Wondering where the most Instagrammable places in Wales are? From picturesque villages, breathtaking mountains, scenic hikes, fairytale castles and dreamy landscapes, Wales is a photographer’s dream! Being from Wales, I am always proud to shout out about how gorgeous and Instagrammable my hometown is! I’ve compiled a list featuring travel blogger recommendations of the most Instagrammable places in Wales so that you can see where the most Instagram-friendly places to photograph in Wales are.
Pip and the City
This whimsical and enchanting tourist village in Gwynedd, is a little slice of Italy in North Wales. It was designed and built by Sir Clough Williams-Ellis and was the filming location of British television series ‘The Prisoner’. With pastel coloured buildings, charming fountains and manicured gardens, it’s a total Instagrammer’s dream. Spend a day wandering around this dreamy village and make use of the onsite shops, spa, cafes and restaurants. You can pay to visit for the day or stay overnight in one of their stylish hotels, or self-catering cottages.
We never meant to climb Tryfan. We were supposed to climb the mountain next to Tryfan. It is one of the best mistakes we have ever made during our travels.
Tryfan is possibly one of the most instagrammable mountains in Britain. As you drive up to the mountain you notice its childlike triangular shape. Completely grey with no green patches it is an ominous site, but it has been voted Britain’s favourite mountain. It’s understandable why – climbing Tryfan is a terrific adventure! There is no set path, walkers must make their own way over the rocks and are forced to ‘scramble’ (hiking where you use your hands) to the summit where you rewarded with awesome viewsThere are so many instagrammable moments at Tryfan. Take shots of the mountain itself, document your steep ascent and of course, take a few shots of the lovely views from the top of Tryfan.
Cardiff is famous for many things, and one of them is its Arcades. With the highest concentration of Victorian, Edwardian and contemporary Arcades, Cardiff is known as the ‘City of Arcades’. Designed to keep shoppers off the cold and the rain, these Arcades are the original shopping centre. They are a destination in themselves with great independent shops and some of the best foodie places in the city. But aside from their functional side, they are some of the most photogenic spots in the city and in Wales – so full of character and evoking nostalgia for a bygone era. They all have tons of charm, but if I had to pick a favourite, it would have to be Castle Arcade.
The Pontcysyllte Aqueduct
Historic narrowboat canals cover much of England and Wales. These were built during the early years of the industrial revolution to transport goods to the major centres and ports. Near the cute village of Llangollen in western Wales you will find the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct, one of the many astonishing engineering features of the British canal system. This is a navigable bridge, 38 metres high and over 300 metres long, where boats cross the deep valley below. The structure is so amazing it’s now World Heritage listed. 18 arched stone pillars support deep cast-iron troughs filled with water, thus forming a “River in the Sky”. For photo opportunities, walk across the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct along the towpath. The best Instagram location is at the south end, where you can cross under the aqueduct and come up the other side of the towpath.
If you’re a bibliophile and are looking for the best book-related instagrammable spot in Wales, then you need to look no further than the beautiful town of Hay-on-Wye. Once in the settlement, which can be found on the Welsh-English border, you’ll find oodles of bookshops, shelves on the streets, and even an honesty bookstore housed within the ruins of the old castle walls… Hay is best visited in the European shoulder seasons and mid-week, so as to avoid the crowds. And one of the biggest highlights of this town includes the annual Hay Festival, which is held in late spring. Elsewhere in the town, there’s pretty much a photo opportunity around every corner!
Caernarfon Castle is a medieval castle in Caernarfon, an old town in North Wales. The castle was built when the English king Edward I had invaded Wales. Inside the castle, you won’t find elaborately decorated rooms or old furniture. Nevertheless, you can explore almost every corner of the castle, climb every stair and walk over the fortification walls. From the towers of Caernarfon Castle, you can see Snowdonia in the distance. You can take the best Instagram picture of Caernarfon on Aber Foreshore Road, where you’ll have a spectacular view of the castle. The fortifications of the castle loom high and look impossible to conquer. Moreover, in front of the castle, there are several fishing boats lying at anchor, which will make your Instagram photo complete.
