Wales

Ancient castles, seaside towns and adventure activities galore!

Wales

Capital City: Cardiff

Wales Key Facts

  • Flag

  • Size

    20, 779 km²


  • Population

    3, 063, 456

  • Wales Location

    North Atlantic

  • Travel Insurance

    For Wales travel insurance, select Europe Region

  • International Calling Codes

    44

  • Cities

    Cardiff
    Swansea
    Newport
    Wrexham

  • Language

    Welsh
    English

  • Religions

    57.6% Christianity
    32.1% Non-religious
    7.6% Not states

  • Currency

    Pound Sterling

    Get current exchange rates from

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  • Driving

    In Wales they drive on the left side of the road

Tourism website: 

visitwales.com

When is the best time to visit?

The best times to visit Wales are the late spring/early summer (April until mid June) and late summer/early autumn (early September until November), as the weather is best and the crowds are minimal.

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Transport Information

Airports (1 international, 1 domestic), bus, highways, trains, ports and harbours, ferries.

World Heritage Sites

  1. Pontcysyllte Aqueduct and Canal, a true masterpiece of engineering and design.
  2. Blaenavon Industrial Landscape, a testament to the importance of South Wales in the iron and coal markets of the 19th century.
  3.  Castles and Town Walls of King Edward in Gwynedd, which are four well-preserved example of the colonialization and defense works from the time of King Edward I (1271-1307).
  • Average Annual Temperature

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    10 degrees

  • Average Annual Rainfall

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    961 mm

Climate Information

Wales has a maritime climate and it is often cloudy, windy and wet. Seasonally speaking, summers are usually warm and winters mild. The winter months (October until January) see the highest amount of rainfall, and there is also the possibility of snow. Summer (June until August) represents the hottest months. 

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Official Holidays

  • January 1 - New Years Day
  • March | April - Good Friday
  • March | April  - Easter Monday
  • May 4 - Early May bank holiday
  • May 25 - Spring bank holiday
  • August 31 - Summer bank holiday
  • December 25 - Christmas Day
  • December 28 (2015) - Boxing Day (substitute day)
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Why Visit Wales?

Wales has been a popular destination for the domestic UK market for years, and slowly the rest of the world is joining. Wales offers beaches, nature, history, and some beautifully sceneries. There are also a lot of festivals and events to attract tourists all year-round.

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Things To Do In Wales

  • Experience the cities of Cardiff and Swansea.
  • Catch a life music act.
  • Walk around the castles in Gwyneed as well as visit other UNESCO World Heritage sites.
  • Hike around Pembroke National Park.
  • Try to speak a few words of Welsh.
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Travel Tips For Wales

  • Wales has a number of heritage railways which offer very nice scenic rides in old, but well-preserved locomotives
  • Wales is famous for its musical heritage and the region has produced some of the UK's biggest acts. Be on the lookout for any performances.
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Welsh Food

While Wales has absorbed a lot of the cooking traditions of England, there are certain traditional aspects to Welsh cuisine. Wales is famous for its sheep farming, and lamb features prominently in traditional dishes such as Cawel, which is a lamb stew with leeks, roast lamb with laver sauce, which is lamb served with a seaweed sauce, and lamb with mint sauce. Welsh rarebit has become an iconic dish and consists of a melted cheese sauce poured over toasted bread. A must try for any visitor is the famous Welsh Laverbread, which is a seaweed and oatmeal bread fried in bacon fat. Seafood is also very popular in Wales and you will find cockles (clams) quite frequently in various preparations. The Welsh are also fond of sweets, and famous desserts of Wales include Welsh cakes, which are griddle scones served with jam, and bara brith, a sweet bread with dried fruit. As everywhere in the UK, you will also find a lot of Indian and Chinese foods on offer.

Wales Travel Safety and Warnings

  • Wales is very safe for travellers, however city centers are best avoided after large sporting events. Travel insurance for Wales is recommended.
  • If you decide to go on nature hikes, beware that the weather is notoriously changeable in Wales, and it is best to take safety precautions before setting off on any longer hikes.
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About Wales

 Next to England and facing Ireland is Wales. Certainly not the first place you would think of when you’re planning an adventure holiday of hiking, surfing, diving, and perhaps visiting some cultural heritage. However, Wales has long been a favourite holiday destination for many British people as it offers superb seaside resort towns, many imposing and stunningly preserved castles, and probably more activities than any other part of the United Kingdom. Get your travel insurance for Wales sorted and go discover the 'land of song’.

Travel Highlights Wales

Cardiff is the capital of Wales and is quickly becoming a hot spot for tourism. It’s not difficult to see why when you get there, as Cardiff is a great city with a hugely diverse offering of attractions. Known as the city of castles, you can explore some wonderfully preserved castles pretty much everywhere. In the city center is Cardiff Castle, which also houses the Welsh regimental museum as well as excavated Roman ruins. The 'Red Castle', or Castell Coch, is another beautiful place you can visit which also offers some spectacular views of the area. It is a reconstruction, but nonetheless a gorgeous fairytale castle.

Cardiff also has some wonderful museums to visit. The National Museum of Cardiff has some excellent exhibits focusing on the history of Wales as well as a very good art collection. However hands down the best museum is probably St Fagans National History Museum. Located in the village of St Fagan, it was built on the ground of St Fagans Castle and is a wonderful open air museum that has absolutely spectacular gardens. This is one of Wales's most popular attractions and really should not be missed.

But it's not all culture and history in Cardiff. You can take a cruise along the Bristol Channel, which is absolutely breathtaking in summer, or enjoy a boat ride in Cardiff Bay followed by watching the sunset in one of the many restaurants there. While you’re in Cardiff, keep an eye out for any musical events as Wales is known for its love of music. There are also many smaller venues where you can still discover new artists.

Swansea is further west along the coast and is another great town to visit. It was the first in the UK to be designated an 'Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty', and the Gower Peninsular that Swansea is located on is truly spectacular. The city itself has lots to offer, from the famous Swansea Castle to Oystermouth Castle and the infamous murals at The Guildhall. You’ll also find a lot of references to the famous poet Dylan Thomas, as this was his birthplace and you can visit the Dylan Thomas Centre.

The Gower Peninsula is home to the UK’s most beautiful beach (Oxwich Bay), as well as some great hidden coves that are fun to explore. Another nice trip is to Mumbles, which is a charming fishing village with its own 12th century castle and a great promenade that offers exceptional views of the area. There are many nice driving routes in the area, so if you are motorised do explore them! Before going on any drive, sort out your travel insurance for Wales.

The north of Wales is less developed than the area around Cardiff and Swansea, but nonetheless offers some great sites for visitors. The amount of well-preserved 12th and 13th century castles in this area is staggering. Most famous are probably the castles around the town of Gwynedd. Many historical railways also operate in this area offering beautiful rides through the countryside on old locomotives. This area is also known for its microbreweries focusing on traditional ales, especially Purple Moose, which is fun to visit.

Just off the coast from Gwynedd is the island of Anglesey. While not a huge tourism destination, it does have some very nice towns as well as the famous Beaumaris Castle, which is one of the largest castles in Wales but remains unfinished. However, the real claim to fame of this region is that it is home to the town with the longest name in Europe, and the second longest one-word place name in the world: Llanfair­pwllgwyngyll­gogery­chwyrn­drobwll­llan­tysilio­gogo­goch

Wales is truly a great destination for families with kids, or for adventure travellers who wish to explore the rugged countryside. All you need to explore this beautiful country is some good rain gear and travel insurance for Wales.

For more information on Wales, visit the Wales Tourism Website.

 

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