Wales is an absolutely beautiful country to explore! From picturesque cities like Tenby wonderful Welsh beaches and beautiful national parks, it’s the kind of country that has a small chunk of everything to see. Now, if you’re based on that South Wales or more rural areas around West Wales, you will easily find a bunch of peaceful and completely beautiful national parks to visit. This is no more true than with the Brecon Beacons. Stretching half the width of Wales, there are a bunch of the best places in the Brecon Beacons that you won’t want to miss!
Being one of the three national parks in Wales (like Snowdonia and Pembrokeshire), Brecon Beacons has long been protected so we can all enjoy.
It is a place that is completely easy to visit if you like one of them South Wales’ cities for a day trip or independent vacation. Honestly, you can spend a bunch of time in the Brecon Beacons, and you can’t see it all!
So to help you get the most out of your trip, I wanted to share some of the gems we love.
Check out the best places to visit in Brecon Beacons below. Have fun in Wales.
1.) Fforest Fawr Geopark (from Pen-y-Fan to Dan Yr Ogof)
For anyone who loves great outdoor spaces, Geopark Fforest Fawr will be an area you will have to visit. Stretching from Brecon to Llandeil, it compromises the vast majority of western Brecon Beacons and is stunning to visit.
And not only that, it is now classified as UNESCO’s Global Geopark, the first geopark ever named in Wales.
You see, what makes this one of the best places in Brecon Beacons to visit is its long and diverse history. Beautiful landscapes were created more than 20,000 years ago. And not only that, the entire Fforest Fawr geopark area even has evidence of early populations that lived in the area more than 8,000 years ago!
Once here, be sure to explore the trails around the Black Mountains, like the Black Mountain Circle, for example. Yes, it takes about 25km to complete, but it’s absolutely amazing to see.
Alternatively, go one of the shorter routes to see Llyn and Fan Fach, a glacial lake that is too stunning to miss.
For views, head to the top of Pen-y-Fan to find the most beautiful sunset (or sunrise, if you’re thrilled). Now it may be a long time, but four hiking routes to the top they are utterly stunning. Just be sure to hike responsibly and be aware of the weather conditions that can change very quickly here.
If you’re closer to Merthyr Tydfil, stop by the Pontsticill Reservoir to take a short walk. You can also enter Old Barn Tea Room to warm up with a few Welsh cakes, a bar of brith and hot tea. Yum!
Oh, and be sure to break into National Exhibition Center for Wales in Dan Yr Ogof. I have visited countless times and love them!
2.) Llanthony Priory
Located in the beautiful Ewyas Valley in the Brecon Beacons National Park, Llanthony Priory is a ruined monastery dating from the 12th century. Honestly, it is one of the best places on the Brecon Beacons to explore, especially if you like to get acquainted with the human history of the park.
You see, the Priory has a fascinating history, starting from the moment when a nobleman came across a dilapidated chapel and decided to dedicate himself to solitary prayer.
Eventually a church was built here that attracted monks and more followers and developed into one of the great Norman-Gothic buildings in Wales.
You can also join the section from here Beacons Way, a trail that runs 99 kilometers straight through the park itself.
Overnight? If you plan to stay overnight, visit the historic Abbey Hotel, which is integrated into the monastery tower.
3.) Lake Llangors
East of Brecon, Llangors Lake is the largest in South Wales and one of the best places in the Brecon Beacons to be visited in a few hours.
In the summer months, you may even be able to take a boat out to the lake. It’s wonderful and so picturesque.
4.) Brecon Mountain Railway
Want to cool off a bit but still see a host of the best places in the Brecon Beacons? Well, I just have a trick for you; ton Brecon Mountain Railway.
Running through the National Park (from Panta to Torpantau), jumping into historic steam trains is a completely unique way to experience the natural beauty of the area.
5.) Fan Hir
North of the Dan-Yr-Ogof Caves and within the Black Mountains, Fan Hir worth a visit because of the best views throughout the park. Well, at least in my opinion.
Just keep in mind, the route can get wet in very humid weather, so be sure to wear good, waterproof shoes. No one likes to be a wet mountaineer.
Don’t want hiking to the top? Follow some of the Beacons Way that provide impressive views of Fan Hir itself.
6.) Skirrid Mountain Inn & Castle and Tretower Palace
Speaking of haunted, the Skirrid Mountain Inn is known as one of the oldest and oldest pubs in Wales.
Built on a “shaky” mountain, the Skirrid Mountain Inn is said to be home to many ghosts, built into countless legends and has about 900 years of history in the Brecon Beacons as a execution site. Even today you can see an oak hanging beam on which people were hung!
Do you feel brave? Spend the night among the disgusting inhabitants while exploring The Great Skirrid Trail or further.
Speaking of home, drive 25 minutes west to explore Tretower Castle and Court.
It is known to have adapted to the current style, tastes and trends over the years, maintaining a reputation as one of the most modern courts in Wales. While there, try to spot the famous White Lady, forever waiting for the return of her brave lover from the Battle of Agincourt.
7.) Carreg Cennen Castle
Built in the 1200s, Carreg Cennen Castle is immersed in history and one of the best places on the Brecon Beacons to explore when on the western edges of the park.
Once here be sure to explore the natural caves and arched promenades and views across the region. It’s amazing.
8.) Red dragon feeding station
Located in Llanddeusant, Red dragon feeding station allows you to see one of the largest birds of prey in Wales. They are so magnificent – and huge!
Watch the cult Red Kites circle in the sky before they fly in for a meal, accompanied by other birds of prey like buzzards. It’s pretty easy to visit if you’re already at Fforest Fawr Geopark and it’s worth it if you love wildlife.
9.) Henrhyd Falls
Henrhyd Falls it is absolutely stunning to visit and is very easy to reach by car from Swansea or Merthyr Tydfil. It is one of the best places in the Brecon Beacons to visit, especially if you want to see the highest waterfalls of South Wales.
Also, maybe you recognize the downfalls from the movie about Batman, The Dark Knight? This is the real waterfall where Bat Cave is located!
Oh, just keep in mind, free parking is pretty small and can be recharged quickly. So, just take some cash with you to pay for private parking that is nearby.
10.) Waterfall land
On the outskirts of Brecon Beacons, an area lovingly known as Waterfall Country is an amazing place to explore – especially on foot.
Along with what makes you feel like a waterfall wherever you turn, walk a trail or two around the state of Waterfall and explore some of the key falls in the area.
When you reach the area, head towards parking on the Four Waterfalls walking trail. From here you will be able to visit the cult; Sgwd Clun-Gwyn, Sgwd Isaf Clun-Gwyn, Sgwd y Pannwr and beautiful Sr. Yira Eira.
11.) Talybont Reservoir
One of the largest water bodies in the Brecon Beacons, Talybont reservoir is a stunning place to visit the trails and overlook the sea.
Plus, you can easily connect this with the trail to the top of Pen y Fan, and then spend some time cooling off by the water. It is so intact.
Oh, and while you’re in the area, jump to a nearby one Pontsticill tank. It is about a 12-minute drive from the Talybont Reservoir and another great stop.
That being said, if you opt for the Brecon (from Panta) mountain railway, you will easily see Pontsticill tank as you meander along the edge of the valley.
12.) Sugar cake
Located within the southeastern edges of the Brecon Beacons, Sugar loaf is a great stopping point if you want to join a hike.
It takes you about three hours to fully pass this relatively easy route, the top of Sugarcake is wonderful to visit for a half day trip and is really beautiful on a sunny day. Along the way, you may also spot some of the local red dragons or black grouse that call this area of the park home.