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Things to do in Llanberis

Updated: Jan 15

The village of Llanberis, nestled at the foot of Yr Wyddfa (Snowdon) packs a mighty punch. With various natural attractions, places of historical interest and outdoor adventures there are plenty of things to do.

Llanberis slate quarries. One of the top attractions in Llanberis

There are lots of things to do in Llanberis. Some of our top picks include:

  • National Slate Museum

  • Climbing Yr Wyddfa (Snowdon) via the Llanberis path

  • Llanberis Lake Railway

  • Dolbadarn Castle

  • Padarn Country Park

Keep reading to find the top 10 things to do in this picturesque Welsh village. If you want to venture further afield then check out our blog article Things to do in Snowdonia

Woman hiking up Snowdon looking back down the Llanberis Path towards the village of Llanberis

Climb Yr Wyddfa's (Snowdon) Llanberis Path

Towering above the village of Llanberis and the rest of Wales is Yr Wyddfa (Snowdon). At 1085m above sea level it is the highest mountain in Wales and higher than all of the mountains in England too!

Llanberis is the gateway to Snowdon and the Llanberis Path is one of the easier routes to the summit and has stunning views along the way. This is one of the most enjoyable footpaths up Snowdon and starts in Llanberis village making it one of the best things to do from the village itself with no need to drive anywhere. On a good day trekkers will have grand vistas of majestic mountain valleys, lakes, cliffs as well as the North Wales coast. It will certainly keep you busy all day.

Snowdon Mountain Railway train with mountain in background

Snowdon Mountain Railway

For those wishing to enjoy the views from the summit of Mount Snowdon, Wales's highest mountain, without actually walking up, the Snowdon Mountain Railway is just the ticket.

This leisurely ride takes visitors from the Snowdon Mountain Railway Station to the summit in around an hour and is one of the most scenic railway journeys in the UK if not the world!

At the top visitors will get 30 a minute stop over to enjoy the views of North Wales and visit Hafod Eryri, the UK's highest visitor centre. The round trip takes around 2.5 hours.

Of interest to hikers and rail users alike is the gift shops which sell Snowdon souvenirs and memorabilia. There is one gift shop at the Hafod Eryri visitor centre on the summit and another at the Snowdon Mountain Railway Station down in Llanberis.

Be sure to book your tickets in advance as they sell out in advance especially at weekends and school holidays. It is almost always impossible to walk up and just get the train down.

Walk from Llanberis High Street: 3 mins

Green black and red steam train with next to lake with mountains in the background
Image Credit: Llanberis Lake Railway

Llanberis Lake Railway

Journey back in time and take a trip along the shores of Llyn Padarn on the Llanberis Lake Railway. This historical steam train makes a five mile return journey which takes around an hour.

Visitors will enjoy views of Yr Wyddfa (Snowdon), Dolbadarn castle and Llyn Padarn. This is a great activity for small children and dog owners.

Walk from Llanberis High Street: 3 mins

Blacksmith using forge at National Slate Museum
Image Credit: National Slate Museum

National Slate Museum

Immerse yourself in the rich industrial heritage of the Welsh slate industry by visiting the National Slate Museum. The museum is housed in the industrial Victorian workshops of Dinorwig Quarry which is chiselled into Elidir mountain, one of the tallest mountains in Wales.

The living museum incudes regular events, talks and demonstrations including slate splitting shows as well as a blacksmith at work.

This has to be one of the best free things to do in Llanberis and is mostly inside so is a good choice on a rainy day.

Walk from Llanberis High Street: 20 mins

Dolbadarn Castle with Llanberis Pass and mountains in background

Dolbadarn Castle

Towering over the village is the sturdy round tower of Dolbadarn Castle. Originally built by the Welsh Prince Llwelyn the Great during the 13th Century the castle lies at the bottom of the Llanberis Pass and would have been a symbol of Llwelyn's power and authority.

By 1283 the castle was the base of the government before it was taken by Edward I a year later. After this Dolbadarn was used as a manor house into the 14th Century after which it fell into disrepair.

These days it can be viewed for free where it's commanding position and excellent views of the surrounding countryside can still be appreciated.

Walk from Llanberis High Street: 15 mins

Ceunant Mawr waterfall (Llanberis Falls)

Llanberis Falls

You don't have to climb a mountain to experience incredible natural beauty in Snowdonia National Park and the Ceunant Mawr waterfall (Llanberis Falls) is testament to this.

Situated a short walk from the centre of Llanberis the beautiful waterfalls are set in lush temperate rainforest. The evergreen mosses, hard ferns and lichens make this a great place to visit year round especially when they are dripping in rain.

