8 Reasons Why You Should Never Go to Wales

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When most people (and especially most Americans) plan their first trip to the UK, a handful of destinations usually end up on their itinerary: London, Stonehenge, maybe Oxford, Edinburgh, the Scottish Highlands, and perhaps a hop over to Dublin since it's so close.

I don't know of very many people who add Wales to their first UK itinerary.

In fact, it took me more than five visits to Britain before I finally spent any mentionable amount of time in Wales. Everyone knows about London, and Scotland does a great job of marketing itself to tourists. Wales, on the other hand, largely gets overlooked.

But I get it. Because there are so many reasons why you should never go to Wales.

First, watch this video from Wales:

Why you should never visit Wales*

Reasons why you should probably never plan a trip to Wales include…

1. Castles, castles, castles

Caernarfon Castle and harbour at sunset
Caernarfon Castle at sunset

Wales has a ridiculous number of castles – over 600 of them, in fact, which leads many people to call the country the “castle capital of the world.” That seems a bit excessive, doesn't it? I mean, does a small country like Wales really need THAT many castles?

Many of them are in ruins now, and a few are UNESCO World Heritage sites. Seems like a lot of upkeep, if you ask me.

Conwy, Wales at dusk
An adorable street with a castle at the end? Are you for real, Wales??

And, really, who wants to drive around and see a castle on nearly every hilltop? Doesn't that get old after a while?

2. All the legends

Wales has a lot of legends associated with it and its history, from dragons to magic swords to holy drinking vessels.

The legend of Merlin, for example, was based on the Welsh legends of the wizard Myrddin Wyllt, and many historians argue that King Arthur isn't a myth at all, but instead a real figure from Welsh history (though perhaps not actually a king). There's the mystery surrounding the Nanteos Cup, too, which many believe to be THE Holy Grail.

But c'mon, Wales. No need to be putting fairy tales in peoples heads.

Bridge in Betws-y-Coed, Wales
Yet another fairytale-like spot in Wales.

3. Old language

Go home, Wales: your language is drunk.

The Welsh language is an old one – it dates back thousands of years, in fact, and is likely the oldest language in Britain. And yet the language has changed little despite so many millennia passing. It's still ridiculously difficult to speak (well, for us non-Welsh, at least), and don't even bother trying to read signs in Welsh. It's just futile.

This is seriously a place name in Wales:

Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch train station

It means “The Church of Mary in the hollow of the white hazel near the fierce whirlpool and the Church of Tysilio by the red cave.”

Yes. For real. It's one of the longest place names in the world.

If the place names aren't silly enough, Tolkien also based one of his versions of the Elvish language (Sindarin) on Old Welsh. So yes, it's so strange-sounding and old that it was actually the basis for a made-up fantasy language.

4. The scenery

Conwy harbour at sunset
Conwy harbour at sunset
Lake Vyrnwy at twilight
Lake Vyrnwy

Wales has all sorts of scenery, from rolling hills (that they call mountains) to crashing coastlines. The roads through some of this scenery are twisting and so narrow that two cars literally can't pass one another. And they're often littered with sheep.

The combination of these two things will probably mean that you'll stop a lot when driving and you'll be late to everything.

Welsh countryside
Welsh roads

And then there are the beaches, which are far too empty and clean compared to ones you'll find elsewhere in Europe. Some have even won awards and stuff, which kind of just makes it feel like Wales is showing off.

Ynys Llanddwyn in Wales
Ynys Llanddwyn
Ynys Llanddwyn beach
Ynys Llanddwyn

5. Adventure sports

People in Wales are a little crazy.

Not only do they do things like surfing and whitewater rafting in frigid mountain water, but they also like to fly down mountainsides on bikes, hurtle over old quarries on zip lines, and even invented a sport that combines swimming, coastal hiking, and cliff jumping in a sport the Welsh have dubbed “coasteering.”

Zip lining at Zip World Titan in Wales
Zip lining in Wales
Gorge hiking in Wales
Gorge hiking in Wales

I know of New Zealand as an adventure-crazy country, but Wales may be just as insane when it comes to inventive (and abundant) ways to hurt yourself.

