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Lakes in Snowdonia

Snowdonia National Park is famous for its dramatic mountains and towering peaks. Where there are mountains, there are lakes and the lakes in Snowdonia are simply breathtaking.

Whether you’re looking for a lakeside stroll, a family picnic or a morning kayak, Snowdonia is the place for you. Snowdonia’s lakes are situated in some of the most stunning locations, surrounded by impressive mountains and romantic valleys.

Looking for the best lakes in Snowdonia? Here are some of the most beautiful lakes in the region …


1. Llyn Idwal

Llyn Idwal with mountains in background

A small lake, nestled within Cwm Idwal in the Glyderau Mountains is Llyn Idwal. 800 meters long and 300 meters wide, Llyn Idwal is a small lake that can be appreciated whilst enjoying the popular Cwm Idwal Circular Walk. This is one of the best walks in Snowdonia, offering some of the most dramatic scenery in North Wales.


2. Llyn Ogwen

Llyn Ogwen in Autumn

Said to be the final resting place of Excalibur, Llyn Ogwen is situated between two impressive mountain ranges; the Glyderau and the Carneddau. This stunning lake is popular amongst many photographers, due to its atmospheric scenes and dramatic neighbouring peaks. Often said to be one of the most beautiful places in Wales, Llyn Ogwen is the perfect place to explore whilst staying in one of these delightful cottages in Capel Curig.


3. Llyn Padarn

The lonely tree at llyn padarn

A much-loved lake in Snowdonia, Llyn Padarn is popular amongst families and water-sport lovers alike. Set within a beautiful country park, Llyn Padarn is the perfect place for a scenic walk around the lake or a morning kayaking on its peaceful waters. If you’re enjoying a holiday in Llanberis, be sure to check out other local attractions including Dolbardarn Castle and the National Slate Museum.


4. Llyn Llydaw

The miners path crossing Llyn Llydaw

Another lake claiming to contain King Arthur’s magical sword, Llyn Llydaw is one of the most visited lakes in the United Kingdom. This long, thin lake, can be found about one-third of the way up Snowdon, whilst walking along the picturesque Miners’ Track. The beach at its far end, is the ideal picnic spot, before descending back down to Pen-y-Pass.


5. Glaslyn

Views of Glaslyn and Llyn Llydaw from the summit of Snowdon

Surrounded by imposing peaks, Glaslyn can be found at the foot of Snowdon. Meaning Blue Lake, Glaslyn is positioned approximately 600m above sea level in a picturesque cwm on the eastern flanks of Wales’ highest mountain. Enjoy views of its crystal-clear waters whilst taking on one of Snowdon’s six walking routes.


6. Llyn Dinas

Llyn Dinas and blue skies

Associated with the tales of Arthur and Merlin, Llyn Dinas is home to panoramic scenery and some fantastic walks for the whole family to enjoy. Located in Beddgelert, this beautiful lake in Snowdonia gets its name from the nearby hillfort of Dinas Emrys, the remains of fortifications belonging to the ancient princes of Gwynedd.


7. Llyn Cau

Llyn Cau below Cadair Idris

The dark blue crater lake of Llyn Cau is a challenging lake to reach. Nestled in one of Snowdonia’s mighty mountains, Llyn Cau can be found whilst hiking to the summit of Cadair Idris. The 350m ascent up from the car park is worth every step, as you’ll be rewarded with breathtaking scenes upon reaching this stunning Snowdonia lake.


8. Llyn Tegid

Bala Lake surrounded by forests

A list of Snowdonia’s best lakes wouldn’t be complete without mentioning the popular Llyn Tegid. Positioned on the edge of Bala, an old market town, Llyn Tegid is the largest natural lake in Wales. Bala Lake (as it’s more commonly known) is a popular holiday destination, where you can enjoy a range of watersports such as canoeing, sailing and stand up paddleboarding.


9. Llyn Cwellyn

Llyn Cwellyn surrounded by green fields and countryside

Llyn Cwellyn is one of Snowdonia’s most accessible lakes, ideal for a lakeside stroll. The Llyn Cwellyn boardwalk takes you on a journey through enchanting lakeside woodlands, with striking views of Llyn Cwellyn and Mount Snowdon. The path, reached via the Snowdon Ranger Car Park, is wheelchair and pushchair accessible.


10. Tal-y-Llyn Lake (Llyn Mwngil)

A road alongside Llyn Mwngil

A 220-acre glacial ribbon lake, Tal-y-Llyn is located just north of Machynlleth in Southern Snowdonia. This beautiful lake in Snowdonia is popular amongst fishermen, offering excellent brown trout fishing. Situated at the base of Cadair Idris, the lake acts as an alternative starting point for walking to the summit of the remarkable mountain. The lake is well worth a visit if you’re staying in the nearby town of Dolgellau.


11. Llyn Geirionydd

Llyn Geirionydd on a dark winters night

This peaceful lake in Snowdonia is found within the beautiful setting of Gwydyr Forest. A popular spot for watersports, Llyn Geirionydd is the only lake in the region allowing powerboats and waterskiing. With picnic spots situated around the lake, this is a perfect family day out whilst enjoying a holiday in Betws-y-Coed.


From peaceful picnic spots to a day of exhilarating watersports, these lakes in Snowdonia are a must for anyone visiting North Wales. If you’re looking for somewhere to stay during your Snowdonia adventure, take a look at these Snowdonia holiday cottages.


Image Credits: William Hook, Peter Morgan, Stephen Fulljames and Ian Cunliffe (CC BY-SA 2.0) and Stuart Madden (CC BY 2.0).

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