Be aware that wild swimming in the plunge pools is extremely dangerous and forbidden. There have been several fatalities here over the years. If you want to go swimming then Llyn Padarn or the Watkin Path waterfalls and plunge pools are a much better choice.

Walk from Llanberis High Street: 20 mins

The lonely tree on Llyn Padarn

Llyn Padarn

The serene glacial lake of Llyn Padarn is situated just two mins walk from Llanberis High Street and flanked by some of the biggest mountains in the country. From the lake there are excellent views of Dolbadarn Castle, the Llanberis Pass and the Slate Quarries.

The accessibility of the lake and grand scenery makes it a great place for watersports enthusiasts. Wild swimming, paddle boarding and kayaking are some of the best activities the lake has to offer. Kit can be hired from various outfitters in the village.

For those who don't want to get their feet wet there is a circular route around the lake. This moderate walk takes around two hours. One of the highlights is Pen-y-Llyn, Welsh for the 'end of the lake' where there is a bridge at the point where the lake flows into the Afon Rhythallt river. This is one of the most picturesque and photographed places in North Wales.

Walk from Llanberis High Street: 2 mins

Old miners cottages at Padarn Country Park in autumn

Padarn Country Park

The beautiful 800 acre Padarn Country Park is situated at the foot of Pen y Pass and is a Site of Special Scientific Interest due to its important wildlife and geology.

Welsh Mountain Goats can often be spotted (and smelled) in the park and are believed to have roamed the area since the last ice age nearly 10,000 years ago.

In addition, the glacially formed lake is home to Arctic Charr; a special arctic fish which are believed to have been left over when the glaciers retreated 10,000 years ago and is one of only three natural habitats in Wales where they can be found.

The park includes the Lôn Las Peris cycling track and sighnposted walking trails such as the lake walk, nature trail or woodland walk which range from 1.5- 8km long.

Walk from Llanberis High Street: 20 mins

Colourful shops of Llanberis Highstreet

Browse Llanberis High Street

The colourful high street of Llanberis is set against a dramatic mountain backdrop giving it a real alpine feel.

With delightful cafes, delicious restaurants and some of the best outdoor shops around, the high street is the place to go if you want to treat yourself.

Our personal favourite indulgence after a hot hike on a sunny day is Georgio's ice cream which sells 24 scrumptious flavours of home made ice cream.

Secret waterfall in Llanberis slate quarries

Explore the slate quarries

Experience the industrial heritage of North Wales and explore the slate quarries. There is a public right of way cutting right through the middle of this unique landscape which is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

At it's peak it employed 3000 people and produced 100,000 tonnes of slate every year before it's closure in 1969. Once the second largest slate mine in the world, it is now a unique and major British rock climbing venue and has been the filmset for Clash of the Titans and Willow among others.

Walk from Llanberis High Street: 40 mins

Sunset from Yr Wyddfa summit

Watch the sun set from the summit of Snowdon

Tackle the most popular footpath up Yr Wyddfa (Snowdon) when it is pleasantly quiet. From the highest point in Wales watch the sun light up the sky in one of the most magnificent displays nature has to offer.

You will then walk back to Llanberis under a blanket of stars in one of the few International Dark Sky Reserves. This is not to be missed!

Organise an unforgettable adventure with Walk Snowdonia


History of Llanberis

Until the early 19th Century, what is now the village of Llanberis was sparsely a populated farming community and not a village. Agriculture was the main source of income and Nant Peris was the predominant settlement in the valley.

It was not until the opening of Vivian Quarry in the 1870's and the introduction of largescale industrial mining which greatly contributed to the rapid growth of the village as the 3000 workers servicing the quarry needed homes.

Electric Mountain

Unfortunately, Electric Mountain has been closed for the last few years and will remain closed for the foreseeable future. There are currently no plans to reopen the visitor centre (which has just been demolished) or facilitate underground tours.

Zip World

Just a short drive from Llanberis on the opposite side of Elidir Fawr mountain is Zip World.

Featuring the world's longest zip line, as well as quarry karts and an aero explorer this is not an activity to be missed for all the adrenaline junkies out there.

Car Parking

Llanberis parking is normally plentiful as there are several options in the village the largest of which include...

How to get to Llanberis

Llanberis is accessible by car and public transport. Although there is no train station the village it is well connected by bus to the transport hubs of Bangor, Betws-y-Coed and Porthmadog all of which have train stations.

How many days should I spend in Llanberis?

Two days would give you enough time to conquer Yr Wyddfa (Snowdon) on one day and visit some of the other attractions in Llanberis on the other. Given it's excellent location and transport links to the rest of Snowdonia National Park and the North Wales coast Llanberis would be a great location to base yourself for a week or more.

If you're visiting Llanberis check out some of our other informative blogs about the local area...


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