Anglesey (Ynys Môn), compresses all the beauty and intrigue of Wales on one picturesque island. Things to do in Anglesey include hiking, visiting beaches and castles, wildlife watching, and eating delicious seafood.
Covering a mere 260 square miles, it’s possible to explore much of the Welsh island with only a couple of days. This guide is packed with details on how to visit and where to find the best Anglesey attractions.
Best time to visit Anglesey
As per the rest of the UK, Anglesey experiences four distinct seasons. Late spring through autumn is the best time frame for outdoor adventures with July and August being the hottest months. These are also the busiest times on the island, so you might prefer to avoid these.
Winter sees lows of 3° C (37° F) and highs of 8° C (46 ° F) with the most rainfall, although rain is typical throughout the year. However, the island is quiet and even more astonishing after a patch of drizzle. And – there are plenty of indoor things to do in Anglesey in the rain. Monitor the forecast in the days ahead of your trip so that you can pack appropriately.
How to get to Anglesey
Anglesey is accessible via road and rail.
Two bridges connect the island to the mainland. The Menai Suspension Bridge carries the A5 while Pont Britannia carries the North Wales Expressway as well as the railway line.
There are several train stations in southern Anglesey. Llanfairpwll is the closest to the mainland while Holyhead marks the end of the line. You can check train times and fares and book tickets via the Trainline website or app.
Liverpool John Lennon Airport (LPL) is the closest international airport. Check flight prices on Kiwi here.
How to get around the places to visit Anglesey
A comprehensive public bus system makes it easy to get around the things to see in Anglesey. You can refer to the Traveline Cymru website for local routes and plan your journey. Ask the staff at your hotel for bus tips as well; usually, they have printed bus timetables or useful intel!
Otherwise, you can get around Anglesey via rental car. The roads are pleasant and there are lots of car parks – some are free while others are paid. The Anglesey County Council website has a directory of where you can park on the island.
Where to stay in Anglesey
Anglesey is scattered with a range of accommodations across campgrounds, self-catered apartments, holiday cottages, inns, and hotels. You could choose to stay in a few different towns during your holiday. On the other hand, you could pick a base and visit Anglesey tourist attractions as day trips.
Lastra Farm Hotel consists of modern rooms and stylish suites. Breakfast is included and the property is pet-friendly.
On the other hand, you could stay in a kooky caravan at Railway Cottage Caravans No 1. Each unit has a private bathroom and kitchen plus a small garden area.
Alternatively, you can splurge with a night or two at Sandy Mount House. Boutique rooms come with luxurious bathrooms and breakfast is included in the rate.
Things to do in Anglesey
As one of the best places to visit in Wales, Anglesey is blessed with an abundance of natural and historic sites.
You can easily fill a week on the island. But, fortunately, the island is small enough that you can cover a lot of ground with fewer days.
Ignite your wanderlust with these top 13 sites and places to go in Anglesey.
1. Llanddwyn Island
Llanddwyn Island (Ynys Llanddwyn) is one of the number one Anglesey tourist attractions. Rather than an isle, it’s technically a peninsula only accessible at low tide.
A ruined church is perched on the outcrop. This was dedicated to Saint Dwynwen – the Welsh patron saint of lovers.
Apparently, Dwynwen fled to Llanddwyn Island after her one true love, Maelon, was turned to ice. Provided the tide is out, you can walk onto the island and clock a distant view of Mount Snowdon.
Llanddwyn Beach (Traeth Llanddwyn) is backed by a dense forest inhabited by red squirrels.
2. Holy Island
Holy Island protrudes off the western coast of Anglesey and is connected by Pont Lasinwen and the North Wales Expressway.
You can spend an entire day exploring the island – this is one of the most popular places to go in Anglesey for food, nature, and culture.
Holyhead is well-stocked with cafes and restaurants – but fish and chips is the way to go about things here!
Take a stroll around the harbour and you’ll see vessels bound for Ireland. Meanwhile, Holyhead Maritime Museum is a fascinating journey through the history of lifeboat rescues and piracy in the Irish Sea. It also contains an exhibition on both World Wars.
Highlights include South Stack Lighthouse (Goleudy Ynys Lawd) which occupies a bluff on a smaller island overlooking the Irish Sea.
Access is via a flight of 400 steps and you do need a ticket to visit the island and lighthouse.
The potential for bird watching near the lighthouse is excellent. But, you can also visit the nearby RSPB Cymru Ynys Lawd for the opportunity to spot the likes of guillemots, razorbills, and puffins.
Not far from the lighthouse, you will find the Ty Mawr Hut Circles which provide a peek into the traditional Celtic lifestyle.
3. Anglesey Beaches
If you’re a fan of beautiful beaches, you’ll be in your element on the island of Anglesey. Llanddwyn Beach, mentioned above, is one of the nicest options.
But, these are the best places to visit in Anglesey for a spot of swimming, sunbathing, or seaside strolling.
- Lligwy Beach (Traeth Lligwy): this sheltered bay on the northeast coast enjoys shallow, gentle water that is ideal for non-swimmers and small children. Nearby Benllech Beach offers similar conditions.
- Porth Dafarch: a pretty cove with crystal-clear water and rock pools, sheltered by a headland.
- Borthwen Beach (Traeth Borth Wen): a huge crescent of sand with tidal pools and expansive sand dunes.
4. Menai Suspension Bridge
Taking some time to appreciate the Menai Suspension Bridge is a must when visiting the Welsh island. Designed by the Scottish engineer Thomas Telford (who was responsible for a lot of British bridges – work was completed in 1826.
