Bangor, in Gwynedd, northwest Wales, is the country’s oldest city. With numerous family-friendly activities and things to experience, Bangor is a great place to visit. It is easy to get to by train and has the most breath-taking views thanks to its backdrop overlooking Menai Straits.
1. Discover the Wilds of Eryri National Park
Bangor makes a great base for exploring the world-famous Eryri National Park. Covering a vast 823 square miles (2,130 km2), the park offers diverse habitats, opportunities to see rare flora and fauna and is home to all of the highest mountains in Wales. The principal ranges contained within the park include the Yr Wyddfa massif itself, the Carneddau, the Glyderau, the Moel Hebog, and the Moelwynion range.
The mighty Yr Wyddfa, with its summit at 3560 ft, or 1085 metres, challenges climbers and walkers from around the globe. There are several routes to the top, some harder than others, but for a more leisurely approach, the Eryri Mountain Railway gets you to the top without the effort of walking.
Enclosed within the park are several charming villages including the picturesque Beddgelert, and the Porthmadog Heritage Railway takes a wonderfully winding route past lakes, steep-sided valleys and thick forests, between the villages.
- Enjoy an amazing day out for free
- Access for everyone
- Eryri Website
2. Step back in time at Penrhyn Castle
Penrhyn Castle is a fantasy castle of the 19th century. This neo-Norman castle is situated between Eryri and the Menai Strait. The elaborate and alluring architecture of the castle makes it so exquisite to look at. You can see the history of the castle in its vast rooms, Victorian kitchens, and neo-Norman stairways. Other than the surviving splendid furnishings and the magnificent interior fittings, the castle holds one of the greatest art collections of Wales. The extensive grounds of the castle offers a breathtakingly aesthetic view of the North Wales Coast.
- A short train ride from Bangor
- Prices from £6.50
- Penrhyn Castle Website
3. Take a stroll along Bangor Pier
The Grade ll listed Garth Pier offers a breathtakingly gorgeous view of the Menai Strait towards Menai Bridge, Llandudno along with the delightful Isle of Anglesey. You can experience the colourful history of what is considered the finest surviving Victorian pier in Wales and enjoy the beautiful backdrop of Eryri. The pier is perfect to just walk, sit and relax while enjoying a divine view.
- Explore the colourful history
- Magnificent views
- Bangor Pier Website
4. Enjoy the music at Bangor Cathedral
Bangor Cathedral is a 6th-century cathedral with stunning interior and architecture. It is one of the main focal points of the city. It has a unique history and gives great insight into the area and its past. The cathedral is known for its stunning music and organ recitals.
- Enjoy the architecture & history
- Visit a place of worship in use since the 6th century
- Bangor Cathedral website
5. Family fun at Puffin Island
To the north of Bangor, at the end of the Menai Strait is Puffin Island. Famous for its - yes, you guessed, puffins, but also for its 12th-century monastery. Awarded Special Protection for its wildlife, the island is home to a wide variety of seabirds and marine mammals. Razorbills, kittiwakes and guillemots share the cliffs with the puffins, but you can also spot fulmars and eider ducks, while grey seals, porpoises and even dolphins are often seen playing in the waves.
- Take a boat trip to see the wildlife
- Enjoy the stunning scenery
- Once-in-a-lifetime adventure