Ready to see the best of Wales with this one week itinerary? Featuring the bustling city of Cardiff, the mountains of Snowdonia National Park, unique Wales attractions like Portmeirion, and the wondrous isle of Anglesey, this 7-day Wales itinerary will no doubt blow you away! Keep reading to get inspired and plan your trip to Wales, UK.
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As mentioned in my post on the 10 best places to visit in Wales, this tiny little country was named one of the top destinations to check out in 2020 by the LA Times. How cool is that?
Unfortunately, due to the chaotic pandemonium, ahem *pandemic*, not many people got to experience the greatness of Wales!
On the bright side, the travel industry is perking back up and people are planning trips to new places and new destinations, like Wales!
If you’re one of these people, but need some help figuring out where to visit in Wales and how to spend one week in this awesome country in the UK, I’ve got the perfect itinerary for you.
Keep reading to discover the best places to visit and the top sites with this brilliant 7-day Wales travel guide!
HOW TO SPEND 7 DAYS IN WALES
Use this 7-day Wales itinerary as a guide for planning your trip here! Want to spend loads of time hiking? Plan more days in Snowdonia National Park! Love the seaside and coastal vibes? Spend more time in Pembrokeshire! This itinerary is simply a tool to help you plan your best trip to Wales.
Additionally, I do want to mention this Wales itinerary is heavily focused on driving as the main mode of transportation. While there are trains and buses that go across the country, they can be seriously slow!
With only one week in Wales, I highly recommend renting a car (or using your own if possible) to maximize your time here. Not to mention, opting for a reliable vehicle gives you the best opportunity to go off the beaten track and explore the more hidden gems Wales has to offer!
Personally, I recommend using KAYAK to search for a rental car and find the best price! Use the little widget below to see what comes up for you. (Tip: Put “Cardiff, Wales” as the pick-up / drop-off location!)
Day 1 — Cardiff
Cardiff is the capital of Wales and a great place to fly into!
Alternatively, you can always fly into the bigger cities of London, Bristol, or Birmingham and take a train to Cardiff. (I recommend using the Trainline for tickets!)
One of the best places to visit on any Wales trip, Cardiff is the biggest city in Wales and has a ton to offer in terms of history, fun pubs, bars, eateries, museums, and relaxing parks!
Not to mention, even though Cardiff is the largest city in the country, it’s small enough that you can see a lot of it in a short time!
With just a mere 24 hours or so in Cardiff, you can visit the castle, explore the bay, stop at a couple museums, fill your belly at some delicious restaurants, and browse some local shops for unique trinkets!
For more inspiration, here’s a short list of the best things to do in Cardiff, Wales:
- Visit Cardiff Castle, which is in the heart of the city and dates back to 50 AD. (Psst, you can also book a ghost tour here!)
- Check out Mermaid Quay and all its lovely views, shops, and waterfront eateries.
- Explore the museums — a few great ones include St Fagans National Museum of History, National Museum Cardiff, Techniquest, and the Museum of Cardiff (different from the NMC).
- Walk around Cardiff Bay, visit its piers, and stroll along the boardwalk.
- Relax at some of Cardiff’s green spaces — Roath Park, Bute Park and Victoria Park are nice!
- Do some shopping (or window shopping) at the Riverside Market, City of Arcades, and Cardiff Central Market.
- Visit the Rhondda Heritage Park and the Welsh Mining Experience.
For your one night spent in Cardiff, I recommend using Booking.com to find a suitable place to stay! I find this site shows the best prices (and most offer free cancellation!).
The morning after your night in Cardiff, it’s time to drive to Pembrokeshire!
This next destination on this Wales itinerary is only a couple hours away from Cardiff, giving you ample time to see this loads of Pembrokeshire on day 2 of this 7-day Wales itinerary.
Hey, want to simplify your visit to Cardiff? Go on a guided tour and see the city with a local! Check out these Cardiff tours below… (Psst, if nothing catches your eye, check out more tours here!)
Dying to visit Scotland, too? Take a peek at this post on 15 crazy awesome places to visit in Scotland!
