We had a bit over 3 weeks in Wales during the spring of 2018 and it was great. I believe it is one of the best destinations in the UK, so keep on scrolling to find out more about having the best holidays in Wales for families with kids.
I believe it’s an incredible country for short breaks. In Wales, for families with kids, there is just so much to see and do, I wonder why it’s so much less touristic than the surrounding places!
Family friendly place to stay in Wales
We had 2 houses in Wales and they were both lovely. They were both rented through Airbnb and if you’re new to it, click here to grab a discount on your first booking!
Where to stay in South Wales with kids
There isn’t much in Whitland to do, but around 30 minutes away, you could find everything. In the city, there was a small supermarket (Coop), and a few little shops, which was great. We managed to see the real, non-touristic Wales, and we had fun, we rested, and we managed quite a few day-trips through our stay.
This is the house we rented – it’s a warm and pretty house, very well kept and it had everything we could need, even a pool table, which the kids loved. It’s right by the train station, so a little noise here and there but we really liked it.
For Pokemon Go players, I could reach 2 gyms in the house.
We recommend it for those driving – if you’re using public transportation, then it’s a no.
Where to stay in North Wales with kids
We spent our time in North Wales in Rhyl. It’s a beach holiday town, so not much happens unless it’s a weekend or a holiday. We were lucky to be there for 2 weekends and it was a lot of fun.
It was this house, which is very beautiful, comfortable, and well stocked. We just had problems with the internet and the vacuum cleaner, which weren’t working at all. Other than that, it was a great place, and we managed to fit in quite a lot of day-trips, including Liverpool (well, The Beatles!), Cheshire, and Llandudno (Alive in Wonderland!).
Things to do in Wales for families
There are so many things to do in Wales, I’ll divide as much as I can here. Scroll to know it all!
Things to do in Cardiff Wales with kids
Cardiff is the capital, and we’ll start with it. It’s in South Wales.
Unfortunately, it was a long drive (2~3 hours away) from our base and on one day, we got stuck for over an hour in traffic due to roadworks. We got to Cardiff at around 4:00 pm and after 30 minutes, every little thing was closed. We managed to see nothing but the streets.
On the second time, we managed to arrive earlier BUT it was raining heavily and we kind of gave up.
But anyway, I’ll talk about all the things we did and didn’t do here.
It’s close to the castle so we paid it a visit. It has a few interesting food stalls, a vintage vinyl disc shop, a pet shop, and many dollar store kind of places. It’s a nice place to grab a bite, but other than that…
We only visited this because we couldn’t see the Falcons in Ireland and our kid #2 is a huge falcon and eagle geek. Well, the flying time is fun, and we got to see the cute owl very close BUT the birds are caged AND tied. They didn’t look very happy – I wouldn’t go back there.
Entry costs £16 per family.
We actually stopped there to watch the sunset and for the loo but the loo was closed and it was too cold to stay by the lake to see the sunset. And it wasn’t a very nice place, as the trees covered the horizon anyway.
But it’s a pretty place. It should be better on a nice and warm day, though.
This museum is pretty cool. We thought it’d be a regular museum, but no. It’s a complete village, with houses, flour mill, bakery, tea shop, a castle, and so much more!
We really enjoyed our time there. We saw the flour mill working, talked to the people in the houses, bought some vintage candies, walked around through the forest, entered many different houses, and more. It was fun.
Plan for at least a couple of hours there, because it’s big!
Entry is free.
Cardiff is filled with fun – too bad we only had a short time there! ___________ Cardiff é uma cidade cheia de coisas divertidas! Uma pena que a gente teve pouco tempo por lá! . . . #worldtripdiaries #travel #travelblog #travelblogger #travelphoto #travelphotography #travelpic #worldcaptures #travelfamily #familytravel #travelwithkids #kidstravel #instatravel #instapassport #travelgram #traveltheworld #worldtravel #iphonephoto #iphonephotography #iphonepic #uk #wales #paisdegales #reinounido #cardiff
This is one of the things we really wanted to do but we arrived on the days it was closed. Bad luck (and some lack of research, ha).
It’s a very interactive Science museum, and it’s supposed to be AMAZING.
Make sure you check the website before you go.
Things to do in Swansea Wales
We visited Swansea a few times because… Five Guys (a fast food chain, haha!). Swansea is a big city and it’s a very cool one in South Wales. There’s a lot to see and do there but we really didn’t manage much because we were lucky: it was always raining. And it was very cold, so, you know…
We wandered around downtown on two different days but we never managed to get there early enough to see everything open and working. Once we just left home late and it was all our fault but the second time, we got one horrible traffic and we were stuck for so long that, well, that was it.
