15 Best Things To Do In Aberystwyth, Wales

15 Best Things To Do In Aberystwyth, Wales

By will

As I stepped foot in Aberystwyth, Wales, I couldn’t help but be captivated by its charm and natural beauty. Nestled along the western coast, this small seaside town offers a plethora of activities and attractions that are sure to delight any visitor.

From exploring historic ruins to taking a scenic train ride through the countryside, Aberystwyth has something for everyone. So, whether you’re a history buff, a nature enthusiast, or simply seeking a peaceful getaway, let me take you on a journey through the 15 best things to do in Aberystwyth.

As you wander through Aberystwyth Castle, you can’t help but feel a sense of awe at the historic ruins that have withstood the test of time. The crumbling walls and remnants of a once mighty stronghold paint a vivid picture of the town’s rich history.

And just a stone’s throw away, the Seafront Promenade beckons with its stunning views of the Irish Sea. Take a leisurely stroll along the promenade, feeling the cool sea breeze on your face and listening to the crashing waves. You’ll soon find yourself immersed in the beauty and tranquility of this coastal gem.

Aberystwyth Castle: Exploring the Historic Ruins

Aberystwyth Castle
Photo by Ian Capper

If you’re into history and love exploring ancient ruins, you can’t miss Aberystwyth Castle – it’s a must-visit attraction in Wales!

As soon as I stepped foot into the castle grounds, I was immediately transported back in time. The castle, originally built in the 13th century, is perched on a hilltop overlooking the stunning Aberystwyth coastline.

The crumbling walls and towering towers evoke a sense of awe and wonder, making it the perfect destination for history buffs like myself.

Exploring the ruins of Aberystwyth Castle is like stepping into a medieval fortress. As I walked along the narrow passageways and climbed the spiral staircases, I couldn’t help but imagine what life was like for the people who once called this place home.

The castle’s strategic location offered commanding views of the surrounding countryside, and its imposing presence served as a symbol of power and authority.

One of the highlights of my visit was standing atop the castle’s tallest tower and taking in the breathtaking panoramic views. From this vantage point, I could see the rolling hills, the shimmering sea, and the charming town of Aberystwyth below.

It was a truly magical experience that left me in awe of the castle’s rich history and its enduring beauty.

If you’re planning a trip to Aberystwyth, make sure to carve out some time to explore the historic ruins of Aberystwyth Castle. Whether you’re a history enthusiast or simply looking for a unique adventure, this ancient fortress will not disappoint.

Seafront Promenade: Enjoying a Leisurely Stroll

Aberystwyth seafront
Photo by Richard Croft

Take a leisurely stroll along the Seafront Promenade for a delightful way to enjoy the beautiful coastal scenery. As I walked along the promenade, I couldn’t help but be captivated by the stunning views of the sea. The sound of the waves crashing against the shore and the fresh sea breeze in my face created a sense of tranquility that’s hard to find elsewhere.

The promenade itself is well-maintained and lined with benches, perfect for taking a moment to sit and soak in the surroundings. Along the way, I passed by charming cafes and shops, adding to the lively atmosphere of the area. The promenade stretches for miles, allowing for a leisurely walk that can be as short or as long as you desire.

Whether you’re taking a romantic stroll with a loved one or simply enjoying some alone time, the Seafront Promenade is a must-visit attraction in Aberystwyth.

Not only does the Seafront Promenade offer picturesque views, but it also provides access to a number of other attractions. One notable spot along the promenade is the Victorian Pier, a historic landmark that offers a variety of amusements and entertainment options. From arcades to ice cream stands, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. The pier also offers breathtaking views of the coastline, making it a popular spot for photography enthusiasts.

As I continued my walk, I came across the bandstand, where live music performances often take place during the summer months. This added a lively and festive atmosphere to my stroll.

Overall, the Seafront Promenade is the perfect place to unwind, enjoy the beauty of Aberystwyth, and immerse yourself in the vibrant culture of the town.

Beach Activities: Relaxing and Unwinding by the Sea

On Aberystwyth beach
Photo by Richard Law

When you’re at the beach, there’s nothing quite like relaxing and unwinding by the sea.

The beach activities in Aberystwyth offer the perfect opportunity to do just that.

As the waves crash against the shore, you can feel the stress of everyday life melt away.

