Best Dark Sky Locations in North Snowdonia

As you may have gathered, we’re keen fans of a bit of the night photography at Mud and Routes, so we’re thrilled to hear that the Snowdonia National Park has been awarded the Dark Sky Reserve Status for the national park under the “Seeing Stars” campaign. Not a minute too soon we think!

Snowdonia is one of the best spots south of the Highlands for dark skies, but it’s always good for business for it to achieve acknowledgement and the resulting tourism this will bring.

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Some of the spots we’ve tried out in Snowdonia are on the map below, though mainly in the North where there’s more light pollution than further south. Get wild camping, and the skies are even better. All we need now are some clear nights.

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1 – Cwm Idwal – Absolutely cracking location! This image was taken under perfect conditions with a new moon, but unfortunately the lens wasn’t well suited to the camera!

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2 – Llanberis

Even here, you can still get some impressive shots, but the light pollution of Caernarfon and nearby are clearly evident. Sodium lighting from the Electric Mountain is also problematic here.

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3 – Nantgwynant 

Even from the layby between Nant Gwynant and Pen y Gwryd, you can still get impressive results without too much effort.

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 4 – Rhyd Ddu – Another easily accessible spot, with some light pollution from the Penygroes area.

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5 – Bwlch Cwm Llan – Getting into the mountains is always a better option! There was just too much moon this night, so we decided to create some light pollution of our own! Pretty certain there’s a light at the summit on this shot, or it’s reflected moonlight?

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6 – Foryd, near Caernarfon.

Not quite in the park, but close enough! The lights of Caernarfon are apparent in the first, while Caernarfon Airport in Dinas Dinlle is seen affecting the second.startrails_foryds- startrails_foryds-0991

Dave Roberts

Dave Roberts founded Walk Eryri in 2004, with the aim of providing routes that are off the beaten track. Walk Eryri is now part of Mud and Routes which continues to provide more off beat routes and walks in Snowdonia and beyond. Dave has been exploring the hills of Eryri for over thirty years, and is a qualified Mountain Leader.
Dave also established Walk up Snowdon, Walk up Scafell Pike and Walk up Ben Nevis just to mention a few.

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