Pip and the City
Goldcliff is a shingle and silt beach located just outside of Newport that is popular with fishermen who come to catch sole, rays and seabass. Whilst it’s maybe not the best place for sunbathing or swimming, it’s a rather bracing seaside stroll for serious walkers as it forms part of the Wales coastal path, you can get some great shots by the shoreline for the gram!. There are a few pubs and cafes nearby including the kooky Seawall cafe. Goldcliff Beach was featured as part of my ‘Instagrammable places in Newport‘ travel video for BBC Sesh. Why not check it out for some Instagram inspiration?
The Great Orme
Pip and the City
The Great Orme is an extremely photogenic limestone headland above the town of Llandudno in North Wales. It is a great spot for hiking, photographs and picnics. You can even ride all the way up to the Great Orme in North Wales on Britain’s only cable-hauled street Tramway or take the cable car. This massive chunk of limestone rises 207m straight out of the sea and gives a fabulous view of the ocean and surrounding countryside. It’s also home to plenty of wildlife, flora and fauna and is a designated country park.
In Wales, there is truly little that ISN’T Instagrammable! Especially in Snowdonia, where it seems that fantasy novels may suddenly come to like. A few years ago, we hiked at Cym Idwal, an impressive rocky hill that is reached by an open trail. During the hike, you arrive at a gorgeous lake. Often, this will be shrouded in mist, which is to be expected in the highlands of Wales. But on a clear day, the views are breathtaking. Best of all, the spot is totally Instagrammable from start to finish. Amazing scenery and a fun hike, what’s not to love? Why not visit Cym Idwal as part of a romantic UK road trip?
Why not book a tour in Wales?
Pip and the city
Roath Park is a very popular historic park in Cardiff, with a classic Victorian layout and feel. There is a 30-acre man-made lake that you can go boating on and features the iconic Scott Memorial Lighthouse. Stroll around the picturesque gardens, feed the swans, have an ice cream, or relax with a coffee in the lakeside cafe. A little further up from the park is Roath recreational park, which also has many Instagrammable spots, especially in Autumn.
Apparently, llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch, which is on the island of Anglesey in North Wales, is the longest place name in the U.K. and the second-longest in the world. In case you’re wondering, number 1 is in Thailand. In this image, the name appears on the town railway station. A mouthful, it translates into English as, “St. Mary’s Church in the hollow of white hazel near a rapid whirlpool and the Church of St. Tysilio near the red cave.” My regret is that I didn’t buy a souvenir tea towel. It is interesting to know that actress Naomi Watts once lived here. Should you run into her, ask her how to pronounce it.”
Pen y Fan
Pen y Fan in the Brecon Beacons is one of the most Instagrammable places in Wales. The beautiful thing about this spot is that it’s not just one photo opportunity. The walk up to Pen y Fan is simply stunning and you’ll be taking photos the entire walk. Plus it’s the highest mountain in all of South Wales so you can add that accolade to your list! Once you reach Pen y Fan summit, you can take the iconic summit photo but on a clear day there are views of the Brecon Beacons for miles. Pen y Fan is so Instagrammable because of its unusual shape and contours, you can get great shots from either side of the mountain. The Brecon Beacons has some wonderful walks but this has to be one of my favourites.
Living in a big city makes a visit to the verdant Welsh countryside even lovelier. My friends and I spent a weekend in a cosy cottage just across the Welsh border in Hay-on-Wye, which almost touches the fringes of the scenic Brecon Beacons National Park. Between hiking the area and spending nights playing games in front of a warm fire at ‘home’, we most enjoyed the quick walk on Hay Bluff, one of Wales’ most Instgrammable destinations. If you go off trail willy-nilly to the peak, Hay Bluff is quite steep but there is a paved path to the top if you’d like to take it easy. From the summit, you can enjoy panoramic views of the green fields, sectioned off with trees; and the faraway grazing sheep just look like white dots. You can also pose with an iconic Welsh peak marker: a white pillar emblazoned with a red dragon.
Pip and the City
Nash point is a headland on the heritage coast in South Wales and is home to the historic Nash Point Lighthouse. This 19th century, grade 2 listed lighthouse is open to the public and has a small entrance charge. It is also becoming popular as an intimate an unusual wedding venue, so check they aren’t hosting a wedding that day before you make the trip down. Once inside the lighthouse, friendly staff will give you more information on its history and significance. You can then climb up to n all the steps to the Lantern and be treated to a stunning view of the Bristol Channel
A little further up you will find Marcross Beach, the beach is mostly rocks rather than sand, but is extremely photogenic in the sunshine. It’s also a great place for a dog walk or a picnic filled with Welsh produce!
