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5 days in Wales

Looking at a surprise trip for the husbands birthday. If we only have 5 days on the ground would Wales be a decent short getaway? Any suggestions for itinerary?

Posted by
4509 posts

My surname is Welsh and in 2017 we visited South Wales and the village in Cardiganshire north of St. David that my ancestor left in 1716 with his two brothers to come to America.

South and North Wales are both amazing. For South Wales, I recommend a couple of days in Cardiff. Cardiff Castle, the Museum of Welsh Life and Caerfully Castle (a short train ride from Cardiff) are great. There are several castles near Cardiff as well as Tintern Abbey close to the English border.

Tenby, Wales is wonderful. We stayed there and on our way to St. Davids, we visited Pembroke Castle. There are some very scenic places in S. Wales.
In North Wales, Conwy and its castle are a must see. Snowdonia National Park is great. Caernarfon Castle is another you would likely want to see.

Posted by
6013 posts

Whether it would be a decent short get away for you depends on what you and your husband are interested in doing and when you plan to come. Can you give us some more information?

You can certainly get a taste of the country in 5 days, but I suggest focusing on either the north or south of the country.
Lots to see in the north if you enjoy history and scenary. Combine it with a visit to Chester and/or Liverpool for a change of pace.
Fly into Manchester Airport and it's a relatively shot hop on the train into North Wales.
Hiring a car would make moving around the area between sights easier but for 5 days its certainly doable on public transport.

But as i said, let us know what you are interested in and we can give you more specific and useful advice.

Posted by
2869 posts

As Emma stated, it’s what you like to do and whether you’ll have a car or using public transportation.

Posted by
215 posts


We would be renting a car. We are well versed in driving on the wrong side if we had too. I would consider ourselves foodies that love history and scenery. We have enjoyed castles, waterfalls, villas and botanical gardens in a few different countries. Prefer to roam freely and do not like guided tours. Oh yeah we love animals.....did I mention we are animal lovers. Hoping to fly into Manchester from Miami or Orlando and have 5 full days on the ground.

Posted by
6013 posts

I see you have also posted a similar question on the England forum but I think for the short time you have North Wales fits the bill.
It might cost more to fly in Manchester but accommodation and general living expenses will be cheaper in the north than the south of the country.
North Wales has lots of castles in a relatively small area Conwy, Beaumaris, Caernavon, Criccieth, Flint etc. The scenery of Snowdonia is spectacular including a number of waterfalls. For gardens you have Bodnant and Portmeirion.

If you fly into Manchester, I would take the train to Chester for your first night. Its a very pretty, walkable Roman/Medieval city with lots of history. It's got quite a good food scene these days with a few restaurants with very good reputations. As animal lovers if you don't mind a zoo, Chester Zoo is world renowned. It would be a good place to get over jet lag. You could then pick up a car in Chester or catch the train into North Wales and get a car at Llandudno junction.

On your other post you say you plan to travel in August/September. September will be slightly quieter than August but its still peak season and busy. Avoid the last week of August because the last Monday is a public holiday and always busy.

Posted by
36 posts

HI there! Without knowing what time of year you are going - and knowing you are foodies - I'd suggest Cardiff as well with trips out to surrounding areas for day trips. There are SO many great places to eat in Cardiff, plus you are near the coast with small villages and castles around to include in the trip. It sounds like from other comments you may also be visiting England and Cardiff is close to the England/Wales border.