North Wales is packed full of great days out for the whole family. Whether you're staying on Anglesey, the Lleyn Peninsula or in Snowdonia you're never far away from a fun-filled day everyone can enjoy.
There are loads of brilliant ways to keep families of all shapes and sizes amused whatever the weather in North Wales. From people-powered rollercoasters to giant underground trampolines, these are some of our favourite days out ‘en famille’.
Below you'll find some of our favourite days out. If you want more details on anything you see or have any questions please do give us a call - we love to chat.
Family-friendly days out in Anglesey include a wonderful sea zoo, fantastic heritage sites and fun all round.
Built in 1775, Llynnon Mill is the only working windmill in Wales. Powered by the winds gusting off the Irish Sea it produces delicious organic stoneground wholemeal flour. It’s fascinating to watch the miller at work, and there’s an interesting exhibition that tells the story of farming and milling on the island. There’s a 2-mile nature trail to follow around the mill, and a tea room and a shop where you can buy the freshly milled flour – why not have a go at making your own Anglesey bread? You can also visit two reconstructed Iron Age roundhouses which give an insight into the Iron Age settlers who lived and farmed at Llynnon 3,000 years ago.
You’ll find the Sea Zoo on the shore of the Menai Strait looking out across the water to Caernarfon Castle and the mountains of Snowdonia. It’s a great weather-proof day out, where friendly biologists will teach you about the scores of species that are native to the North Wales coast. You can watch feeding times, diving displays, fish for your own pearl oyster or even go on a sea safari! Great for helping adventurous little minds to learn about what they find in rock pools. You’ll also find a café, giant octopus bouncy castle, a pirate’s playground, gator swamp boats and Captain Jake’s crazy golf.
It is one of the world’s finest examples of medieval military architecture and it’s right here on Anglesey. Designed by royal architect James of St George, this was the last of King Edward I’s ‘Iron Ring’ of fortresses which he built as part of his conquest across North Wales. Beautifully proportioned and constructed to a concentric wall design, it’s fantastically well preserved. It last saw military action during the English Civil War when it was held by forces loyal to Charles I from 1642 until they surrendered to the Parliamentary Armies four years later. The view from the top of the walls across to the towering mountains of Snowdonia will fire your imagination. Along with the castles of Conwy, Caernarfon and Harlech, Beaumaris is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. A must-see.
The atmospheric Gothic courthouse, which you’ll find opposite Beaumaris Castle in the centre of the town, is open to visitors from April to October. Built in 1614 it has an original hammer-beam roof which must have hung heavy over prisoners as they stood in the dock awaiting their fate. Over at the Victorian gaol, you get a reminder of the harsh treatment of prisoners in the 1800s. Its tread wheel, designed for hard-labour prisoners, is the only one in Britain still in place. A nursery above the women's workroom has a slit in the floor through which mothers could, by pulling a rope, rock their babies' cradles without stopping working. The dimly lit corridors and spartan punishment cells will run a chill down your spine.
This is a great place for children to experience the sights, sounds and smell of a real working farm. Everyone is invited to meet, touch and feed the animals, and in the spring and early summer, you might even be able to bottle-feed the lambs and calves. There are tractor and trailer rides as well as quad bikes and pony rides. You’ll also find a café, gift shop and a delicious chocolate workshop where you can see chocolate being made by the expert chocolatier. The chocolate shop offers a wide selection of handmade chocolates. Just remember to leave the willpower at home, you’re on holiday!
In the centre of the island, near Llangefni, this soft play centre is perfect for letting off a little bit of steam. There’s an action-packed jungle play experience for older children with slides, ball pools, crawl tubes, rope nets, bridges and much, much more. Toddlers can enjoy a small, designated soft play area. There’s a cafe area for parents to relax in whilst keeping an eye on the children.
Exotic butterflies, quizzical meerkats, giant bugs, slithering snakes, chameleons, rabbits, guinea pigs, singing parrots (he’s called Elvis) and pygmy goats. You’ll find all creatures great and small at the Pili Palas. There is also an adventure playground, giant bouncy castle, indoor soft-play area, shop and a café. Hours of family fun.
Zip World, Bounce Below, world-class steam trains and some of the best castles in the UK are in store when you visit the Lleyn and Snowdonia.
If the idea of walking up Snowdon feels a little too much like an uphill struggle then the Snowdon Mountain Railway might just be for you. Between March and November, it runs daily services to the summit of Wales’ highest mountain from Llanberis. You can buy a return journey (you get a 30-minute stopover) or a one-way ticket so you can walk back down the mountain at your own pace.
It’s a journey like no other – an average gradient of 1 in 7 over the five-mile track gives you unique and breath-taking views of the Snowdonia National Park and beyond. A recorded commentary will give you an informative account of the geology, history and mythology of the mountain, and there’s visitor centre and café at the summit where you can enjoy a steaming mug of hot chocolate, tea and cake as well as the magnificent views.
The journey takes around 1 hour each way. Train times vary according to season, check here before you travel.
