Monday, 20 January 2020

2020 – The Year of the Outdoors

View from Snowdonia

Visit Wales has announced 2020 as being the ‘Year of the Outdoors’. This theme, promoting the valuable tourism in Wales, aims to focus on the exceptional outdoor activities, environment, and wellbeing associated with the country.


The Year of the Outdoors 2020 follows last years ‘Year of the Discovery’. This exciting campaign was successful in celebrating Wales as an adventure paradise – and how there is so much to discover in North Wales alone! The tallest mountain in Wales ‘Snowdon’ in the Snowdonia National Park, the beautiful beaches of Anglesey, and the cute towns on the Llyn Peninsula – just to name a few.


Anyway – back to the Year of the Outdoors, this year focus’ on the awe inspiring views, the stunning coastline, our bountiful wildlife, and countless outdoor adventures and fun! Let’s take a closer look.


Starting with the precious landscape, Wales has 3 National Parks to be explored. The Brecon Beacons, Pembrokeshire Coast, and Snowdonia. These cover 20% of Wales, protecting the environment, wildlife, heritage, and local villages. On top of this Wales has five Areas of Outstanding National Beauty to enjoy – The Clwydian Range, Anglesey, and the Llyn Peninsula in the North, the Wye Valley running down from Mid Wales to the very south and Gower Peninsula in the South.


View of Tryfan


That’s not all… the Welsh coast has a catalogue of popular award winning beaches being praised for their fantastic amenities, cleanliness and safety. These include beaches in Barmouth, Pembrokeshire, Porthcawl, and Anglesey – the list goes on. But that’s not all the Welsh coastline has to offer, it’s also the first country in the world with a footpath which follows the entirety of the coast – a remarkable 870 miles.


Nicknamed ‘the Land of Castles’, Wales is known for its 600 castles – that more per square mile than anywhere else in the world. This can only prove the vast amount of interesting heritage and fascinating history the land has to offer. Some of the most famous include the castles in Conwy, Cardiff, Beaumaris, Harlech, and Caernarfon.


Conwy Castle


Wales has an amazing amount of wildlife to appreciate. The sea is home to dolphins and porpoises, which are most commonly seen around Anglesey and Cardigan Bay, Seals, that can be found in Pembrokeshire and parts of the North, and not forgetting the exquisite sea birds spotted around the coastline. In land, thanks to our woodlands and forests, we can find numerous birds of prey such as the Red Kite and Kestrels.


The Year of the Outdoors also celebrates the adventures, activities and outdoor enthusiasts in Wales. It’s the perfect place to go wild swimming, cycling, surfing, and walking. If you’re looking for a thrill, there’s Zip World in Bethesda with Velocity 2 – the fastest zipline in the world or Adventure Park Snowdonia in Dolgarrog, with ‘Surf Snowdonia’ an in land surf lagoon and ‘Adrenaline Indoors’ an indoor adventure facility. Adventure can be found whatever the weather or whatever the tide!


Man surfing


In Snowdonia alone there are around 250 lakes, 14 peaks over 3000ft, and countless beaches neighbouring the National Park, just a short drive from the Black Boy Inn.