Things to do on sunny days in Wales

The sun’s shining. Places like the Pembrokeshire coast are way sunnier than London (we get 1,700 hours of sunshine a year, compared with London’s 1,460). And we’ve got tons of things to on sunny days outdoors in Wales.

  • Windsurfing, Bala Lake
    Windsurfing on Bala Lake, Gwynedd, Snowdonia

    The largest natural lake in Wales is the ideal place to cool off on a sunny day. There’s a steam railway along the shores, and the full monty of watersports on the lake itself, whose 1km width makes it a favourite for sponsored swims.

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  • Woman holding baby and looking out over cliffs on Skomer Island
    Skomer Island

    Pembrokeshire’s offshore islands are bird sanctuaries of world importance, and a clifftop picnic on Skomer, among the wild flowers, with thousands of sea birds wheeling overhead, while seals bask on the rocks below, is a fabulous experience. 

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  • Monmouthshire and Brecon Canal, Talybont-on-Usk
    Monmouthshire and Brecon Canal, Talybont-on-Usk

    The impossibly pretty Monmouthshire & Brecon canal runs for 35 miles along the edge of the Brecon Beacons. There are several boat hire fleets along the way, from which you can hire a day boat or canoe and enjoy a memorable potter (at a top speed of 4mph…).

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  • Boy cycling through woods at Coed y Brenin mountain bike centre
    Coed y Brenin Mountain Biking Centre, Snowdonia

    The mountain biking in Wales is world-class, and here’s where it all started, in the wooded hills of Snowdonia. You don’t have to be a Lycra-clad warrior to enjoy it, though: there are easy trails that are specifically designed for families and beginners to make a gentle start. 

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  • Red Kite, Gigrin, Powys
    Red Kite, Gigrin Farm, Brecon Beacons

    The red kite is now so common over Mid Wales that they’re a constant presence in the skies. But seeing them en masse – several hundred at a time, at a kite-feeding centre like Gigrin Farm - is still one of the most awesome sights that British nature has to offer. 

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  • Georgian mansion and lawns at Dyffryn Gardens
    Dyffryn Gardens, Glamorgan by fillbee

    For a good run-around and a picnic in glorious garden surroundings, Dyffryn Gardens is hard to beat. The National Trust’s newest Welsh acquisition has gardens and an arboretum with just the right kind of nooks, hidey-holes and water features that children love. 

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  • National Botanic Garden
    National Botanic Garden, Carmarthenshire

    The huge greenhouse at the Garden’s heart looks like a spaceship has crashed into the Towy Valley, and there are always events to appeal to kids: Pond Dipping Mondays, Going Green Tuesdays, Time Travelling Wednesdays, Creepy Crawly Thursdays … you get the picture. It’s stunningly beautiful, too.  

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  • Skiing at Pembrey Country Park
    Skiing at Pembrey Country Park, Carmarthenshire

    The sun’s out, so let’s go skiing. Makes sense, right?  The slope at Pembrey Country Park is one of many things to do on a sunny day, including crazy golf, train rides, adventure play, horse riding, nature trails and a whopping eight-mile dune-backed beach. 

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  • Powis Castle and statue
    Powis Castle, Mid Wales

    Quite apart from the classy stately-home-and-garden thing, the National Trust has devised lots of child-friendly activities here: wilderness walks, ranger trails, treasure hunts, and games on the croquet lawn. Rolling down the grassy slopes, while saying ‘Wheee!’, is also strongly encouraged. 

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  • Aerial view of Snowdon Mountain Railway.
    Snowdon Mountain Railway, Gwynedd, Snowdonia  by Alex Meacock, Camera Drone UK

    Heading along two major viaducts via a waterfall and an ancient forest, this journey to the peak of Snowdon takes on volcanic rock and sea, ending at a visitor centre with marvellous views across Snowdonia. Exorcise the ghosts of run-of-the-mill train trips on one of the most spectacular journeys you’ll take.

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