Whether you choose to lay out a towel and soak up the sun, or take a leisurely stroll along the sand, the beach in Aberystwyth provides a serene and tranquil escape from the hustle and bustle of the city.

If you’re feeling a bit more adventurous, there are plenty of beach activities to keep you entertained.

You can try your hand at surfing, with the waves providing the perfect conditions for beginners and experienced surfers alike.

Or perhaps you’d prefer to explore the underwater world with a spot of snorkeling or diving.

The clear blue waters of Aberystwyth are teeming with marine life, making it a great spot for underwater exploration.

And if you’re looking for something a bit more low-key, you can always grab a book and find a cozy spot in the sand to relax and enjoy the sound of the waves.

Whatever your preference, the beach in Aberystwyth offers the perfect backdrop for a day of relaxation and unwinding by the sea.

Charming Cafes: Indulging in a Coffee Break

Indulging in a coffee break at one of Aberystwyth’s charming cafes is the perfect way to treat yourself while exploring the beach town.

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As you step into the cozy atmosphere, the aroma of freshly brewed coffee fills the air, instantly awakening your senses.

The cafes in Aberystwyth are known for their warm and inviting ambiance, making them the ideal spot to relax and unwind after a stroll along the beach.

One of my favorite cafes in Aberystwyth is tucked away in a quaint corner, offering a picturesque view of the sea.

As I settle into a comfortable seat, I am surrounded by the soothing sound of waves crashing against the shore.

The menu boasts a wide variety of coffee options, from rich and creamy lattes to bold and robust espressos.

I can’t resist indulging in a decadent slice of cake to accompany my beverage, adding a touch of sweetness to my coffee break.

The friendly baristas are passionate about their craft and take pride in creating the perfect cup of coffee.

They are always eager to share their knowledge and recommend unique blends and flavor combinations.

As I sip on my perfectly brewed coffee, I can’t help but appreciate the attention to detail and the care that goes into every cup.

Indulging in a coffee break at one of Aberystwyth’s charming cafes is not just about the coffee itself, but also about the experience.

It’s a chance to take a moment for yourself, to savor the flavors and soak in the cozy atmosphere.

So, whether you’re a coffee aficionado or simply in need of a caffeine boost, be sure to make a stop at one of Aberystwyth’s charming cafes and treat yourself to a delightful coffee break by the sea.

Vale of Rheidol Railway: Taking a Scenic Train Ride

Vale of Rheidol Railway

As I board the charming Vale of Rheidol Railway, the scenic train ride sweeps me through breathtaking landscapes, immersing me in the beauty of the Welsh countryside. The rhythmic chugging of the train and the gentle swaying of the carriage create a soothing ambiance as we venture deeper into the heart of nature.

The windows frame picturesque views of lush green fields, rolling hills, and meandering rivers. It’s as if time stands still, allowing me to fully appreciate the tranquility and serenity of this idyllic setting.

The journey takes me along the Rheidol Valley, a place rich in history and natural wonders. The train passes through quaint villages, their colorful houses dotting the landscape like scattered puzzle pieces. I can’t help but marvel at the impressive engineering feat that is the Devil’s Bridge, where the train crosses a stunning gorge with cascading waterfalls below. The sight is truly awe-inspiring, and I feel a sense of wonderment at the raw power and beauty of nature.

As the train continues its ascent, the scenery becomes even more captivating. The dense forests that line the tracks come alive with vibrant shades of green, creating a lush canopy overhead. The air is crisp and invigorating, and I can’t help but feel a sense of peace and rejuvenation.

The journey reaches its climax at the summit, where I am rewarded with panoramic views of the Cambrian Mountains, their majestic peaks stretching as far as the eye can see. It’s a sight that takes my breath away and leaves me with a deep appreciation for the natural wonders of Wales.

The Vale of Rheidol Railway offers a truly unforgettable experience, allowing me to escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life and immerse myself in the beauty of nature. Whether you’re a train enthusiast, a nature lover, or simply seeking a peaceful retreat, this scenic train ride is a must-do when visiting Aberystwyth.

So sit back, relax, and let the Vale of Rheidol Railway guide you on a journey through some of the most breathtaking landscapes Wales has to offer.

National Library of Wales: Immersing in Cultural Heritage

Immerse yourself in Welsh cultural heritage at the National Library of Wales, where you can explore a treasure trove of historical artifacts and immerse yourself in the rich tapestry of Welsh history and culture.

