Historic towns, towering peaks, picturesque islands, and multiple castles—North Wales has it all.
With the Isle of Anglesey to the west and the Wales-England border to the east, the easily accessible and densely Welsh-speaking region of North Wales encapsulates six distinct counties, including Gwynedd and Conwy, all dominated by Snowdonia National Park and skirted by rugged coastline. Home to a UNESCO-recognised wealth of Edwardian castles (including Harlech), as well as some of Wales’ tallest peaks, most remote outcrops, and charming seaside towns, rural North Wales is ideal for history buffs and camping enthusiasts alike—just remember to pack your rainproof jackets. When it comes to camping, static caravan parks are popular in Llandudno and Rhyl, while family-run campsites and glamping grounds are also scattered throughout the region (sometimes with wifi or a hot tub). Pitching a tent here means you don’t have to choose between camping by the coast and camping in the mountains—it’s all within easy reach.
National parks account for almost 20 percent of the land in Wales—and the biggest of its three parks is Snowdonia, the site of some of Wales’ tallest peaks, a number of mountain towns and villages (such as Llanberis, Bala, and Betws-y-Coed), and a network of well-marked hiking trails. Although the name implies snow, Snowdonia National Park is not really a skiing destination, but you can pitch your tent beneath the stars, rent a cosy caravan, or opt for a comfortable glamping pod experience here instead. Plus, there’s a convenient Snowdon Mountain Railway, which can take you to the very summit of Wales’ highest mountain.
You’ll see evidence of Welsh slate-mining heritage everywhere in Snowdonia, and you can learn about it in Blaenau Ffestiniog, once the centre of the industry and known as “the town that roofed the world.” Tour the former Llechwedd Slate Caverns and dip into a world of adventure with zip lines across the former quarry and unreal subterranean trampolines.
En-suite glamping pods, static caravan rentals, and sea view campsites abound on the Isle of Anglesey in North Wales, which has plenty of craggy cliffs, historic lighthouses, and outlying islands to explore. Walk the Anglesey Coastal Path, lounge on Blue Flag beaches, and look out for dolphins and seals on this charming isle, before visiting the town of Holyhead (situated on Holy Island), Beaumaris Castle, or nearby Caernarfon Castle on the Welsh mainland.
With rustic campsites galore, as well as caravan parks and glamping pods that are comfortable even in the winter months, the Llŷn Peninsula—one of North Wales’ Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty—is an excellent destination for watersports and walking. Abersoch is perhaps the best known (and most popular) town, but Portmeirion, Pwllheli, Porthdinllaen, and Aberdaron aren’t to be sniffed at either. The 23 miles of coastline include a largely unspoiled coastline of sandy beaches backed by dunes, and although the seaside can feel a world away from the mountains, the top of Snowdon is just 10 miles from the sea. The Wales Coast Path traces a route around the entire Welsh coast for a massive 870 miles—and while you may not want to tackle the whole thing on a week’s camping holiday, the well-marked route is a good place to start if you fancy a stroll with sea views.
One of the North Wales coast's best-known and most historic seaside resorts, Llandudno and its sandy beaches are still as charming as ever. Close to Conwy Castle, Colwyn Bay, Prestatyn, and Rhyl, there are a number of holiday and caravan parks in and around Llandudno, as well as motorhome hook-ups in and around the town. If you plan on pitching a tent at a camping site instead, opt to stay during the warmer summer months as this coast can get rather cold in winter.
Although sometimes overlooked in favour of Snowdonia and the Isle of Anglesey to the west, the Clwydian Range and Dee Valley in Denbighshire, northeast Wales is a stellar hiking, biking, and camping destination. Tire yourself out by walking stretches of the Offa’s Dyke Path or biking through Coed Llandegla (Llandegla Forest) before laying your head at a campervan or caravan park, campsite, or in a glamping yurt.
North Wales is a great destination for a family camping holiday. The adventure of camping alone is usually a hit with the kids, and even further, many North Wales campsites are set up with kids in mind—think play areas and game rooms. And in outdoorsy North Wales, campsites have a wilder edge, often with woodland or water for pond-dipping within walking distance.
When it comes to days out during a family-friendly camping holiday, you needn’t worry. North Wales has plenty of kid-friendly attractions, from working farm attractions to rides on heritage railways, and of course, all the fun of the seaside. Older kids can get involved in action-packed adventures like kayaking, coasteering, and climbing, and even the high peaks of Snowdonia are conquerable for children—giving them a sense of achievement that will last a lifetime.
So many campsites in North Wales are spectacularly situated, and we wouldn’t blame you if you just wanted to kick back and enjoy the view on your camping holiday. But do that, and you’ll miss out on some of the amazing places among the mountains, valleys, bays, and dunes. Here are our top recommendations.