Day 2 — Pembrokeshire Coast National Park
This is one of my favorite places on this 7-day Wales itinerary because Pembrokeshire Coast National Park features everything from gorgeous seaside views and exceptional hikes to charming Welsh villages and stunning beaches!
Not to mention, Pembrokeshire also features some of the more unique attractions in Wales, like the beautiful blue lagoon, the smallest city in the UK (aka St. Davids), and Skomer Island Nature Reserve, where you can find tons of adorable puffins.
Sound like a dream destination in Wales? I sure think so!
Pembrokeshire Coast National Park is perfect for those who love the outdoors, coastal walks, and lots of small, adorable villages with friendly locals.
Here are some of the things I recommend you do in Pembrokeshire, Wales:
- Visit St. Davids, aka the smallest city in the UK.
- Go on a coastal walk — check out these top ten!
- Check out the Blue Lagoon in Abereiddy.
- If it’s summertime, go for a swim in one of its many beautiful beaches!
- Explore the vibrant Victorian city of Tenby.
- Go back in history and visit Neolithic burial chambers, stone circles and Iron Age forts in the Preseli Hills.
- Head out on the water and do some dolphin, whale, and porpoise watching.
These destinations are on the northern part of the Pembrokeshire Coast, as you can see a lot of the southern part on the day you drive from Cardiff to here.
For example, as you drive from Cardiff to St. Davids, which is a 2 hour 45 min drive, you can stop in Tenby, visit Pembroke Castle, go for a walk along the coast, and explore several coastal attractions, like Church Door Cove, Saint Govan’s Church, and the Green Bridge.
Alternatively, if you’re into nature reserves, I recommend booking a boat tour to Skomer Island with the Dale Princess Boat Tours!
Additionally, for day 3-5 of this 7-day Wales itinerary, you’ll be heading up to Snowdonia National Park.
So by positioning yourself in the northern part of Pembrokeshire for your one night here, you make your drive up to North Wales a bit shorter!
Hey, is this your first trip abroad? Don’t forget to check out my post on 11 essentials to pack for a first trip to Europe!
Day 3-5 — Snowdonia National Park
Next up is the iconic Wales destination of Snowdonia National Park!
With towering mountains, thousands of hiking routes, jaw-droppingly beautiful landscapes, adorable Welsh villages, and super fun attractions for families with kids, Snowdonia is the perfect place to spend a couple days when visiting Wales!
Here are my favorite things to do in Snowdonia National Park:
- Go on a hike! This is a must in Snowdonia. If you’re an experienced hiker, I recommend climbing Snowdon, the largest mountain in Wales! (And don’t forget to read my tips on how to not be a sh*tty hiker!)
- Visit Beddgelert and uncover the legend of “Gelert’s Grave.” (It’s so cute but also a bit sad!)
- Explore Portmeirion, which is a strange Italy-inspired village just on the edge of Snowdonia National Park.
- Have a wild adventure at Zip World (great for kids!).
- Check out the countless waterfalls in Snowdonia — a few great ones include Rhaeadr Ewynnol Swallow Falls, Aber Falls, and the fairy pools and waterfalls along Watkin Path (one of my favorite hikes!).
- Head up to the top of Snowdon Peak with the Snowdon Mountain Railway.
- Visit the quaint town of Betws-y-Coed, which is so cute and in the heart of Snowdonia National Park. Lots and lots of local shops here for you support and get unique trinkets at, too!
Betws-y-Coed is great for the first night, as you have easy access to all the finest gems in Snowdonia (book on Booking.com).
For the second night, I recommend either Beddgelert or Llanberis (book on Booking.com), which are closest to the next destination on this 1-week Wales itinerary!
Day 6 — Caernarfon, Anglesey, Conwy & Llangollen
After Snowdonia National Park, it’s time to make your way across the north coast of Wales visiting Caernarfon, Anglesey (if you have the time and energy), Conwy, and then back south towards Llangollen.
If staying in Llanberis for the second night, it’s only a short 20-min drive to Caernarfon (or a 30-min drive from Beddgelert), which is where you’ll find the stunning Caernarfon Castle.
(I recommend getting an early start on the day so you’re not rushed when exploring the castles!)