As soon as you step foot into the library, you’ll be greeted by the grandeur of the building itself. With its impressive architecture and stunning views of the surrounding countryside, it’s hard not to be captivated by the sheer beauty of the place.

Once inside, you’ll find yourself surrounded by an incredible collection of books, manuscripts, maps, and photographs that span centuries of Welsh history. Whether you’re a history buff or simply curious about the country’s past, there’s something here for everyone.

From ancient Celtic manuscripts to contemporary works by Welsh authors, the library is a true treasure trove of knowledge.

But it’s not just about the books and artifacts. The National Library of Wales also hosts a range of events and exhibitions that showcase the vibrant culture of Wales. From workshops on traditional crafts to talks by renowned Welsh artists and musicians, there’s always something happening here that will transport you into the heart of Welsh culture.

So, if you’re looking to delve into the rich heritage of Wales, a visit to the National Library is a must. Prepare to be inspired, educated, and amazed by the wealth of history and culture that awaits you.

Aberystwyth Cliff Railway: Admiring Panoramic Views

Take a breathtaking journey on the Aberystwyth Cliff Railway and be awe-struck by the panoramic views that stretch out before you. As the railway slowly ascends, you’ll feel a sense of anticipation building up inside you. The moment you reach the summit, your breath will be taken away by the stunning vistas that unfold in front of your eyes.

From the top of the cliff, you’ll be treated to a sweeping view of the beautiful Welsh coastline. The deep blue sea stretches as far as the eye can see, meeting the clear sky on the horizon. The rugged cliffs and rolling hills create a picturesque backdrop, adding to the charm of the scenery. It’s a sight that will truly leave you in awe.

Not only does the Aberystwyth Cliff Railway offer magnificent views, but it also provides a unique perspective on the surrounding area. As you travel up the railway, you’ll be able to spot landmarks such as the National Library of Wales and the iconic Aberystwyth University. The knowledgeable guides on board will share interesting facts and stories about the history and culture of the region, ensuring that your journey is not only visually stunning but also educational.

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The Aberystwyth Cliff Railway is a must-visit attraction for anyone exploring Aberystwyth. It offers a memorable experience that combines natural beauty, cultural heritage, and informative commentary. So, hop on board and prepare to be mesmerized by the breathtaking panoramic views that await you at the top.

Constitution Hill: Climbing to the Summit for Spectacular Scenery

Climbing to the summit of Constitution Hill rewards you with breathtaking scenery that will leave you in awe. As you make your way up the hill, the panoramic views of Aberystwyth and the surrounding coast unfold before your eyes.

The climb may be steep, but the effort is well worth it. Once you reach the top, you are greeted with a stunning vista that stretches as far as the eye can see.

On one side, you can admire the picturesque town of Aberystwyth with its charming Victorian buildings and bustling promenade. On the other side, the vast expanse of the Irish Sea sparkles under the sunlight, inviting you to take a moment and soak in the beauty of nature.

The summit of Constitution Hill also offers various amenities to make your visit even more enjoyable. You can grab a hot cup of coffee or a refreshing ice cream from the café, while taking in the breathtaking scenery.

There are also binoculars available, allowing you to get a closer look at the details of the landscape and perhaps spot some wildlife.

Whether you’re a nature lover, a photography enthusiast, or simply seeking a peaceful escape, climbing to the summit of Constitution Hill promises an unforgettable experience.

Ceredigion Museum: Discovering Local History and Artifacts

After enjoying the breathtaking views from the top of Constitution Hill, I was eager to delve into the history and culture of Aberystwyth even further. That’s when I decided to visit the Ceredigion Museum, a fascinating place where the past comes alive through a collection of local artifacts and captivating exhibitions.

Stepping into the Ceredigion Museum felt like stepping back in time. The museum is housed in a historic building that itself has a story to tell. As I wandered through the corridors, I couldn’t help but be in awe of the impressive collection of artifacts on display.

From ancient archaeological finds to more recent treasures, the museum offers a comprehensive glimpse into the history and heritage of Aberystwyth and its surrounding area.

One of the highlights of my visit was exploring the interactive exhibits that brought the past to life. I found myself immersed in the stories of the people who once called Aberystwyth home, learning about their daily lives, traditions, and even their struggles.

The museum also showcases a range of artwork that celebrates the rich artistic heritage of the region. From traditional Welsh crafts to contemporary pieces, there is something to captivate every visitor.