RELATED: 7 Epic Adventures to Have in North Wales

6. Adorable towns

Little Welsh towns – like the ones you'll find in Snowdonia – are unbearably cute. With old stone buildings and cozy low-ceilinged cafes and pubs, it's just too much.

Dolgellau town center in Wales
Dolgellau town center

Dial back on the quaintness, Wales. Seriously. You're going to leave people very disappointed when they visit other villages after these.

Betws-y-Coed train staion
Betws-y-Coed train staion
Caernarfon, Wales
Street in Caernarfon

7. Welsh humbleness

People in wales are far too humble. Whereas in Scotland they are quick to tell you what a town or loch or island is famous for, in Wales you almost have to force it out of the locals.

They also don't like to brag about their famous Welsh residents (like Tom Jones and Roald Dahl) or about cool accomplishments (they built the first traffic suspension bridge) or fun facts (Wales is home to a 4,000 year old tree!).

Smallest house in Great Britain in Conwy, Wales
For example, the smallest house in Great Britain is in Conwy, Wales!

Stop being so darn sheepish, Wales! (I mean, I know you HAVE lots of sheep, but you don't need to act like them.) A little bragging every once in a while will do you good.

8. Not a lot of tourists

Lastly, since most tourist to the UK go to places like London and Edinburgh, you'll find many parts of Wales virtually devoid of any tourists. You can walk into a pub in many small cities and find only locals speaking Welsh (who will give you a strange look when you start speaking English).

Even the touristy places still feel very quiet.

Caernarfon, Wales at sunset

It's a real shock after visiting so many other parts of the UK where you just find busloads and busloads of tourists.

Seaside resort town of Llandudno, Wales
Even the seaside resort town of Llandudno was quiet.

*I don't hate Wales, folks

To address all the angry people leaving comments on this post… of course I don't actually hate Wales!

In case my snarkiness didn't come through, let me state it plainly: this entire post is written tongue-in-cheek.

These are all reasons why you SHOULD visit Wales. I think Wales is an amazing part of the UK, and I'm frankly baffled over why more people don't visit.

With all the castles, beautiful scenery, outdoor adventure, and the fact that there aren't a ton of tourists, there's really no denying that Wales is a great destination.

Harbor in Conwy, Wales

I only spent a handful of days in northern Wales, but it was long enough for me to conclude that Wales is very special (and I'm definitely not saying that just because I have a Welsh surname…).

In fact, I think my next trip to the UK might be JUST a trip to Wales!

Who's ready to plan a trip to Wales?

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*Note: I was a guest of Visit Wales and Visit Britain on this trip, but all opinions – along with replies to all nasty comments left by people who haven't actually read this post – as always, are 100% my own.

"It's a dangerous business, going out your door. You step onto the road, and, if you don't keep your feet, there's no telling where you might get swept off to." - JRR Tolkien

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286 Comments on “8 Reasons Why You Should Never Go to Wales

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  1. Hi! I want to go to Wales! How do you get around if you don’t drive? Train, Bus? Is there a good central place to be to take day trips from? Thanks for any help!

      Having a car is definitely the easiest way to get around, but you can also get to many places using public transport like trains. If you’d rather travel from a home base, Cardiff would probably be your best bet!

    I opened this page ready to get angry and very defensive about my country. But it didn’t take me long to sense the sarcasm. It made me laugh and feel proud of Wales! It was beautifully written. The other Welsh people in the comments are crazy and most of us aren’t like that, I promise! Cymru am byth ???????

      Haha! I’m glad you caught on to the sarcasm and genuine love for Wales!

