Wales might be a country of modest dimensions but, while small in area, it has so much opportunity for the traveller looking to get off the beaten path and explore. Stunning landscapes, beautiful beaches and cities packed with cultural delights are just the start. |
The size of Wales makes it particularly easy to get around by car and choosing this way to explore gives you the flexibility to go where you want, when you want and see as much as you like within the time you have.
We have chosen three beautiful trips that come highly recommended when it comes to discovering Wales on four wheels.
The Abergwesyn Pass
This is a beautiful route that only covers 20 miles, so it’s actually quite short compared to the others. That said, it is a journey that you definitely don’t want to be speeding through. Right in the heart of the Cambrian Mountains, the Abergwesyn Pass is a truly exhilarating drive. The road is quite worn down and hasn’t changed much since the days when it was an old drover’s track, so you’ll need to have your wits about you as you navigate the twists and turns.
As you leave Abergwesyn the way becomes very steep. At a 1 in 4 gradient you make your way up what is locally known as the Devil’s Staircase. Hairpin bends one after the other lead you to a dense forest, where you need to look out for the sheep that tend to meander all over the road as well as on the verges. After leaving the forest you wind your way back down to Tregaron.
Tip: Check your brakes before you head out on this one and make sure you have your car hire excess insurance sorted too in case of any unforeseen events.
The Brecon Beacons is a beautiful national park, full of wild moorland and rugged mountains. This route starts at Abergavenny and leads you to the tranquil Talybont Reservoir, which is a top spot for photos! As you make your way around the north of the park, you pass the Usk Reservoir and reach the Black Mountain Pass. Made famous by the popular TV show, Top Gear, this has a reputation as one of the best drives in the UK.
Imagine you are driving your own rollercoaster and you will get somewhere close to how it feels when you take on this road. Twists and turns whisk you through rolling moorland where stunning views greet you around every corner.
The Pembrokeshire Coast
Wales has some incredible beaches and the Pembrokeshire Coast is home to many of them. Jump in the car at Tenby and begin your drive westward toward the beautiful Barafundle Bay. You can take a walk from here to the Stackpole Nature Reserve and, if you are lucky, you might even see an otter or two.
As you head even more westward you will be spoilt for choice when it comes to beaches. Miles of silky soft sand lapped by deep turquoise waters seem to go on for miles. Freshwater is a lovely place to stop off for sunset photos - that’s if you make it that far after stopping at all the other spots in between!
It is best to stay on the smaller lanes and roads that make their way around the coast, instead of using the main roads. They’ll reward you with picture postcard views and you won’t miss the road down to Newgale Beach, which is certainly one of the most idyllic.
Before You Go
You really want to make the most of your trip once you have it all organised and booked, so don’t forget to get yourself sorted with car hire excess insurance before you go. This type of insurance covers you for all the things that your car hire company’s insurance doesn’t. Car hire excess insurance is a sensible investment when you are on a road trip, because nobody wants to come home to unexpected bills.
Wales is a fabulous place to visit, and the fact that it is on the doorstep makes it even more appealing. Start with the trips suggested above and you are bound to be inspired to do more. Author Plate Sam Walker is a specialist insurance expert at LowerHire, a company that offers low-cost single trip and annual multi-trip car hire excess insurance policies. Travellers can rest easy knowing they will be fully protected against any hidden hire car costs and look forward to a stress-free rental experience.
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