Visiting the Ceredigion Museum was not only an educational experience, but also a deeply enriching one. It allowed me to connect with the history of Aberystwyth in a meaningful way, gaining a deeper appreciation for the town and its cultural roots.

If you’re looking to delve into the local history and discover the stories that shaped Aberystwyth, a visit to the Ceredigion Museum is an absolute must.

Aberystwyth Arts Centre: Enjoying Live Performances and Exhibitions

Immerse yourself in the vibrant arts scene of Aberystwyth at the Aberystwyth Arts Centre, where live performances and captivating exhibitions await.

As soon as you step foot into this cultural hub, you’ll be greeted by a bustling atmosphere filled with creativity and passion. The center hosts a wide range of events throughout the year, including theater productions, music concerts, dance performances, and art exhibitions.

Whether you’re a fan of classical music or contemporary dance, there’s something for everyone at the Aberystwyth Arts Centre. The live performances are a treat for the senses, with talented artists and performers taking the stage to entertain and inspire. From thought-provoking plays to mesmerizing ballet performances, you’ll be captivated by the talent and artistry on display.

In addition to the live performances, the Aberystwyth Arts Centre also features a variety of exhibitions that showcase the work of local and international artists. From paintings and sculptures to photography and installations, the artwork on display is diverse and thought-provoking. As you wander through the gallery, you’ll have the opportunity to appreciate and engage with different visual mediums, gaining a deeper understanding and appreciation for the arts.

Whether you’re a seasoned art enthusiast or simply looking to explore something new, the Aberystwyth Arts Centre is a must-visit destination in Aberystwyth. Immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere, let the live performances transport you to another world, and allow the captivating exhibitions to ignite your imagination.

This cultural gem is sure to leave you inspired and eager to discover more about the arts scene in Aberystwyth.

Bwlch Nant yr Arian Forest Visitor Centre: Exploring Nature Trails and Wildlife

Explore the breathtaking nature trails and observe the diverse wildlife at the Bwlch Nant yr Arian Forest Visitor Centre, where you can truly connect with the natural beauty surrounding you.

As I embarked on the trails, I was immediately captivated by the lush greenery that enveloped the entire forest. The air was crisp, and the sounds of chirping birds and rustling leaves created a serene ambiance.

The well-maintained trails winded through the forest, offering a variety of routes suitable for all levels of hikers. Whether you prefer a leisurely stroll or a more challenging hike, there is something for everyone here.

As I ventured deeper into the forest, I couldn’t help but be amazed by the abundance of wildlife that called this place home. From graceful deer gracefully leaping through the trees to squirrels scurrying about, the forest was teeming with life. If you’re lucky, you might even catch a glimpse of the elusive red kite soaring high above the treetops.

The visitor centre also offers feeding sessions where you can witness the majestic birds of prey up close. It was a truly mesmerizing experience to see these magnificent creatures in their natural habitat.

The Bwlch Nant yr Arian Forest Visitor Centre is not just a place to admire nature; it’s a place to connect with it. With its stunning trails and diverse wildlife, this is a must-visit destination for nature lovers. So, lace up your hiking boots, grab your binoculars, and get ready to immerse yourself in the wonders of the natural world at the Bwlch Nant yr Arian Forest Visitor Centre.

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Aberystwyth University: Appreciating Architectural Beauty and Academic Excellence

Aberystwyth University’s stunning architecture and reputation for academic excellence make it a must-see destination for visitors. As soon as you set foot on the campus, you can’t help but be in awe of the magnificent buildings that surround you.

From the iconic Old College, with its grand Victorian facade, to the modern and innovative new buildings, the university is a true architectural gem. The blend of old and new creates a unique and captivating atmosphere that is both inspiring and inviting.

But Aberystwyth University is not just a pretty face. It is also renowned for its academic achievements and world-class research. The university is home to a wide range of disciplines, from arts and humanities to science and technology. Whether you’re interested in history, literature, or cutting-edge scientific discoveries, Aberystwyth University has something to offer.

Walking through the campus, you can feel the intellectual energy that permeates the air. It’s a place where knowledge is cherished, and learning is a way of life.

So, whether you’re a prospective student or just a curious visitor, a trip to Aberystwyth University will leave you inspired and in awe of its architectural beauty and academic excellence.

