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Mountains in Wales

A hiker sitting looking at the view from the Brecon Beacons
A hiker takes in the views from the Brecon Beacons | © National Trust Images / James Dobson

Explore the spectacular peaks of Wales for an exhilarating mountain adventure with wildlife, history, and breathtaking views. From the Brecon Beacons and the Black Mountains in South Wales, to the dizzying heights of Snowdonia, discover the top rugged mountains in the wild Welsh landscape.

Mountains in the Brecon Beacons

Pen y Fan
At 886m, Pen y Fan is the highest mountain in southern Britain followed by Corn Du at 873 metres. The long ascent to the top of Pen y Fan is well worth the effort with views stretching across South and Mid Wales, and across the Severn Estuary into South West England. The landscape is high, remote, and exhilarating. Look out for Llyn Cwm Llwch, the best preserved glacial lake in South Wales at the head of the Cwm Llwch valley.Explore Pen y Fan
The Sugar Loaf
Appearing between the ridges of the Llanwenarth, Deri and Rholben hills the Sugar Loaf is an impressive backdrop to the market town of Abergavenny in South Wales. Standing at 596 metres high, it’s one of the highest peaks in the Black Mountains and a haven for wildlife, with open moorland and deep wooded valleys.Explore the Sugar Loaf
The Skirrid
The last outcrop of the Black Mountains rises dramatically out of the landscape, despite being smaller than its neighbours at 486 metres high. Isolated from the main mountain range by the Gavenny Valley, the Skirrid is rich in history as well as wilderness, and is known locally as ‘the Holy Mountain’. At its summit stands the ruined chapel of St Michael’s, used by Roman Catholics until the late 17th century.Explore the Skirrid
Yr Wyddfa (Snowdon) and other mountain peaks with Hafod y Llan estate in the distance at Eryri (Snowdonia) Wales.
Yr Wyddfa (Snowdon) and other mountain peaks in Eryri (Snowdonia) Wales | © National Trust Images/Joe Cornish

Mountains in Snowdonia

Yr Wyddfa (Snowdon)
Standing at over 3,000 feet, Yr Wyddfa (Snowdon) is the highest mountain in Wales and attracts up to 600,000 visitors a year. Hafod y Llan, one of our largest in-house farms that was acquired in 1998 through public donation also includes the Watkin Path, which is one of six routes up Yr Wyddfa. This diverse landscape is a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI), and covers an area of 4000 acres (a third of Yr Wyddfa) including a National Nature Reserve.Explore Yr Wyddfa
The Carneddau mountain range has the largest contiguous areas of high ground in Wales and England as well as some of the highest peaks in the country. It includes Pen yr Ole Wen, Carnedd Dafydd, Carnedd Llewelyn, Yr Elen, Drosgl and Moel Wnion. As part of the Carneddau Landscape Partnership, we’re working with partners to deliver a 5-year scheme to help conserve the heritage of the Carneddau.Explore Carneddau
Adjacent to the Carneddau mountain range is Glyderau. Its peaks include Glyder Fawr, Glyder Fach, Tryfan and Y Garn, as well as the UK’s oldest National Nature Reserve in Wales, Cwm Idwal. The area was created around 500 million years ago in a massive subterranean upheaval that saw the creation of all of Snowdonia’s mountainsExplore Glyderau
Cwm Idwal
Cwm Idwal is a bowl-shaped hollow filled with the crystal clear waters of Llyn Idwal. The site is world famous for its rock formations and its rare and fragile plant life. It’s a popular walking spot throughout the year where people can enjoy a moderate walk up and around the shores of Llyn Idwal.Explore Cwm Idwal
The summit of this mountain on the Glyderau range in North Snowdonia, stands at 917.51 metres. This makes Tryfan one of the 14 highest peaks in Wales and marks the line between hiking and mountaineering. It was used as a training ground for Sir Edmund Hillary, who was one of the first people to successfully climb Mount Everest in 1953.Explore Tryfan
Cadair Idris
Cadair Idris is a mountain in Meirionnydd, the southern end of the Snowdonia National Park. There are a number of routes to the peak, many of them extremely challenging. This includes the Fox’s Path where you’ll find Llyn-y-Gadair – a mountain lake and part of the Chair of Idris (Cadair Idris).Explore South Snowdonia
Two people out hiking in the snow with a dog are crossing a stile between Tryfan and Glyder Fach, with Nant Ffrancon Pass in the background at Carneddau and Glyderau, Gwynedd.
Climbers crossing a stile between Tryfan and Glyder Fach | © National Trust Images/Chris Lacey

Safety tips for exploring mountains

Each year Mountain Rescue teams receive hundreds of call outs. We look after 157 miles of coastline and more than 46,000 hectares of land in Wales, with many special places to walk and challenging mountains to climb. Minimise your chance of getting lost or hurt and enjoy an exhilarating day out by following these safety tips.

Plan your route

Plan your route in advance and choose walking routes with your group’s capabilities and timings in mind. Follow pathways, avoiding cliff edges or walking on terrain that you are unsure of.

Check the weather

Glorious sunshine? Take a hat and some sun cream. Torrential rain? Consider whether the conditions are suitable based on you and your companion’s capabilities.

Tell a friend

When out exploring with others, it’s important to walk at the pace of the slowest person in your group. If you’d rather go alone, make sure to let someone know your plans before starting your journey. This should include your route, your start and finish points, estimated time of return and also any changes during your trip.

Wear the right gear

Choosing appropriate clothing for your activity is important when tackling the elements. Consider the right footwear, such as walking boots with ankle support, think about insulating layers, waterproofs and hats and gloves when facing challenging climbs, even in the summer.

Go equipped

A map and a compass is a good place to start and should be easily accessible if going on long walks or mountain climbs. Other useful items can include a watch, a torch with spare batteries and bulbs, a fully charged mobile phone, GPS and a whistle. This can be used to signal rescue with six good long blasts, stop for one minute, and then repeat until someone reaches you.

Keep your energy levels up

Before heading out, make sure you eat well. Carry food and plenty of drink to keep you hydrated and bring your energy levels up when needed. Chocolate and dried fruit are a great way to give you that quick boost.

Be vigilant

Be aware of your surroundings and changes in weather conditions. Keep an eye on any children and pets joining you on your trip and be prepared for the possibility of having to turn back on your journey if the weather deteriorates.

Know how to get help

Remember, if you find someone in trouble, don’t put yourself at risk. In an emergency, call the following for help:

Inland: 999 – ask for the police and then Mountain Rescue

Inland waters not categorised as 'sea': 999 – ask for Fire & Rescue Service

Coastal: 999 – ask for the Coastguard

Follow guidance

Check out the safety guidance that other organisations provide for setting out on many magnificent adventures across our beautiful country.

View of Powis Castle, perched above its terraced gardens, Powys, Wales, in autumn.

Discover more in Wales

A Celtic land with an industrial past steeped in myth, legend, poetry and song. Croeso i Gymru.

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