Snowdonia National Park

Stargaze and admire the night sky from the mountains and foothills of Snowdonia

Snowdonia Overview

  • Snowdonia Overview

  • Coverage: Across North West and Mid West Wales
  • Size: 2,132 sqm
  • Highest point: Snowdon 1085m
  • Stargazing hotspot: Llyn y Dywarchen
  • Best time for stargazing: September to March

Snowdonia National Park is the second area in Wales to be designated as an International Dark Sky Reserve. There are just eleven of these magical reserves in the world, and on a clear night in Snowdonia you can see the Milky Way, all the major constellations, nebulas (bright clouds of gas and dust) and shooting stars.

Having being designated with such a prestigious title, we now hope not only protect the environment and enhance the biodiversity and dark skies of the area, but we will go a step further than other designations in the world by raising awareness of the features that link the stars of our culture, from the Mabinogi to the old penillion.

Our journey of discovering and appreciating the stars has only started, and we wish to work alongside local communities in maintaining the quality of dark skies we have in Snowdonia.
The opportunities to stargaze and admire the night sky from the mountains and foothills of Snowdonia are abundant …….. Why not come experience our dark skies for yourself?

Best stargazing sites

Want to make the most of Snowdonia National Park’s amazing dark skies? Here are some of the best places to see the stars.

Llyn y Dywarchen

Llyn y Dywarchen is located above the village of Drws y Coed in Dyffryn Nantlle, near Rhyd Ddu. It is a very popular fishing lake, and has a car park nearby.

Useful Information

  • Parking: Up to 6 vehicles
  • Nearest phone: Rhyd-Ddu (SH 569 529), 1 mile
  • Facilities: None on site

Llyn Geirionnydd

This is a very popular lake in the Gwydir Forest above Betws y Coed. During the summer months it is popular with picnickers as well as those who take part in water sport activities, as this is the only lake in Snowdonia where power boats and water skiing are permitted. There’s a car park on the lake’s shore, and public conveniences available during the summer.

Useful Information

  • Parking: Public car park
  • Nearest phone: Nant Bwlch yr Haearn (SH 778 593), 2 miles.
  • Facilities: Public toilets, picnic benches.

Llynnau Cregennen

Llynnau Cregennen are two of the most popular lakes in south Merionethshire. They lie on the foothills of Cader Idris, overlooked by the crags of Tyrrau Mawr to the south east, and Pared y Cefn Hir to the north. There is a car park and public conveniences near the largest lake, and fishing is allowed provided that you are in possession of the appropriate permits.

Useful Information

  • Parking: Public car park
  • Nearest phone: Arthog (SH 640 143), 2 miles
  • Facilities: Public toilets only open during the day.

Tŷ Cipar, y Migneint

Tŷ Cipar is a former Gamekeeper’s house. It is located between Llan Ffestiniog and Ysbyty Ifan, within the Special Protected Area of Migneint and Arenig Dduallt. It is one of the largest areas of blanket bog in Wales, and birds such as the Hen Harrier, Peregrine and Merlin can be spotted here.

Useful Information

  • Parking: Up to 4 vehicles
  • Nearest phone: Cwm Penmachno (SH 767 478), 2 miles
  • Facilities: None on site

Bwlch y Groes

Bwlch y Groes lies on the minor road linking Dinas Mawddwy and Llanuwchllyn, and is one of the highest tarmacked passes in Wales. The view from the pass encompasses the plain of the Dyfi valley, Cader Idris and Aran Fawddwy, and the Berwyn Mountains to the north-east.

Useful Information

  • Parking: Up to 10 vehicles
  • Nearest phone: Llanymawddwy (SH 902 189), 2 miles
  • Facilities: None on site

Dark Skies Actvities

The amazing dark skies of the National Parks provide wonderful night sky viewing opportunities for stars, planets and the moon all year.

sCamping Under the Stars

Find a campsite tucked away in the countryside far from the bright city lights, and embrace the wonder of the dark.

ITrain Rides

Starward bound on the night train - it’s where the stories begin.

QMountain Biking

Experience a whole new adventure in the dark. This is when tracks and paths offer new challenges, as moon beams light your way.

LBadger Watching

Experience the amazing sight of badgers emerging into the dusk from their setts, foraging for food and playing in the moonlight.

Dark Sky Reserves

Build your unique 24/7 holiday. Discover epic dusk till dawn adventures in the tranquillity, splendour and seclusion of the wonderful landscapes of Wales.

Pembrokeshire

Pembrokeshire Coast

Pembrokeshire Coast National Park has a necklace of dark sky discovery sites. Pembrokeshire’s wild and rugged coast and countryside benefits from some of the best dark sky opportunities in the country, where it is possible to observe the spectacle of the Milky Way or the constellations such as Orion with the naked eye.

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Brecon

Brecon Beacons

The Brecon Beacons National Park was the first area in Wales to be awarded International Dark Sky status. Stretching from the English border to the wilds of Carmarthenshire and from the South Wales Valleys to the wilderness of Mid Wales, our beautiful and varied landscape has many opportunities to witness some of the darkest skies in the UK.

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