Caernarfon castle is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and an incredible medieval fortress built in the late 11th century. Not to mention, the castle is used for the investiture (aka the “crowning”) of the Prince of Wales. The current Prince of Wales, aka Prince Charles, was “crowned” here in 1969. Cool, eh?
After visiting Caernarfon Castle, if you’ll either continue across the North Wales Coast to Conwy or make a slight detour to the gorgeous isle of Anglesey (which is one of my favorite places to visit on a Wales trip!).
On Anglesey, I recommend visiting Traeth Llanddwyn Beach and walking out to the lighthouse (Goleudy Tŵr Mawr) where you can visit the Pilot’s Cottages, Goleudy Tŵr Bach (beach), and get stunning views of Wales mainland!
Traeth Llanddwyn is just a 40 minute drive from Caernarfon, making it a great stop on your Wales itinerary. Also, with not many tourists knowing about this place, Traeth Llanddwyn and the lighthouse are a hidden gem you’ll no doubt love!
Next up: Conwy!
From Traeth Llanddwyn, this town is just a 50 minute drive. From Caernarfon, Conwy is 30 minutes away.
While there’s not much to do in the actual town, other than seeing the smallest house in Britain, visiting the castle is what you absolutely must do when here!
Conwy Castle is classed as a World Heritage Site and considered to be one of “the finest examples of late 13th century and early 14th century military architecture in Europe,” according to UNESCO. So it is a must visit when in North Wales!
After you’re done visiting Conwy, hop in the car and jump on the A470 towards the A5 road.
We’re going to the quaint little adorable town of Llangollen! (You’re going to love it.)
This small, yet historic town features everything from cute local shops and castle ruins to mountain views and even a picturesque river running right through its center.
Even cooler, the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct, which is a astonishing 18-arched stone and cast iron bridge for the Llangollen Canal, is just nearby and is one of the more unique sites to stop at on this Wales itinerary!
Within Llangollen, there are also a ton of cute local shops for some Welsh souvenirs and many delicious restaurants where you can get dinner. For those who like to get their hike on, don’t miss out on climbing up to the Castell Dinas Brân, which are castle ruins just outside the town!
As you might have guessed, you’ll be spending the night in Llangollen! Click here to find a great place on Booking.com.
Interested in hopping around Europe visiting some of the best Christmas markets? Check out my 10-day Christmas Market itinerary that visits Switzerland, Germany and Austria (with a stop at Neuschwanstein Castle)!
Day 7 — Brecon Beacons National Park & Cardiff
The last day on this 7-day itinerary for Wales is making your way back down south towards Cardiff with a nice stop at Brecon Beacons National Park!
Driving from Llangollen to Cardiff by going through the center of Brecon Beacons will take around 3 or so hours. (Not including stops within Brecon Beacons, of course.)
Again, I recommend getting up early and jumping on the road as quick as you can to make sure you get the most out of your day!
Brecon Beacons is a beautiful area in Wales. It features gorgeous landscapes filled with mountains, hills, waterfalls, and dense forests that will take your breath away!
Additionally, depending on when you start your day, the small town of Brecon is a charming little spot to grab a quick lunch before heading into the national park.
If you’re into hiking and want to do one last climb before you leave Wales, I highly recommend hiking up Pen y Fan, which is the highest peak in South Wales! (You check out my day hiking essentials here!)
At a steady pace, this hike usually takes between 2-3 hours. (But you won’t even notice the time, as you’ll be too caught up looking at the stunning views!)
Depending on what your schedule look like, such as when your flight out of Wales is or when you have to get back home, you can either spend the night near Brecons Beacons or near Cardiff.
Whew! What a wildly awesome 1-week itinerary for Wales that is, right?! I mean talk about seeing the best of this country!
From exploring the wild coastlines of Pembrokeshire and the towering mountains of Snowdonia to stepping back in history at numerous Wales castles and visiting underrated gems, like Llangollen, this 7-day Wales itinerary has it all.
Tell me, are you planning a trip to Wales in 2021 or 2022? Or do you have any other questions about traveling Wales? Let me know in the comments below! (I basically live in Wales so I’m happy to help you plan your trip here!)
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