Excellent indoor climbing facilities including roped climbing walls up to 17m high, multiple low level bouldering areas, a dedicated kids' climbing area and 'CrazyClimb' - a series of wacky climbing challenges. Also features a new 10m 'FreeFall' activity. Suitable for ages 3+, up to and including experienced climbers. Hot meals and snacks served at the on-site Beacon Café. Open seven days a week.
Bounce Below is a sister attraction to Zip World and you’ll find it at Zip World Titan in Blaenau Ffestiniog. It’s a unique underground playground set within a historic disused slate cavern which is just about twice the size of St Paul’s Cathedral.
Your journey to the centre of the earth (well, actually just 100ft underground) starts with a short train ride which will take you down to the belly of the cavern. Once you’re off, get ready to bounce on what will almost certainly be the biggest trampoline nets you have ever seen.
The nets are strung at different levels within two vast chambers, linked together by walkways and a succession of tubular slides. The caverns are lit by an LED light show; expect much-delighted squealing as you bounce around this crazy rainbow coloured adventure.
You need to be aged 7 or over to take part, and all bouncers must wear a jumpsuit and helmet which are provided for you.
The mighty colossus of Caernarfon Castle is the biggest of Edward I’s fortresses in Wales. It was designed not just as a military stronghold, but as a seat of government and a royal palace. It’s where King Edward and his family lived when they visited Wales.
Caernarfon Castle still packs a powerful punch. It’s a brute of a fortress and its tall, imposing walls dominate the streets below. It would have been like an ever-watching eye over the medieval townsfolk. You certainly wouldn’t have wanted to pick a fight with it.
Its banded walls and polygonal towers echo the architecture of Constantinople, which Edward had visited on Crusade. It’s fantastically well preserved, and you can still visit many rooms, towers and passageways which wind their way through the castle.
Look out for the imperial eagles on the top of the Eagle Tower: this is where tradition says that Edward’s wife Eleanor gave birth, in 1284, to the future Edward II. Edward declared that his son was the first Prince of Wales. It’s a tradition that the British monarchy still carries to this day – in 1969 the investiture of the current Prince of Wales, HRH Prince Charles, took place at Caernarfon Castle. Maybe one day it will see the investiture of Princes William and George, too.
You’ll find frequently changing exhibitions at the castle, as well as the Regimental Museum of the Royal Welsh Fusiliers. Opening times vary according to season, check here before you visit.
Conwy Castle is a fantastically well-preserved medieval fortress which, along with the castles of Beaumaris, Caernarfon and Harlech, is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It’s easy to see why.
Built on the orders of King Edward I, it’s one of the finest examples of 13th-century military architecture in Europe. It is enormously impressive and formidable. Hard to believe it was completed in just six years.
Edward built Conwy as part of his fearsome ‘iron ring’ of fortresses which were designed to help him crush resistance to his conquest of Wales. It was designed to convey some powerful messages – strength, power, permanence and absolute dominion. Those messages still hold firm today. It’s hard not to feel just a little bit awe-struck by the castle’s soaring curtain walls and huge stone towers as you approach it.
The views from the battlements, across mountain and sea, are breath-taking. It’s a place to allow your imagination to enjoy a little wander. Maybe you’ll indulge in a little make-believe sword fighting or dragon slaying, or imagine cooking up a feast fit for a king in the medieval kitchens. Opening times vary according to season, check website for details.
Set on a commanding headland overlooking Tremadog Bay, Criccieth Castle's history is deeply entwined in the medieval conflict between Wales and England. Built by Llywelyn the Great around 1230 it was heavily modified when it was captured by King Edward I in the late 13th century. The castle was used variously as a fortress and then as a prison until 1404 when, with the help of a French Naval blockade, Owain Glyn Dŵr – the last native Welshman to hold the title ‘Prince of Wales’ – recaptured it from the English and burned it to the ground. You can still see evidence of the scorching today.
There’s a visitor centre and bookshop where you can learn more about the castle’s turbulent past, and you can enjoy a walk around the castle walls, breathe in the history and atmosphere of the place and imagine the many scenes that have played out right where you stand. The far-reaching views into the wilds of the Irish Sea add to the captivating atmosphere.
Glasfryn Parc is a brilliant day out for all the family, with a brilliant range of indoor and outdoor activities. Activities on offer include cable wakeboarding, go-karting (junior and senior tracks), quad bike treks, archery, skating, ten-pin bowling, soft play centre, kayaking, SUP, clay pigeon shooting, archery, dining, and there's even an award winning farm shop too! All instruction equipment is provided for all activities. Parking and entry are free, activities are priced individually. Glasfryn is open from 9am every day fo the year, apart from Christmas day.
This family-friendly adventure park features the world’s only people-powered roller coaster, den building, mini tractor rides, a barefoot trail and forest theatre. All the rides and activities are designed to have minimal environmental impact and whilst generating maximum fun!
Children big and small can test their skills and coordination with the Crocodile Maze, the WildWeb and longbow archery. Based on the edge of the Snowdonia National Park it regularly gets voted as the best family friendly attraction in North Wales.