    You should NEVER EVER EXPLAIN your joke! It takes all the power out of it. Anyone who reads what you say about Wales and still believes you’re recommending not to go there deserves to be fooled and shouldn’t go. In fact that title was the very reason I stopped to read it. I live in a place where we say to visitors, “ okay I’ll show you this magnificent local secret spot but then I’ll have to kill you” believing that automatically separates the worthy from the unworthy.
    I’m looking for any artists and writers residencies in Wales. Do any of your followers have any recommendations I can follow up on?
    Thanks for your own writing,

    Wow, great article Amanda, Wales sounds absolutely beautiful. We were thinking about trying to fit it in for our next trip until we read the comments. A lot of anger and bitterness it seems. We will stick to our trip through England and Scotland. Enjoyed reading it though and looking forward to reading any future articles of yours about England and Scotland x

      Don’t let the numpties in the comment section here scare you away; Wales is pretty awesome!

    Love, love, love this. My grandfather emigrated to the US from Cardiff (via London on the Lusitania). I have wanted to visit for years. I think your article sealed the deal for me. MUST MAKE IT A PRIORITY TRIP. Thanks and my goodness, what a bunch of sensitive folks there are out there (alas, not news . . . !)
    Great writing (and photos.) Thank you. Best wishes.

    Great post – the title drew me in!
    What an enjoyable read; very funny, very clever 🙂

    And now I want to go to Wales.

    I love Wales and get that you do too.?

    How about not ever naming something one might confuse with a reliable digest concerning vacation places or points of interest or even just something reliable and factual. This being said and naming a piece ” 8 Reasons not to etc. etc.” I prefer not to repeat your phrase as to me it is misleading. You may have considered how many people only read the title and assume the rest. Shame on you!!!!

      Maybe you’re the one who should reconsider. Since when do they teach in school that you should only read the title and not the rest of the story? Shame on YOU, sir.

        Perfect response. I read the whole article because of the title. Now I would love to move there.

        You have to wonder if E Jeff has encountered irony anywhere else in his life and had the same reaction.

    Wow, I can’t really say I give a sh*t, but got to be honest this actually scores a point for Wales, this just proves how snobby other countries are. Sure, we have alot of castles but that just proves how royal we are. At least we’re not like musty wannabe England which is full of misery, roadmen, and musty, crusty lookin boris Johnson that literally looks like a dying cockatoo bird. Honestly Wales is underrated, and small, so don’t tell me to stop typing. Because i WILL write a whole paragraph on how people like THIS need to SHUT.THE. F*CK. UP we all know that England is always thristy for attention. It looks royal on one side, sure thing…. But have you SEEN the roadmen, the ammount of drug dealers, miserable polliticians, middle class snobs who sip on their tea whilst laughing at us. But i swear to fucking god, one day Wales will smack those cups of tea straight out of your dirty, English hands. -From someone with common sense. xx

      Well you may have common sense, but apparently not a sense of humor (or the ability to read a whole blog post before leaving a comment?). I agree with you 100% that Wales is underrated! Also, I’m not English.

    I LOVE it!! I can’t wait to not go someday soon. ?

    Terrible place – might even dream about it! Want more….

    me and my WELSH friends are offended by this. they’re not ‘fAiRy tAlEs’ they are very important to us welsh. eg, the story of our flag represents a war. go find out facts before you say things like this. also that ‘lOnG nAmE’ is a sentence.

      Maybe you should read the whole post before you get SuPeR oFfEnDeD. My last name is Williams. I have Welsh ancestry. 😉

      I totally agree with you
      Wouldnt want to live anywhere else
      We arent perfect but try our best

    I ain’t buying any of it if you like wales so much then why title it “8 reasons why you should never visit wales” we are not the only country who has sheep, castles and a lot of history i know we have a lot of those things but you can blame history not us welsh

      It’s called “creative writing.” But also, I’m the author and I’m literally telling you in the post that I do like Wales and that I purposely wrote this tongue-in-cheek. If you don’t want to believe me, then I’m not sure what else to say.

    I love this post about Wales! I giggled the whole way through — in addition to being riveted about the natural beauty, and unaltered historical value of the structures and culture overall! And please, PLEASE ignore any snippy comments from folks who seem to take life a bit too seriously…the fact that they didn’t get it is almost as humorous as your darling feature about this undoubtedly whimsical area of the UK. I’m SOLD! Next stop…WALES! ?

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