There are many walks from Betws-y-coed, not surprising considering the number of lakes near Betws-y-coed. Nestling in the Gwydr Forest, walks are usually either through the trees, a river walk or involve a lake or two. More often than not, you’ll get the lot!
Betws-y-coed (only pronounced ‘betsy’ if you want to aggravate the locals) is the main tourist honeypot for North Snowdonia, along with Beddgelert and Llanberis. It’s certainly the place to go for outdoor shopping as none of the other villages or even towns in Snowdonia and North Wales can compete with the number of specialist shops. It is to outdoor kit what Hay-on-wye is to books.
So other than dallying on the bridge, eating chips and blocking traffic, what else is there to do? While the shopping is one thing, there’s also the option of actually going for a walk and even a bit of mountain biking. Yes, we suggest you get that shiny new outdoor kit muddy!
So what walks are nearby?
Easy 6km walk.
This trip starts off a short distance from Betws-y-Coed, and you could easily walk to the start from the village if you fancied a slightly longer walk. The walk is mainly through forestry and passes a couple of lakes, and mine ruins that provide some interest. Easy walk, but the navigation in the plantation can be a headache. You can follow this route to Llyn Parc from Betws y Coed for a direct, but longer walk.
Easy 7km walk.
This walk takes us into the forest to the south of the village towards the picturesque Llyn Elsi. It sets off steeply, but levels out after the initial climb. The route returns via the Clogwyn y Gigfran Trail that’s a maintained an waymarked trail
Easy 7km walk.
A straightforward exploration of the countryside near the village without venturing much more than a couple of kilometres from the village centre. The Miner’s Bridge below is one of the highlights.
Easy Moderate 9km Walk.
This may start a few kilometres out of the village, but again you can easily start the walk from the far end of the village (Capel Curig End) if you choose. Not only do you get a better view of the Swallow Falls from this side of the river, you don’t have to pay either!
If you want a tougher walk, why not try walking the Sarn Helen Walk, but starting from Betws instead of Capel? That’ll get your legs working. Failing that you can always go a bit further afield on the Sherpa (or car if you must) and scale Moel Siabod or any of the other Walks from Capel Curig or Walks From Pen-y-pass. You can also take the Sherpa to Ogwen, Beddgelert or Rhyd Ddu for even more walking options.
Mountain Biking Near Betws-y-coed
Mountain bikers are also very well catered for. You can choose to pootle along the infinite loops of forestry tracks, or tackle one of two world class MTB trails nearby. The Marin Trail is just a few kilometres north, and you can easily cycle to the start, while the same goes for the Penmachno Trail to the south, though this does involve a short section on the A470 if you feel brave.