Check the Greenwood Forest Park website for the What’s On calendar as well as information on opening times and prices.
The delightful narrow-gauge Llanberis steam train will take you on a five-mile journey along the edge of Lake Padarn, right in the heart of Snowdonia. It’s a wonderful way to enjoy the stunning landscapes of the region without breaking too much of a sweat, and a great activity for wet-weather days, too.
Your journey will take you past the 12th-century Dolbadarn Castle, across what is possibly Britain’s shortest river and past Llanberis’s twin lakes. From Llanberis the train runs non-stop through the Padarn Country Park to Penllyn and on to Cei Llydan, a beautifully tranquil place which is ideal for a lakeside picnic. At Gilfach Ddu you can get off to visit the National Slate Museum.
There are themed rides throughout the year including Santa trains, Halloween trips and Easter Egg Hunts.
The five-mile return trip takes around one hour, and the service varies according to the season. Check the website for details.
At Llechwedd Slate Caverns you get to experience life as it was for a Victorian mining family. Tours start with a ride on the UK’s steepest cable railway which will take you 100s of feet underground to explore the old mine workings. On your way, you’ll hear tales of the miners’ family life – children as young as 12 would work down in these dark caverns. They helped make North Wales the slate capital of the world in the 19th century.
Make sure you’re wearing stout footwear as after descending into the mine the tour underground is around half a mile long and includes over 100 steps. Once you’ve enjoyed your underground adventure you can visit the Llechwedd Slate Workshop and see craftsmen splitting slate and making a range of slate goods – from table mats to wine racks to plant pots.
If you’re staying close to Porthmadog you can travel here on the Ffestiniog Railway. There’s just a short connecting bus ride from Blaenau Ffestiniog railway station.
This museum, in the pretty mountain village of Llanberis, tells the story of the Welsh slate industry. And what a story it is. North Wales was once the slate capital of the world and people have been quarrying slate here for over 1,800 years. Slates were used to build parts of the Roman fort in Segontium in Caernarfon, as well as for parts of Edward I's castle at Conwy.
Victorian workshops are presented as though quarrymen and engineers have just put down their tools and left the courtyard for home, and an array of talks and demonstrations, including slate-splitting, give you a real insight into quarry life.
Fron Haul, a row of four quarrymen’s houses shows you just how the mining families used to live. Entry to the museum is free, check here for visiting times.
Experience a fantastic family adventure, but don't forget to bring your head for heights! Tree Top Adventure is a unique, fully equipped high ropes centre which is guaranteed to deliver a memorable and adrenalin-packed day out. Take your pick from the Tree Top Tower - a 106ft 'parachute simulator' plummet, a 5-seater giant Skyride Swing which will sweep you 120ft into the air above Conwy Valley, or the Adventurers High Ropes Tour (height restrictions apply). Junior Tree Trail for the under 8s. All brilliant fun.
Sister to the wonderful Ffestiniog Railway, but by no means in her shadow, the Welsh Highland Railway is the UK’s longest heritage railway. It runs 25 miles from its start next to the awe-inspiring UNESCO World Heritage Site of Caernarfon Castle. From there it steams forth into the foothills of Snowdonia passing lakes, forests and stunning mountain scenery. You’ll descend into the pretty mountain village of Beddgelert before swooping through the Beddgelert Forest and crossing the remarkable Aberglaslyn Pass.
The journey ends at Porthmadog. The ride is an absolute joy – from the beautifully upholstered period carriages and first class Pullman luxury to the freshly-cooked food which you can have delivered to your seat. Another day out that’s guaranteed to generate big smiles.
How do you fancy the idea of flying 500ft above some of the most beautiful landscapes in the UK at speeds of up to 100mph? This adrenalin-fuelled attraction guarantees a completely unique and memorable holiday experience in North Wales.
Zip World Velocity won international acclaim when it opened at Bethesda in March 2013. It features a pair of zip lines, a mile long, where riders can experience something that is very close to flying. The birds-eye views across the Menai Strait to Anglesey and beyond are just stunning.
You’ll find Zip Titan close to Llechwedd Slate Caverns near the historic slate mining town of Blaenau Ffestiniog. It’s the first four-person zip line in Europe and features 8km of zip lines to race down. Great for enjoying a thrilling holiday experience with your friends. The combination of Zip World Velocity and Zip World Titan makes North Wales the zip line capital of the world.
We hand-pick all our cottages and in this selection you'll find the perfect cottage for your family.
We'd happily stay in any of our cottages so you can be sure to find everything you need for a great holiday.
18 Tai Newydd Llanfaelog, near Rhosneigr "This bright bungalow offers the best of both worlds peace sitting watching the sheep grazing or just down the road to the buzz of Rhosneigr. Lovely walks from the house."
Sleeps : 4
£400 - £620 per week
Changeover day : Sat
1 Pen Y Parc Beaumaris, Anglesey "A fab, bright & light house with lots of room for lots of people to stay without getting under each other's feet. A great house in a great location."
Sleeps : 8
£1055 - £1790 per week
Changeover day : Fri