Eryri National Park’s majestic mountains, lush valleys, and crystal-clear lakes attract visitors from across the globe. Choosing the best time to visit Eryri depends on the type of visit you’d like. This guide explores the pros and cons of visiting Eryri in each season, helping you plan an unforgettable visit to the National Park.
Springtime marks a period of rejuvenation in Eryri as the landscape comes back to life after the autumn and winter months.
The season offers the perfect opportunity to explore the historical wonders of Eryri, including its magnificent castles or Yr Ysgwrn, the cherished home of one of Wales’ most celebrated poets, Hedd Wyn.
Spring also offers an ideal climate for engaging in recreational pursuits like canoeing or paddleboarding. With warmer temperatures and less crowded waters compared to the summer months, it’s a great time to immerse yourself in these outdoor activities.
While spring is the second busiest season in Eryri, the number of visitors during this time is only about half of what it is during the summer months. This makes spring an ideal time to visit Eryri if you’re looking for warmer weather without the crowds that come with summertime.
However, it’s worth keeping in mind that the easter and spring bank holidays tend to attract a surge of visitors as schools close and families take advantage of the pleasant weather.
If you can, visiting Eryri during the school term or on weekdays is a good option if you want to avoid the hustle and bustle that often accompanies the popular holiday periods.
As temperatures get warmer, you might enjoy exploring one of the many campsites and glamping sites in and around the National Park, but it’s best to keep in mind that rain is still likely during the spring.
You should book any accommodation in advance as the spring and summer seasons are the busiest times in Eryri.
Spring can be a good time to visit Eryri if you’re looking to enjoy warmer weather while also avoiding the busy summer months.
However, you should note that the easter and spring bank holidays can get extremely busy throughout the National Park and the surrounding areas.
If you’re visiting with a canine companion, you should remind yourself that many farming activities such as the lambing season happen during the spring. You should always keep your dog under close control on public footpaths. If you’re close to livestock, you should keep your dog on a lead.
The summer is by far the busiest season in Eryri. It’s no surprise that the National Park sees such an increase in visitors during the summer months as schools close and the weather gets warmer. Water activities such as canoeing and paddleboarding are very popular and most visitors enjoy hiking the many thousands of miles of routes to Eryri’s breathtaking mountain summits.
During the summer, visitor numbers can double in Eryri compared to the spring. The key to visiting Eryri in the summer is to plan before your visit, book what you can in advance and be aware that it will be busy—especially in popular areas such as Yr Wyddfa, Llanberis, Ogwen and Betws y Coed.
If you’re considering visiting any attractions, it’s best to check their availability well in advance and book your place beforehand to avoid disappointment.
Booking your accommodation in advance is highly recommended if you’re visiting Eryri in the summer, as many options will be fully-booked months ahead.
While there’s no guarantee of completely dry summers in the National Park, it’s often warm and dry enough to stay at one of the many camping and glamping sites in and around the National Park. There are also plenty of self-accommodation options, B&Bs and hotels.
You might also want to consider your accommodation’s proximity to public transport connections if you’re visiting Eryri without a car.
While some camping sites accept last-minute arrivals, booking a campsite beforehand is the best way to avoid disappointment.
Remember, wild camping is not permitted anywhere in Eryri without prior permission from the landowner.
If you’re thinking about climbing Yr Wyddfa during the summer months, you should be aware of the higher number of visitors the mountain attracts.
In 2021, over 115,000 visitors climbed Yr Wyddfa in August alone, compared to 55,000 in May. The summit is often very busy during the summer with long queues to reach the summit cairn.
Using the Sherpa’r Wyddfa bus service to travel to the Yr Wyddfa area is also highly recommended. The service is expanded over the summer with regular buses to and from the routes to the summit.
Depending on who you’re visiting Eryri with, it might be useful to consider visiting the National Park during quieter seasons if you’re not prepared for how busy it can get in some areas.
Planning your trip ahead is essential when visiting Eryri in the summer. You must book any accommodation months in advance and booking entry to attractions in and around the National Park is also highly recommended.
You might also want to consider making use of the train and bus networks in the National Park as car parks can quickly become full during peak hours.
Autumn brings a special kind of charm to Eryri. The landscape’s rustic autumnal colours and the cooler temperatures add a wholesome appeal to the area.
Depending on temperatures at the time, some of Eryri’s highest peaks might be snow-covered. You should take extra precautions and keep a close eye on the weather if you’re thinking of reaching any of Eryri’s summits during the autumn. However, there are plenty of woodland walks to enjoy within the National Park—perfect for autumnal strolls.
Eryri’s autumnal charm is also a great opportunity to enjoy some photography and, if the weather permits, you might catch a glimpse of the National Park’s mesmerising dark sky.
The number of visitors to Eryri can be significantly less during the autumn compared to the busy spring and summer seasons. This makes autumn a great time to enjoy the National Park’s natural beauty in a quieter and more peaceful environment.
While weekends can still attract a fair amount of visitors, weekdays tend to be less busy. Therefore, if you have the flexibility to travel during the week, you’ll likely have a more peaceful experience.
Accommodation options in Snowdonia during autumn are varied and plentiful. From cosy cottages to luxury hotels, there is something to suit every budget and preference.
With fewer visitors in the area during autumn, you may have more flexibility with your accommodation options. However, it’s always best to book in advance if you can.
It’s also important to note that many campsites will close during the autumn and winter months so it’s best to plan ahead if you’re considering outdoor accommodation.
There are normally plenty of accommodation options in Eryri during the autumn months. However, the weekends can get busy so it’s best to book in advance if you’re sure of your plans.
As one of the seasons with the fewest visitor numbers, autumn can be a great time to explore some of the busier areas such as Cwm Idwal.
Most amenities such as pubs, restaurants and cafes will be open but they might operate at reduced hours.
Some of Eryri’s visitor attractions might also operate at reduced hours so it’s best to plan your visits to attractions ahead to avoid disappointment.
Public transport services are also reduced during the autumn.
The winter months tend to be the quietest at the National Park and can be the perfect opportunity to enjoy the solitude and tranquillity of Eryri.
You’ll need to be extra cautious if you’re thinking about reaching some of Eryri’s summits during the winter. Getting to some of the highest peaks require experience and thorough knowledge of mountaineering in winter conditions. Adventure Smart’s website has many useful resources for mountain safety. However, there are plenty of safer winter walks to enjoy in the National Park including woodland strolls and lakeside routes.
Some local amenities will operate on reduced hours, but there are still opportunities to enjoy warming fireside tipples and meals. It will also be Eryri’s peak dark sky season during the winter—perfect for any budding astro-photographers.
The winter months are the quietest of all seasons in the National Park. However, Christmas and New Year’s can get very busy.
The cold and wet weather can often sound off-putting to many, but with plenty of waterproof, warm layers, visiting Eryri in winter can be a magical experience.
Due to the cold weather, many campsites and glamping sites will be closed. Therefore, you’ll need to explore self-accommodation, B&B or hotel options.
If you’re thinking of visiting during Christmas or New Year, you’ll need to book your accommodation in advance.
Additionally, some business such as pubs and restaurants tend to close throughout January and sometimes as far as February.
If you’re considering reaching some of Eryri’s peaks during the winter, you’ll need to exercise caution. Ascending to the highest peaks requires experience and a thorough understanding of mountaineering in winter conditions. Adventure Smart’s website has many useful resources for safety in the mountains.
Most campsites and glamping sites will be closed during the winter so you’ll need to look for self-accommodation, B&B or hotel options.