Things to do in Barmouth
Barmouth is a beautiful coastal town at the base of the mountains in Snowdonia National Park, which overlooks Cardigan Bay. With stunning sandy beachs to the West, and epic mountainscapes to the East, Barmouth is very picturesque. There are also some fantastic day-trips nearby, making Barmouth a great place to stay if you want to make the most of what Snowdonia has to offer. If you’re wondering what there is to do in Barmouth itself, we’ve compiled a list below.
The beach is Barmouth’s main attraction because of the gorgeous golden sands that stretch out for miles. Although the beach gets busier in Summer, it’s never overcrowded. The main section of beach can be a little noisy with beach chairs, donkey rides and occasionally bouncy castles! However, it’s easy to avoid the crowds if you walk further away from town. Make sure to turn around and admire the amazing views of the mountains; it really is picture perfect. The sea is rather cold and gets pretty decent waves, so take care if you want to swim. Check the flags first and stay within sight of the shore.
We hate fairgrounds, but thought we’d better add it to the list as it is still an attraction for some. This fairground is rather small, but has the usual rides, 90s dance music and flashing lights that you’d expect from the fair. The food is over-priced, so avoid buying your chips here. Head into the main high street and you’ll find much more choice at a reasonable price.
Walk the Mawddach Trail
The Mawddach Trail is a stunning 15km trail along a disused railroad. It starts in Barmouth and finishes in Dolgellau, but there are a few entry/exit points if you want a shorter walk. The path is fairly flat the whole way, with lots of benchs in case you want to rest and admire the views. Even if you don’t want to walk the entire trail, we’d highly recommend to follow the initial section across the bridge. The scenery across the estuary is incredible. There is a box at the start of the bridge for collecting toll money, but no-one seems to pay this as the box is unmanned.
Follow the heritage trail
The Heritage Trail brings together some of Barmouth's historical buildings and features into an easy walking route. There is a printed map available from the Tourist Information Centre with some key notes about each point of interest. Barmouth has been a tourist destination since the 1750s, so is steeped in history, which is evident from some of the beautiful old buildings around town. The trail has a short circular route around the town centre as well as a couple of arms leading off, one towards the beach and the other up into the hills overlooking the town.
Hike up into the hills
The walk up to the hilltop from the town centre follows a marked footpath and leads to a lovely clearing with a fantastic vista out to sea. Although a steep ascent, this footpath is worth the climb as the views are spectacular. If you want to do some proper fell walking, Cadair Idris is only an 18 mile round trip from Barmouth. This should take 6-7 hours, so is easily achievable within a day if you’re fit enough. Take waterproofs though as the weather can change quickly in the mountains!
There are 34 different climbing routes at the Barmouth Slabs, which you’ll find by following the marked footpath up to the hill overlooking Barmouth town. Most of these require ropes, but there are bolts already in place. The rock is gritstone and the ground is nice and flat, so easy to belay from. There are some boulders above the crag, but they are not easy to get to, so we wouldn’t recommend trying these routes unless you have lead climbing experience or are with an experienced climber. For information about these routes check out the UKC website here.
Barmouth has a few small, but very interesting unique museums maintained by the Sailor’s Institute. These include the Billiards Reading Rooms, Tŷ Gwyn (The Bronze Bell Museum) and Tŷ Crwn, which is a tiny round building once used to lock up drunk sailors and trouble makers. Entry is by a small donation or you can pay an annual membership fee of just £5 to help with costs of upkeep. Find out more here.
We hope we’ve given you enough inspiration to head to Barmouth; it truly is a stunning location! If you found this post useful, please share it with others. We’d love to hear your comments below!