Llanddwyn Island has both the looks and the backstory to make it one of the most Instagrammable places in Wales. It’s a tidal island on the south-west coast of Anglesey, a half-hour walk along stunning Newborough beach. It’s named after Santes Dwynwen, the Welsh patron saint of lovers, and one of the first things you see as you arrive on the island is the ruined chapel dedicated to her. Llanddwyn is less than a mile long, so it only takes about 15 minutes to reach the end, the best part. There you’ll find two gorgeous small beaches, a lighthouse at the end of each, and the fantastic backdrop of the mountains of the Llŷn Peninsula across Caernarfon Bay.
Pip and the City
Aberystwyth is a historic market town with a hub of student activity thanks to Aberystwyth University. It’s also the largest town in Mid Wales. Whilst there are elements of ‘Victorian seafront town’ it also has a lot to offer in terms of culture and the arts. There are many Instagrammable spots to be found in this pretty town including the 13th-century castle, the views Constitution Hill, scenic snaps from Aberystwyth Cliff railway and from the glorious seafront.
My first visit to Wales saw me staying near the village of Crickhowell, in the Brecon Beacons. Sitting on the River Usk was Gliffaes Country House, where my husband and I stayed for the night. This true country home sat in grounds with over 600 years of horticulture history with trees from around the world. If you are visiting the area, check out this hotel for their tree walk and a great excuse to capture some Instagram worthy pictures. End it in style with Gliffaes Afternoon Tea. Crickhowell itself is a photographers dream due to its scenery, especially the Crickhowell bridge and the views of the river. I thoroughly recommend discovering this part of Wales.
Pip and the City
Cardiff Bay is a gorgeous waterfront development in the Welsh capital. It’s a permanent area of water created by the construction of Cardiff Barrage when the old Cardiff docklands were redeveloped. It is home to the Welsh Government National Assembly building, waterside restaurants, bars, cafes and shops. You can walk across the barrage to the neighbouring town of Penarth and take your Insta snaps along the way. You can also take a boat ride around the barrage or all the way to Cardiff City centre to really get the best views of the waterfront.
Penmon Dovecot is located about 3 miles east of Beaumaris, on the island of Anglesey, North Wales. In recent times it serves as the entrance to the Penmon Estate, and the start of a private toll road that leads to the beach, with Puffin Island offshore beyond it. The dovecote was built by Sir Richard Bulkeley in around 1600. It is a pretty and elegant structure from the outside but becomes very instagrammable when you step inside. From the inside, you see all four walls lined with regular square roosting holes, somewhere between 930 and 1000 of them. The birds flew in and out via the cupola in the roof. The light that comes into the dovecot through this illuminates the nesting boxes; you can’t help but imagine what it must have been like full of all those birds! Being so old it is an atmospheric building in a beautiful corner of Anglesey.
Welsh Parliament Building
The Welsh Assembly Building, popularly known as Senedd, is one of the most striking buildings you’ll see in Wales. Created to make full use of natural lighting by award-winning architect Richard Rogers and inaugurated in 2006, the Senedd cost a whopping 70 million pounds to build. Best of all, it’s free to visit! Visitors are allowed to witness public debates from a designated gallery when the Assembly is in motion. You can also visit during off-peak hours when a guide will show you around. Once you see the way light filters inside the rooms or how acoustics are handled to reach every corner of the room, you’ll feel like each of those pounds were well spent.
The Senedd is picturesque on the inside as well although its main Instagram appeal is from outside where it appears you might be walking into a modern opera building rather than the seat of Welsh Parliament. It’s location near the Cardiff Docks also means that it is largely free of tourists who spend most of their time near the Cardiff Castle’s environs. You can actually take your time to click your perfect shot without bothering about other tourists photobombing you! And of course, Senedd is a much easier word to start trending on Instagram compared to other Welsh words.
Have you visited any of the most Instagrammable places in Wales? If you are looking to see lots of photogenic spots in a day, you could explore Wales by train and take a train from Cardiff to Bangor. There are some spectacular sites on this route as well as a dining carriage serving a three-course meal if you upgrade to business class.
Need a place to stay when visiting Wales? Click on this link to join Airbnb and get £25 toward your first trip! What else should be added to this list of the most Instagrammable places in Wales? Let me know in the comments below.