2016 is Named the Year of Adventure in Wales
From sky to sea there’s a journey waiting in Wales; that’s why the Welsh Government has named 2016 the country’s Year of Adventure. With the recent development of unique attractions, Wales is positioning itself as the world’s adventure capital. And, it’s not just the new sites that will leave travelers’ hearts pounding – the country’s natural landscapes were made to explore. According to The Miller Report, a research project commissioned by Visit Wales and the Wales Activity Tourism Organisation (WATO), outdoor-activity tourism in Wales is a vital part of the Welsh economy, worth about $730 million.
Ken Skates, the Deputy Minister for Culture, Sport and Tourism in Wales says of the announcement, “This launch signals a huge ambition to promote Wales as the home of adventure in 2016.” He added, “For the year of adventure in 2016 we’re going to work with partners to make sure that anyone who wants to can experience adventure in our fantastic landscapes and environment.”
Whether extreme sports or country walks there’s an experience for every skill level. Below are 10 activities in Wales for adventurous travelers.
1) Coasteering: Try coasteering in the country where it was invented. This sport requires swimming, jumping, and scrambling along the rocky coast of Wales. The plunging cliffs of Pembrokeshire Coast National Park are renowned for coasteering, but travelers can also visit the Llyn and Gower Peninsulas – both Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
2) Climbing Mount Snowdon: Hike to the highest peak in Wales: Mount Snowdon. Located in the core of Snowdonia National Park, this mountain’s rigorous terrain would prove a challenge to even the most seasoned hikers. Sir Edmund Hillary used Snowdon to train for his landmark ascent of Mount Everest.
3) Walking the Wales Coast Path: In 2012 the Wales Coast Path opened making Wales the only country in the world with a completely walkable coastline. This 870-mile trail stretches from Chepstow in the South to Queensferry in the North and passes though Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the award-winning Pembrokeshire Coast, and the ancient Isle of Anglesey.
4) Surf Snowdonia: Beginning this summer, travelers can hang ten at Surf Snowdonia – the world’s first inland Wavegarden located in the heart of Snowdonia. This one-of-a-kind attraction is surrounded by forest and greenery without an ocean in sight.
5) Bounce Below: Jump around at the world’s first-ever underground trampoline park: Bounce Below. The attraction opened in 2014 in an old slate cavern and features over 60 miles of “bouncy” nets. Travelers over the age of 7 can take part in the experience and children between the ages of 3 and 6 can now hop to Junior Bounce, the company’s latest development for young adventurers.
6) Zip World: Wales is home to the world’s fastest zip line at Zip World Snowdonia; soar through the sky at speeds of up to 100 miles per hour on Zip World Velocity. Take in views of the surrounding national park and the distant Isle of Anglesey.
7) Walking the Offa’s Dyke Path: In the 8th century, King Offa ordered the construction of a dyke to separate his kingdom from neighboring kingdoms in Wales. Today, the Offa’s Dyke Path welcomes walkers to traverse the boarder of the two countries on this 177-mile trail. The path connects with the Wales Coast Path making it possible to walk the entire perimeter of Wales.
8) Cardiff White Water: This action-packed white water rafting experience is located in the capital of Wales, Cardiff. Visitors can spend the day at Cardiff White Water before visiting the city’s revitalized waterfront at Cardiff Bay for shops, dining, and entertainment.
9) Mountain Biking: Ride through plush countryside at Coed-y-Brenin in Snowdonia – an award-winning spot for mountain biking in Wales. In 2012, Lonely Planet named biking in the region among the best adventures in the world.
10) Food Foraging: Foodies can explore the Welsh countryside while searching for fresh produce on a foraging excursion. Hunt for blackberries, mushrooms, nuts and even edible seaweed!
Visit Wales is the New York-based government tourism office for Wales, one of four countries that make up the United Kingdom. A land with 641 castles, 870 miles of walkable coastline, three national parks and award-winning cuisine, Wales offers travelers a variety of activities and different landscapes to explore. The country's Celtic history and ancient language make it a distinctive British destination.
For more information on Wales travel, trade can visit www.trade.visitwales.com and consumers can visit www.visitwales.com/americas.
SOURCE: Visit Wales press release
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