North Wales is full of tourist attractions, castles, museums and things to do, along with spectacular mountains, valleys and coastline.
To make your stay with us at Plas Dinas as memorable as possible, we have compiled below a list of some of the best attractions to be found in North Wales - all under an hour away from us by car, with some much closer.
This powerful narrow gauge railway begins a spectacular 25 mile scenic journey from beneath the castle walls at Caernarfon. You'll travel under our driveway and then climb 650ft to the foothills of Snowdon, before zigzagging dramatically down the steep hillside to reach Beddgelert, then through the magnificent Aberglaslyn Pass and on to Porthmadog. Dinas station is just a 15 minute walk.
King Edward intended this castle to be a Royal residence and seat of government for North Wales. The castle's symbolic status was emphasized when Edward made sure that his son, the first English Prince of Wales, was born there in 1284. In 1969, the castle gained worldwide fame as the setting for the investiture of HRH Prince Charles as Prince of Wales.
Founded in 1861 primarily to produce school writing slates, today the company produces all nature of craft and garden products. A tour of the works is available which has become a major tourist attraction.
Dinas Dinlle has a spectacular long sandy beach (pebbles at the top) and a small community with a pub, beach shop and café. It’s located on the road to Caernarfon Air World, from where you can take a pleasure flight around the peninsula, or across the mountains and castles of north-west Wales.
Pleasure flights are available for up to three passengers per flight and cover birds-eye views of a variety spectacular of North Wales landmarks. Also located at the airport is "Air World" - formerly RAF Llandwrog, hosting a small museum which portrays the history of aviation in North Wales. A number of aircraft are exhibited, together with displays of various aero engines.
Since 1896 visitors from around the world have travelled on Snowdon Mountain Railway. Trains travel to the Summit of Snowdon, which at 3,560ft (1085m), is the highest mountain in England and Wales, where the surrounding countryside boasts dramatic landscape and scenery. This unique railway is one of the most popular visitor attractions in North Wales. Based on Victorian engineering Snowdon Mountain Railway is the only public rack and pinion railway in the United Kingdom.
Dinorwig Quarry closed in 1969. Today the workshops tell the story of the Welsh slate industry. The workshops and buildings are designed as though quarry men and engineers have just put down their tools and left the courtyard for home, while an array of talks and demonstrations including slate-splitting give you a real insight into quarry life. A row of quarry men’s houses recapture significant periods from the slate industry.
Electric Mountain in Llanberis offers a tour of Dinorwig hydro- electric power station. A bus will transport visitors to the power station itself, descending deep inside ancient Elidir mountain's labyrinth of dark and imposing tunnels, visitors will experience one of man's greatest engineering achievements. You can witness Dinorwig's massive pump/turbines in action and from the viewing gallery an underground film show explains the building and commissioning of the power station.
This area is one of outstanding natural beauty and has no fewer than seven sites adjoining it that are recognised as Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and one National Nature Reserve. The Menai Strait is extremely important as a refuge for many marine animals. Otters can occasionally be seen playing along the shore or in the waters and seals and dolphins use the Menai Strait as a 'short cut' between Liverpool Bay and Caernarfon Bay. Boat trips are available.
The ancestral home of the Marquess of Anglesey, Plas Newydd bears witness to a turbulent history: from noble beginning, triumphant success at Waterloo, bankruptcy at the turn of the 20th century and the revival of the family fortunes in the 1930s. Located on the Menai Straits, with glorious views across Snowdonia, you can stroll through an Australasian arboretum, Italianate summer terrace or follow a woodland path leading to the marine walk along the Straits.
With magnificent views over Snowdonia, the castle has a unique furniture collection and the best private art collection in Wales. It has large gardens and grounds with a formal Victorian walled garden, a dolls museum, extensive Victorian kitchens, railway museum and adventure playground.
A very popular pleasure cruise which includes panoramic views of the Snowdonia Mountain Range and Penmon Lighthouse. On arrival at Puffin Island you have the opportunity to see as many as 12 species of sea birds in their natural habitat - Puffins, Guillemots, Cormorants & Kittiwakes. At the East of the island you’ll see the seal colony, giving ample time for photographs. The island has a number of ruins of medieval monastic buildings, including the tower of a 12th century church.
A unique village set on its own private peninsula on the southern shores of Snowdonia. It was created by Welsh architect Clough Williams-Ellis between 1925 and 1975 to demonstrate how a naturally beautiful place could be developed without spoiling it. Portmeirion is made up of about 50 buildings and surrounded by 70 acres of sub-tropical woodland gardens. On the main driveway is Castell Deudraeth, a Victorian mansion recently restored as a brasserie style restaurant and hotel.
Built for King Edward I between 1283-87, Conwy remains one of the most outstanding achievements of medieval military architecture. The distinctive elongated shape, with its two barbicans, eight massive towers and great bow-shaped hall, was perhaps determined by the narrow rocky outcrop on which the castle stands.
Harlech Castle is one of the great castles Edward I built to enforce his rule over the Welsh. Situated high upon a rocky outcrop, its seaward side was defended by sheer cliffs, while a deep moat protected the other sides. It was built in just seven years (1283-1290). The castle is built to a concentric design with an impressive inner curtain wall with huge round towers on the corners, surrounded by an outer perimeter of much lower walls.
This is one of the most beautiful gardens in the UK, spanning some 80 acres and is situated above the River Conwy on ground looking across the valley towards the Snowdonia range. The upper garden around Bodnant Hall consists of the terraced gardens and informal lawns shaded by trees. The lower portion, known as the "Dell" is formed by the valley of the River Hiraethlyn and contains the Wild Garden.
Board a train from the original slate slabbing mill and ride into an 1846 tunnel, entering through the side of the mountain and journey into the early Victorian past, seeing some spectacular caverns on the way. Visitors descend on Britain's steepest passenger railway, with a gradient of 1:1.8, to make the Deep Mine tour. The museum includes a village and pub.
Great Britain's only remaining cable operated street tramway and one of only three surviving in the world. The line starts at the Victoria Station in Church Walks, Llandudno. The line is in two sections and passengers change cars at the Halfway Station. The line climbs 400 feet in about half-a-mile. It was opened for passengers in 1902. The upper section, opened in 1903, is less steep and climbs 150 feet in about the same distance.
The Welsh Mountain Zoo opened on 18 May 1963 - the realisation of a dream for the Zoo's founder, lifelong wildlife enthusiast and experienced naturalist, Robert Jackson. It now houses a huge array of mammals, birds and reptiles, including a selection of animals in the children’s farm area.