coast, and the Brecon Beacons.
While the Pembrokeshire Coast has been praised as one of the world’s best coastal destinations, we think it’s Snowdonia (home to the highest mountain in Wales) that you should add to your to-do list.
5 To Get Your Adrenaline Fix
Wales can certainly be the perfect place for a low-key, quiet, and relaxing vacation, but only if you want it to be. You can choose to spend your time strolling through the serene villages, or you can get your fix of adrenaline by enjoying some thrilling outdoor activities.
A top destination as far as adventure holidays go, Wales boasts plenty of opportunities for the daring. During your visit, you can do everything from zip-lining through treetops to hiking through caves to mountain biking to surfing.
4 The Beaches Will Make You Think You’re In Paradise
People tend to picture a magical green countryside when they think of Wales, and they’re not wrong. But the country is also home to some of the most beautiful beaches in existence. Rhossili Bay, for example, has been named as one of the world’s best beaches across various different lists.
Relaxing by the beach in Wales will make you feel like you’ve gone to paradise. It’s also the perfect place to enjoy a walk by the beach, as it was the first country in the world to have its own coastal walk.
3 It’s A Foodie’s Dream
In addition to history buffs, music lovers, and adrenaline junkies, foodies should also head to Wales at least once in their lives. It is the ultimate destination for anybody who appreciates good food. You’ll get the chance to sample a number of delicious delicacies, including Glamorgan sausages and rarebit.
Wales also boasts an array of award-winning cheeses, ranging from spicy and strong to creamy. While you’re there, you’ll also need to try some Welsh cakes, which are kind of a cross between a pancake and a scone. Scrumptious!
2 To Visit The Greenest Capital City In Europe
There is plenty of green countryside to admire in Wales, but you don’t have to venture out in the country to see some beautiful greenery (although you definitely should!). The capital city of Cardiff is home to more than two thousand acres of park, making it the greenest capital city in Europe.
Cardiff is an easy city to explore and has plenty to see and do. Check out Cardiff Castle while you’re in town, as well as the breathtaking Cardiff Bay. Only two hours from London, the city is well worth visiting.
1 If Dragons Exist, You’ll Find Them In Wales
We’re not saying dragons exist. But if they do exist, they definitely live in Wales. The country is the unofficial home of dragons (as well as other famous myths and legends, including the figures from Arthurian lore). They even have a dragon on their flag!
Nobody has officially spotted a real dragon yet, but lifelike figures tend to pop up all over the country every now and then. Your best chance of getting a selfie with the mythical creature is to go to Wales and see what you stumble across in the countryside.