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Last updated : Nov 2009
North Wales
North Wales - TravelPuppy.com
The North has popular resorts like Llandudno and Rhyl, the island of Anglesey and the scenic Snowdonia National Park.

Caernarfon

Facing the Isle of Anglesey across the Menai Strait is Caernarfon, whose 13th-century castle dominate the town. Prince Charles' investiture as Prince of Wales happened here in 1969. The Segontium Roman Fort is also an attraction.

Conwy

With its impressive castle and complete medieval town walls, Conwy is an important historic centre. It offers the tropical Butterfly Jungle and riverbus cruises down the Conwy River. The Royal Cambrian Academy of Art is also in the town, where the Visitor Centre presents a multimedia show about the area. Nearby are the Bodnant Gardens.

Llandudno

Beneath Great Orme Head is one of the country's busiest resorts. It has almost every amenity as well as being within striking distance of the beautiful hinterland, including the Snowdonia National Park. The town's attractions are the Great Orme Mines, the world's largest prehistoric site of its type, the Llandudno Cable Car, climbing to the summit of Great Orme, and the North Wales Theatre, an arts venue.

Rhyl

A town with a 5km or 3-mile promenade and extensive leisure and recreation facilities. It is a good starting point for excursions to St Asaph, a city with the smallest medieval cathedral in Britain. Other attractions in Rhyl include the Sea Life Aquarium, the Rhyl Museum and Art Gallery and the Pavilion Theatre.

Wrexham

Close to the English border, Wrexham is the biggest town in north Wales. Attractions such as the Arts Centre, the nearby Minera Lead Mines and Bersham Ironworks Heritage Centre are the points of interest in an otherwise industrial town. A kilometre to th south lies Erddig, a 17th-century squire's house containing traditional furniture and with many of the outbuildings still in original condition and in working order.

Elsewhere

One of the established tourist areas in the British Isles, north coast beach resorts like Llandudno, Prestatyn and Rhyl are still popular with holidaymakers. The line of resorts continues almost unbroken for miles; Abergele, Colwyn Bay (site of the Welsh Mountain Zoo), Prestatyn and Rhos-on-Sea have good beaches. Further to the east lie Bagillt and Flint, former capital of Flintshire (the modern capital is Mold).

Porthmadog on Tremadog Bay is also resort town - close to here is the village of Portmeirion, site of the 1960s Prisoner TV series and home of Portmeirion china. The world's oldest independent narrow-gauge railway, the Ffestiniog Railway, transports thousands of visitors from Porthmadog to Blaenau Ffestiniog every year, many go to see the Llechwedd Slate Caverns.

West from Porthmadog is the Lleyn Peninsula, with its many beaches, particularly on the south coast, at towns such as Criccieth (home to the Lloyd George Museum), Pwllheli, Abersoch, Aberdaron, and, on the north coast, Nefyn and Clynnog-Fawr. Anglesey is noted for the remarkable Menai Bridge, the Anglesey Sea Zoo at Brynsiencyn, and Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch (commonly called Llanfair PG), which is the UK's longest place name. The town of Beaumaris is home to a castle built by Edward I and the Museum of Childhood Memories.

Back on the mainland is the cathedral and university city of Bangor; its attractions include an enormous doll collection housed in Penrhyn Castle.

Snowdonia National Park
is 2200 sq km or 840 sq miles, containing some of Britain's finest scenery, and 14 peaks over 915m or 3000ft, the highest of which is Mount Snowdon 1085m or 3556ft. The Snowdon Mountain Railway travels from Llanberis to the summit. Attractions in the area include Betws-y-Coed, in the Gwydyr Forest; Bethesda, southeast of Bangor; Bala Lake, which has a narrow-gauge railway; and Beddgelert, site of the Sygun Copper Mine.

To the east of the region is Chirk Castle, a 14th-century Marcher fortress built to guard the frontier. It sits in an area of natural beauty, including the forests of Ceiriog, Dyfnant and Penllyn. Llangollen overlooks the salmon-rich River Dee and is a masterpiece of medieval bridge building. Nearby are the 13th-century Vale Crucis Abbey and the road across the Horseshoe Pass.