It’s still fun, and pretty, and very UK-y.
Museums are the salvation, one of the only free things to do in Wales when it’s raining. This one isn’t very big, but it gives a lovely view of the town and it’s pretty cool. My kids had lots of fun reading about the pirates and playing on the interactive exhibits.
The exhibit about the metals is very neat and we spent quite some time wandering around there.
What to do in Pembroke
Pembrokeshire (Freshwater West Beach) – Wales for Harry Potter fans
We heard that Dobby’s grave and the cottage Bill and Fleur lived in was there so, of course, we had to go see it.
When you hear that Dobby’s (the house elf from Harry Potter) grave is in Wales and you go see it but… it’s been taken down a while ago… all you can do is enjoy the sun and the beach. ________ Quando você descobre que o local aonde Dobby (o elfo da série Harry Potter) foi enterrado fica no País de Gales, você vai procurar. Mas, infelizmente, não está mais lá. Tudo o que resta é aproveitar o sol e a praia. . . . #worldtripdiaries #travel #travelblog #travelblogger #travelphoto #travelphotography #travelpic #worldcaptures #travelfamily #familytravel #travelwithkids #kidstravel #instatravel #instapassport #travelgram #traveltheworld #worldtravel #iphonephoto #iphonephotography #iphonepic #uk #wales #paisdegales #reinounido #harrypotter #penbroke
Unfortunately, it ISN’T there anymore.
But the beach is lovely, the sand dunes were huge fun, and even though it was full of litter, we liked it. It’s not for swimming, due to the strong currents.
It was a great moment to pick up a few plastic items and dispose of them correctly.
Rhossili and South Gower Coast (Wormhead)
We decided to drive down to Wormhead since we had nothing left to do in Swansea, and it was very worth it. The sun started shining and we had the loveliest walk in midst of green cliffs, beautiful sea, and the cutest jumpy lambs in the universe. You’ll walk around 20 minutes from the carpark to reach the edge of the cliff, where you can (in low tide) cross to the islands. When we were there, it was high tide already but it was still very, very pretty. Visit it during spring to enjoy the baby lamb making noises and running around, but go prepared to step on a lot of sheep poo. It was unavoidable.
If you have small kids, you’ll need to watch them carefully because it’s a cliff and it’s filled with adorable sheep – they may call for your kid or your kid may startle them and they can attack.
Things to do in Rhyl Wales
Rhyl is a town in North Wales.
To be really, really honest, there isn’t much there except for the beach. During the week, the city is almost dead but on sunny weekends, it’s alive. The markets are running, the amusement parks are open, and you’ll be able to eat out!
We were there between April and March – we had some really nice weather (still not warm enough for a swim – for us, at least), but we had fun at the amusement parks and just by watching people.
The rides aren’t free, but they’re fun anyway. If you’re there, ride at least the bumper cars because who doesn’t like it?
The biggest Ice Cream Shop in the world! – a perfect day trip from Wales!
In Cheshire, you’ll find the Ice Cream Farm, which is, apparently, the biggest ice cream shop in the world. Well, it’s pretty big – but not the ice cream shop itself. It’s because they have a small farm, some quad bikes, a pretty neat playground, and a lot more there.
Even though it’s not in Wales, this is one of the must-visit places in North Wales with kids!
The ice cream is actually pretty good and the entry to the place is free. You can have a tour through the ice cream factory or ride a donkey, a quad bike, but they are charged. The playground is free so it’s always very full. I recommend a stop there once but go before closing time so the kids have the chance to enjoy the playground.
Liverpool (England), because… The Beatles!
Well, nobody – seriously – in my family likes them besides me so we skipped the museum (well, £60 entry to have every single person bored to death and annoying me wouldn’t be fun anyway), but we walked around the beautiful Maritime Mercantile City, which is a World Heritage Site. One of the candy shops there has some fun Jelly Bean art – they were very cool. Other than that, it was a very very chilly and rainy day and we didn’t get to enjoy much. And most of the things were closed, which is very sad – but it was a Wednesday afternoon.
It IS in England rather than Wales, but it’s very, very close by!
Llandudno, or Wonderland
The only day trip within Wales was Llandudno. We didn’t, but we found out (when we were there) that this is the place where the real Alice (the girl who inspired Alice in Wonderland) used to spend her summers there. There’s a thing called Alice Trail that takes you from the beach to a park with many statues and cute Alice themed things.
