With barely four miles between the summits of the Rhinog mountains and the sea, the area is a haven for all types of outdoors activities, all carried out in incomparable scenery. Across the bay lies the Lleyn peninsula, and the eye sweeps north along the Nantlle Ridge, to the summit of Snowdon, and round to the Glyderau, Carneddau and the two nearer Moelwyns. Since the coastal strip is hardly a mile wide it means that most of the activities are very centralised and close at hand. A quick trip up the mountains in the morning could be followed by a swim off one of our lovely beaches in the afternoon.
Here is a small selection of ideas to keep you occupied during your stay in the area and further afield.
There is hardly an area in the world that can offer the same cycling experience coupled with fantastic countryside as Snowdonia. The north /south cycleway passes within a mile of Gwrach Ynys. And the area has vast amounts of both Cycling and Mountain bike trails suitable for people of all ages and abilities.
Traffic free tail.
The Mawddach Trail which is part of the National cycle Network is only 20 minute drive. It is a 9 mile, one way stretch along the picturesque Mawddach estuary on the former rail track to Dolgellau. If you are feeling more energetic you can start in Barmouth, cross the bridge, join the tack, visit the RSPB centre at Penmaenpool and stop for a snack and drink at the George Hotel. A great day out.
Lon Las Eifion a scenic traffic free trail that goes from Bryncir to Caernarfon along another old rail track.
Mountain Bikes and Forest trails In Snowdonia, you will be spoilt for choice for places to go cycling and mountain biking. There are numerous forestry locations and some have excellent facilities for families and for mountain bikers alike
Coed y Brenin Centre at Ganllwyd hosts world champion competitions and has a network of fantastic hand built all weather single tracks. For more information visit their Web site
Other Forest cycling centres
Marin MTB trail (Gwydir Forest, Betws y Coed)
Penmachno Forest - Dolen Machno & Dolen Eryri
When having a day off the bike you would be welcome to leave it in our secure garage. Or if you have forgotten your bike at home there are plenty of places to hire bikes.
There is good bass fishing off the beach and mackerel fishing off shore. Sea fishing trips are available from Barmouth when you might even catch a shark. The Glaslyn, Dwyryd, Artro and Mawddach all have good early season salmon runs. The local streams and mountain lakes have wild brown trout, and a few of the larger lakes are also stocked. The local fishing association is the Artro and Talsarnau Assciation and licences and permits can be bought in the local post offices.
If you would like a local knowlegable guide to take you Fly Fishing for Brown Trout in the Mountain Lakes contact Brian Macdonald.
A local shop where you can buy all your fishing requirement visit
Arwyn at Gynnau Penrhyn Tel 01766 770339 or Celt at Sheffield House , Criccieth
4 x4 Safari to see the rich landscape and wildlife of Meirionydd
For the not so active but for the one's who enjoy an adventure to see the mountains, lakes , superb landscape, scenery and wildlife with a knowledgeable guide contact Brian Macdonald.
Snowdonia has some of the best and most varied rock climbing in the world. The dramatic landscape, with its steep mountain ridges and magnificent sea cliffs has proved to be an irresistible magnet for those seeking the adventure and thrill of the climbing experience.
The main climbing areas are Llanberis pass and Ogwen, but the cliffs at Tremadog have a good selection of classic routes, and because they are low level they tend to be dryer than some of the areas further north. An interesting article about rock climbing in snowdonia can be found here.
Bouldering is an increasingly popular sub-sport of climbing. In many respects it is the purest form of climbing, in that it focuses upon the simple act of climbing boulders or small faces, usually less than 15 feet high
Artificial indoor climbing walls have become increasingly popular over the last 10 years. For many young climbers they offer a safe entry point into the wider sport of rock climbing. There is an indoor wall opening shortly at the swimming pool Harlech.
Gorge walking is a newer extreme activity which takes place on several of our rivers. Another up and coming extreme sport is coasteering whereby you make your way along a rocky coastline by means of scrambling, climbing, abseiling and swimming when the need arises. You should only try extreme sports if you are proficient and experienced.
High wire Activity picture
For the brave who enjoy a challenge –tree top activities, tight rope walks, balance beams, swings jumps and platforms
A relatively new activity which becoming very popular with family, groups and individuals.
High ropes outdoor activity centre At Park Padarn,Llanberis - http://www.ropesandladders.co.uk/
High-wire Adventure Betws y coed - http://www.ttadventure.co.uk/
Watersports – we live in an area that boasts three navigable rivers, spilling out into the Cardigan Bay, and also many tranquil mountain lakes. The sea offers boundless opportunities for sailing, power boating and water-skiing, jet skiing, and windsurfing. There are marinas at Barmouth and Pensarn, four miles down the road. We have plenty of room in the garden for you to park your craft trailers. The harbours of Porthmadog and Abersoch are also convenient, and the new marina in Pwllheli hosts world-class sailing championships.
At Bala you will find The National Whitewater Centre for watersports, which was developed as the first commercial whitewater rafting operation in Britain in 1986. Since then it has grown to become the largest rafting organisation in the country. The Centre is known by canoeists throughout the world as a top destination for white water sport, and as the venue for a series of international competitions.
The centre offer a superb range of quality activities that can be enjoyed by everyone, no previous experience is required.
Bala Lake itself is 4 miles long by 1 mile wide and is popular for all sorts of boating and water sport activities - for sailing, windsurfing and kayaking . Boats are available for hire but be sure to book well in advance at peak holiday periods. Anglers are well catered for as Bala Lake has abundant trout, pike, eel and of course the gwyniad, a white fish of the salmon family unique to Llyn Tegid.
http://www.balawatersports.com/ great web page
Llanbedr and Pensarn - http://www.lpyc.org.uk/home.htm
Horse riding and Trekking
Why not try our celebrated pub ride?
The riding centre at Gwydyr Stables (formerly Ty Coch) was established in 1973 and offers a wonderful location for horse riding, pony trekking or extended day trail rides.
We are situated 4 miles from Betws y Coed and surrounded by National Trust and Forestry Commission land. It provides breathtaking scenery in which to enjoy the excellent views across the Snowdonia Mountains.
There are experienced guides in the area who would willingly introduce you to chosen sport.
Pensarn Harbour - http://www.cmcpensarn.org.uk/index.php/mountain-activities/rock-climbing
Bala Adventure & Watersports - http://www.balawatersports.com/