What makes an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (or AONB) a fantastic destination to visit? The answer may seem obvious - who wouldn't want to visit an area whose natural beauty is outstanding? But there's so much more to discover.
Not only do AONBs have some of the most spectacular and distinctive natural characteristics in the United Kingdom, these regions also offer insight to the heritage, wildlife and geology of the country. Home to no fewer than five AONBs, Wales is full of historical, ecological and geological wonders just waiting to be explored.
We're not going to spoil the surprises waiting for you by telling you everything there is to be found in these stunningly beautiful regions - you can't beat the joy of discovering these for yourself! But if you want to have your appetited whetted, take a look below at what makes each location so unique and why it might be the perfect spot to enjoy a break in 2017.
The picturesque region of Anglesey is home to a stretch of Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty from South Stack in the west to Puffin Island in the east. Take a captivating journey along the beautiful coastal path offering delightful heathland, mud flats teeming with wildlife and enchanting views out to sea. This area also captures the rich history of Wales with ancient burial mounds, grand Victorian bridges and the remains of a copper mine scattering the landscape. With its roots in a distant past and a stunning collection of natural wonders, Anglesey is a captivating place to explore whatever the season.
This exciting location may be famous for its sandy shorelines and great surf but it also boasts a range of fascinating ecological and archaeological sites. It’s an outdoors lovers dream with the striking landscape encompassing a range of scenery from rugged cliffs, long stretches of white sand and wooded valleys. The region offers a network of cycle routes, footpaths and charming spots to just sit and admire your surroundings, whilst soaking up Wales’ natural beauty and rich heritage.
Wye Valley AONB
From its enchanting wooded valley to its vibrant riverside havens, this Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty has enamoured artists, writers and poets for centuries. Not only does it offer the perfect inspiration and relaxing retreat, there are a fantastic variety of adventure to be had. For thrill seekers, why not try rock climbing or canoeing in the River Wye or for those that like a slower pace, wander the miles of trails exploring the regions heritage and natural beauty along the way.
Clwydian Range and Dee Valley AONB
Beautiful flora and lush emerald hillsides make up this stunning Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. There’s no better way to explore this spectacular destination than by foot or on bicycle and there are miles of routes and trails that offer plenty of variety on an outdoor adventure. Discover heritage sites along the way and admire the geological remains of hilltop defences and Denbigh Castle, described as Wales’ most picturesque castle.
Llŷn Peninsula AONB
The distinctive and unspoilt landscape nestled between the bracing Irish Sea and the beauty of Cardigan Bay offers another of the country’s Areas of Outstanding Beauty. The perfect way to explore the delights of the area include walking the Wales Coast Path taking you past secluded coves, pretty beaches, ancient forts and emerald pasturelands. To complete your adventure, hop on a boat and explore Bardsey Island, home to ancient monastery remains and a beautiful nature reserve where you may catch a glimpse of basking seals at the water’s edge.
Looking for the perfect base from which to explore on of Wales' Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty? Visit www.holidaycottages.co.uk/wales