On the way, we enjoyed our time at the Happy Valley and the Pier, with lots of people, ice cream stalls, a carousel, and some other fun stuff. It was a lovely sunny day, and we LOVED it!
Just make sure you visit it on a weekend, otherwise, it’s probably gonna be closed.
Downtown Llandudno is very pretty, a lot of colonial style buildings, colorful, neat, and lovely. Take your time to walk around, it’s fun.
There’s a cable car that takes you from the park to the top of the mountain, but you can also drive there. We chose to drive since we had our car there and it was very worth it. The views are incredible and there are some rock formations that are unbelievable.
We drove all the way up, had a cup of coffee, and rove down, but you could, I suppose, spend a whole day around.
(It’s a toll road, so you should pay. We tried, but the person had already left when we were there so we were told to just go.)
Things to do in Snowdonia Wales
We really wanted to spend more time in Snowdonia but didn’t ever manage to get back there. We stopped once when we were going from South Wales to North Wales.
Apparently, there is a lot to do in the area, from zip lining to train rides through the lovely scenery. You can even try out some water sports if it’s warm enough (or if you’re brave).
It is a breathtaking scenery, with mountains and valleys, and it certainly deserves a visit.
We only stopped at Corris Craft Centre, though, because we were tired, it was raining, and we had all our things with us.
We had lunch in the café there – and the food is very good, albeit expensive.
And we visited the Labyrinth in the caves.
This is basically a guided tour through the caves to learn about the legend of King Arthur. It’s dark, includes a short boat trip, and we found it pretty amusing.
You can’t really wander around the caves, but you follow a guide and hear the stories through recorded voices and some figures.
The kids enjoyed wearing the hard hats and wandering around the dark caves, but they were a bit scared at first.
It was only the 6 of us + a family of 5, so it was fine, but I believe it can get a lot more crowded because the boat was very empty.
If you go there, make sure you wear warm clothing and nonslippery shoes.
Castles in Wales
Caernarfon Castle is enormous, and the castle itself and the walls surround it are a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We were really tired of castles by then, as it was the last one we visited, but it’s very worth the visit. The castle and the town surrounding it are stunning.
We had lots of fun climbing all the towers (and it was a great exercise) and the kids had fun doing the Scavenger Hunt game and at the end of it, they received a sheet of stickers each.
It’s a very well kept castle, with so many cool exhibits and even short movies with the story of the castle.
It’s in Caernarfon, North Wales, and it’s definitely one of the best places to go in Wales with kids.
Entry costs £27.50 for a family of 5.
We didn’t enter this castle because the kids were too bored for yet another castle – the joys of traveling with kids – but it’s enormous! We drove around it and it’s HUGE!
I wish we’d visited it. They recommend at least 2 hours for a visit, but I think it’d take a lot longer unless more than half of it is closed.
It’s in Pembroke, South Wales.
Entry costs £6 per adult and £5 per child (between 3 and 15). Kids under 3 enter for free.
Both times, we didn’t see the Castle from the inside but it looks huge and stunning. We wanted to visit it, because it’s incredibly well preserved, and it should be a full day out.
Entrance costs £38 per family of 4 and an extra of £9.80 (per family) if you wish for a guided tour of the decorated rooms of the castle. It’s in Cardiff.
This is a smaller castle but it’s a great one. It’s pretty, with some nice rooms with medieval times games and info, and even a bat hotel (seriously). It’s also small enough to have the kids enjoy the whole thing.
Mostly in ruins, and better on a sunny day for sure. It’s in Carew, South Wales.
Entry costs £15 per family of 4.
Other Things to do in Wales with kids
Wales is an incredibly child-friendly and family-friendly country. It’s a little bit weird that we haven’t heard more of it!
It’s the country of King Arthur and Merlin, it’s full of – explorable – caves, friendly people, castles, churches, museums, wonderful parks (including some incredible national parks), stunning roads, lovely beaches and just so much more!
To finish it…
We loved it!
It was a lot like NZ’s South Island and the kids complained a lot about the smell. Well, we decided to stay in rural areas, which means more cattle, which, in turns, means more smell.
But we had lots of fun and the weather was getting better, which was great.
It’s a small country that’s easily explored in a couple of weeks, and it should be on everyone’s UK itinerary, for real!
- City / Country
- Minimun Stay
- $ ~ $$$
- Best local transport option
- Do we recommend it?
- Wales / UK
- A week
- Super child friendly!
- Absolutely safe
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