There are several viewpoints on Anglesey and the Welsh mainland. It’s worth getting up close as well as a perspective. Belgian Promenade and the official Menai Bridge Viewpoint are two of the best spots to get your photo.
But, you can actually coincide your photography session with a delicious meal at Dylan’s – one of the top food-related Anglesey things to do!
The restaurant is located on the waterfront with views over the Menai Strait. Menus focus on seafood such as Welsh oysters, seared scallops, seafood chowder, and fresh catches. Their pizza menu is to die for, as well.
5. Isle of Anglesey Coastal Path
Wales is one of the few countries in the world to have a footpath following the entire coastline. Whichever places you visit in Wales, you can add a section of the trail to your itinerary.
While on the island, you can follow the Isle of Anglesey Coastal Path. It starts at St Cybi’s Church, Holyhead, and covers 130 miles. The full route requires approximately 12 days to complete. However, it has been divided into 12 sections so you can choose one or two hiking trails to suit your personal preferences. The Isle of Anglesey Coastal Path contains trail maps and descriptions.
The trail passes through farmland, sand dunes, salt marsh, woodlands, and coastal bluffs. It’s one of the best things to do in Anglesey if you love hiking and getting outdoors.
6. Beaumaris Castle
They don’t call Wales the “Land of Castles” for nothing! Visiting the beautiful Welsh castles is one of the best things to do in Anglesey for families.
If you only have time to visit one Anglesey castle, make it Beaumaris Castle. Situated in the town of Beaumaris, this 13th-century fortress is fortified by a moat. As with many castles, this one was constructed under the direction of King Edward I in his Conquest against Wales.
Much of Beaumaris Castle remains intact through careful preservation work and you should expect to spend a few hours exploring.
You can purchase tickets at the site and come and go as you like for the rest of the day.
7. Beaumaris Gaol and Court
If you do head to Beaumaris, besides seeing the castle the Beaumaris Gaol and Court is one of the most fascinating Anglesey attractions.
This former prison is a chilling experience that casts light on punishment during the Victorian era. Exhibitions include original cells and tidbits of information about crimes that saw civilians imprisoned – from the marginal to the extreme.
As the gaol and court are undercover, this is one of the top things to do in Anglesey in the rain. You can purchase admission tickets on-site.
8. Copper Kingdom Centre
Sited at what was once the largest copper mine in the world, the Copper Kingdom Centre tells the history of those who worked in the mine.
Although the mine rose to glory during the “copper rush” of the 18th and 19th centuries, activity has taken place at this Amlwch mine since the Bronze Age.
One of the best things to do in Anglesey for families, the attraction contains an interactive exhibition with the chance to dress up in costumes and make your own brass rubbings. There is also a recreation of a mine and a walking trail across the site of the actual mine at Mynydd Parys Mountain.
9. Plas Newydd House and Gardens
The waterfront Plas Newydd House and Gardens was once the residence of the Marquess of Anglesey.
Neoclassical rooms are appointed with intricate wallpaper, indulgent upholstery, and vintage trinkets that suggest how the dwelling would have looked in the 18th century. A remodelling during the 1930s adds a twist to the experience and the house is adorned with paintings by Rex Whistler.
Admission grants access to the interiors and the gardens where you can drool over the views of the Snowdonia National Park across the Menai Strait.
Touring the house is one of the best things to do in Anglesey in the rain. It draws out the fragrances and hues of the flowers and trees in the garden, as well!
10. Anglesey Sea Zoo
The Anglesey Sea Zoo is dedicated to British marine life. Aquariums contain octopus, lobsters, seahorses, eels, and jellyfish while the exhibitions focus on the importance of conserving and safeguarding marine ecosystems.
Regular events include feedings and educational talks.
Visiting the Anglesey Sea Zoo is one of the top things to do in Anglesey for families. The centre has great prices on family tickets; you can purchase these at the site.
11. Bwa Gwyn and Bwa Du
Bwa Gwyn (White Arch) and Bwa Du (Black Arch) are two of the most remarkable natural things to see in Anglesey.
Formed by erosion, this duo of sea arches is located on Holy Island’s Rhoscolyn coast. They are featured on the Isle of Anglesey Coastal Path but you can also reach them via a short and sweet hike from Rhoscolyn village.
Traeth Borth Wen is close by and there is a great pub, the White Eagle, in Rhoscolyn where you can feast on pub favourites over an ale.
Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch is the world’s second-longest place name, pipped to the post only by Taumatawhakatangihangakoauauotamateaturipukakapikimaungahoronukupokaiwhenuakitnatahu in New Zealand.
In case you didn’t know, Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch is located on the island. Getting a photo of the sign is one of the classic tourist things to do in Anglesey.
The town is abbreviated to Llanfairpwllgwyngyll. But, there are several signs near the train station where the name is used in full. You can step onto the platform without a ticket and post with the sign.
If you need a hand pronouncing Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch, check out this clip of Welsh Broadcast Meteorologist Liam Dutton mastering it!
13. Snowdonia National Park
Snowdonia National Park is not technically located on the island. But, as the park is a short drive from Anglesey it’s entirely possible to squeeze in a day trip or plan a few days in the region before or after visiting the isle.
Things to do in Snowdonia National Park include riding the Snowdon Mountain Railway and hiking. Trails lead you to the summit of Mount Snowdon but there are easier, shorter walks available too. These take you up close to waterfalls, lakes, and rivers that flow through the park.
Visiting Snowdonia is one of the top things to do near Anglesey on a mild, dry, and clear day to maximise the views and experience.