If you’re looking for a bit of adventure in the UK, there is no better place to start than Wales. Whether you feel more at home in the sea or in the mountains, adventure is around every corner in this beautiful little country. From skydiving and ziplining to coasteering and paddleboarding, here are the 17 best outdoor activities in Wales that you will love!
Outdoor Activities in Wales
1. Go skiing, snowboarding, tobogganing or sno-tubing in Llandudno
Head to Llandudno Sports Centre for hours of fun for all ages! Whether you fancy trying out snowboarding or sno-tubing, you are bound to have a great time here. Seriously, I can vouch for it. I went tobogganing here as a kid on a family holiday to Llandudno and boy, was it a lot of fun! However, if you’re not an adrenaline junkie, why not try your hand at Alpine Adventure minigolf instead? There’s also a bar and kitchen for those that would rather soak up the views with a drink in hand than a ski pole in hand.
2. Skydive over the Gower Peninsula
Skydiving is a lot of fun no matter where you do it but jumping over the Gower definitely provides some pretty epic views. So head to Skydive Swansea for one of the best adventure activities in Wales. You can choose to jump from either 7,000 ft or 12,000 ft, so they are not the highest jumps in the world, but a great starting place for beginners. If you love your first experience tandem skydiving you can even take an accelerated freefall course where you learn to do it yourself!
3. Go rock climbing and abseiling in the Brecon Beacons
The Brecon Beacons were just on my doorstep growing up in Herefordshire and yet they never fail to take my breath away! There are so many great things to do in this national park. But two of the best things to do are rock climbing and abseiling. No matter whether you are a beginner or an expert, there are various different crags, quarries and rocky escarpments for anyone to tackle.
4. Ride the fastest zipline in the world at Zip World
Sure, you may have been on a zip wire or two during your time, but have you ever been on the fastest zip wire in the world/the longest zip wire in Europe? Enter Velocity at Zip World, one of the best adventure activities in Wales! The whole experience lasts around two hours from start to finish. You get to go on two zip wires across the historic and truly breathtaking Penrhyn Quarry, first on the little zipper then experiencing Velocity on the big zipper, reaching speeds of up to 125mph.
5. Go surfing in Glamorgan
There are plenty of surfing spots across the Welsh coastline. But surprisingly, some of the best places to surf in Wales aren’t too far from Cardiff! Head to Llantwit, Southerndown, Ogmore or Porthcawl to catch those waves.
6. Hike Mount Snowdon
Climbing Snowdon should be at the top of anyone’s list of must-do outdoor activities in Wales! I mean it goes without saying but Mount Snowdon is a bloody beauty. There are so many different ways to climb the 1,085-metre peak but it should take you approximately 6-8 hours, depending on where you start from. And if you want to admire the views without the climb, you can always take the Snowdon Mountain Railway to the top instead!
7. Go coasteering in Pembrokeshire
If you’ve never tried your hand at coasteering, it essentially involves sea swimming, low-level climbing, traversing, natural rapid riding and ledge leaps into deep water plunge pools. And without a doubt, the best place to go coasteering in Wales is Pembrokeshire. So pack swimwear and a towel, a pair of trainers to get wet and an old pair of shorts, and get ready to hit the seas!
8. Go dolphin watching at Cardigan Bay
Yep, that’s right, you can spot dolphins in Wales! Head to the West coast for one of the best outdoor activities in Wales. Bottlenose dolphins are aplenty in Cardigan Bay, especially during the summer months where dolphin spotting is a daily spectacle. In fact, Britain’s biggest resident population of dolphins lives in Cardigan Bay. If you’re lucky you might also spot seals, porpoises, orcas, basking sharks and whales.
9. Go paddleboarding in Saundersfoot
Saundersfoot is a popular tourist hotspot, and for good reason! Not only is it located within the UK’s only coastal national park, but it is a gorgeous little village in its own right. It’s also a great spot for paddleboarders thanks to its beautiful beaches, cliffs, estuaries and islands, all populated by wildlife. If you’re not confident enough for paddleboarding, you can also take to the seas by kayak or megaboard!
10. Go mountain biking in Snowdonia
If you don’t fancy hiking Mount Snowdon, why not explore Snowdonia by mountain bike? There are so many great trails to choose from throughout the national park, including the famous Marin Trail. Highly exhilarating with its fair share of big climbs and big descents, the trail is 25km long and takes around 2-4 hours to complete. If you’d prefer a more relaxed cycle, Snowdonia is also home to plenty of peaceful off-piste tracks and scenic forest trails!
11. Go go-karting on the UK’s best track in Betws y Coed
12. Bounce Below in an underground cavern
So Bounce Below is technically indoors. But it is definitely one of the more unique adventure activities in Wales! I had to include it on this list because I don’t think there is anything more fun than spending an hour bouncing and sliding across a series of nets in an underground cavern. After donning a rather fetching hair net and a helmet, the team take you underground into the former slate mine for a briefing, before letting you loose onto the trampolines like a bunch of kids on Christmas morning.
13. Go horse riding in Anglesey
Perhaps one of the most peaceful outdoor activities in Wales, horse riding in Anglesey is not to be missed. Anglesey is an island, located off the mainland’s northwest coast, known for its beautiful beaches and ancient sites. I couldn’t think of many places more picturesque to go horse riding than along one of Anglesey’s beaches.
14. Go Ape at Margam Country Park
Go Ape is a high ropes course where you can climb, swing, scramble and zipline to your heart’s content. If that sounds up your street, step into Margam’s lush, green forest and get kitted up by one of Go Ape‘s ever-so-friendly instructors, ready to tackle the tree-top obstacles. The country park it is set in is nothing short of beautiful too!
15. Go white water rafting in Bala
Bala in North Wales is home to the National White Water Centre, one of the best places to find adventure activities in Wales. The dam-controlled River Tryweryn has high flows ideal for exhilarating white water rafting all year round. Alongside rafting, you can also try your hand at canyoning too!
16. Visit one of Britain’s best beaches
Voted by Trip Advisor users as one of the top four Britain’s Best Beaches for four years running, it’s hard not to love Rhossili. With gorgeous golden sand stretching an impressive three miles, you can wander across the clifftops or head down to the beach below. If you fancy a longer walk, you can even venture out to Worm’s Head snaking out to sea.
17. Go Quarry Karting at Zip World
If go-karting felt a little tame for you, how does quarry karting sound instead? This mountain kart experience is one of the best outdoor activities Wales has to offer! So get kitted up and ready to travel down the twists and turns of the Penrhyn Quarry mountains, alongside the world’s fastest zip line!
So which of these outdoor activities in Wales are you most desperate to try out? Let me know in the comments below!