Rheidol Riding Centre: Horseback Riding in the Countryside

Get ready to experience the thrill of horseback riding through the breathtaking countryside at Rheidol Riding Centre.

As soon as I arrived at this charming equestrian facility, I was instantly captivated by the rustic beauty of the surrounding landscape.

Nestled amidst rolling hills and lush green fields, Rheidol Riding Centre offers the perfect setting for an unforgettable horseback adventure.

The experienced and friendly staff at the centre made me feel at ease as they guided me through the process of selecting the right horse and fitting it with the necessary equipment.

Once I mounted my horse, I was ready to embark on a journey filled with excitement and natural splendor.

The well-maintained trails at Rheidol Riding Centre wind their way through picturesque countryside, allowing riders to take in stunning vistas and immerse themselves in the tranquility of nature.

Whether you’re a seasoned rider or a beginner, the centre offers a range of options to cater to your skill level, ensuring a safe and enjoyable ride for everyone.

So, saddle up and get ready to create lasting memories as you explore the scenic beauty of Aberystwyth on horseback at Rheidol Riding Centre.

Llanerchaeron: Visiting a Georgian Villa and Gardens

Immerse yourself in the elegance and charm of Llanerchaeron, where you’ll be transported back in time to a Georgian villa and its breathtaking gardens.

As I strolled through the grand entrance of the villa, I couldn’t help but marvel at its exquisite architecture and intricate details. The Georgian era truly comes to life here, with every room meticulously restored to its former glory. From the opulent drawing rooms adorned with chandeliers and rich tapestries to the cozy bedrooms with their canopy beds, each space tells a story of a bygone era.

Beyond the villa, the gardens of Llanerchaeron beckon with their beauty and serenity. As I wandered along the winding paths, I was surrounded by a symphony of colors and scents. The perfectly manicured lawns and vibrant flowerbeds create a picturesque setting that feels straight out of a painting. I couldn’t resist sitting on one of the benches scattered throughout the gardens, taking in the peaceful ambiance and soaking up the sunshine.

Llanerchaeron is not just a place to admire from a distance, but also offers interactive experiences that allow visitors to truly engage with the history and lifestyle of the Georgian era. From costumed guides leading informative tours to hands-on workshops where you can try your hand at traditional crafts, there is something for everyone here.

Whether you’re a history enthusiast, a nature lover, or simply seeking a tranquil escape, Llanerchaeron is a must-visit destination that will leave you enchanted and inspired.

Devil’s Bridge and Waterfalls: Witnessing Nature’s Majestic Power

Experience the awe-inspiring power of nature as you venture to Devil’s Bridge and Waterfalls, where you’ll be captivated by the majestic beauty that surrounds you.

As I made my way along the winding path, the sound of rushing water grew louder, foreshadowing the breathtaking sight that awaited me.

And there it was, Devil’s Bridge, an architectural marvel that spans the Rheidol Gorge, standing proudly against the backdrop of lush greenery.

As I approached the bridge, I could feel the mist from the cascading waterfalls on my face, and the cool breeze brought a refreshing sense of tranquility.

The sheer force of the water as it plummeted down the rocky cliffs was a sight to behold.

Each waterfall seemed to have its own unique character, from the graceful and delicate flow of water to the thunderous roar of a powerful cascade.

It was as if nature itself was putting on a grand performance just for me.

Descending the steps to reach the base of the waterfalls, I was surrounded by a symphony of sights and sounds.

The vibrant colors of the moss-covered rocks contrasted beautifully with the crystal-clear water, creating a scene straight out of a fairytale.

As I walked along the well-maintained path, I couldn’t help but feel a sense of wonder and appreciation for the natural world.

Devil’s Bridge and Waterfalls truly allows you to disconnect from the hustle and bustle of everyday life and immerse yourself in the awe-inspiring power and beauty of nature.

Conclusion

In conclusion, my visit to Aberystwyth, Wales has been nothing short of amazing. From exploring the historic ruins of Aberystwyth Castle to taking a leisurely stroll along the seafront promenade, there is never a dull moment in this charming town.

The beach activities provided the perfect opportunity to relax and unwind, while the charming cafes offered a delightful break with a cup of coffee.

One of the highlights of my trip was the scenic train ride on the Vale of Rheidol Railway. The breathtaking views of the countryside as the train chugged along were simply unforgettable. I also couldn’t help but be in awe of Aberystwyth University’s architectural beauty and academic excellence.

If you’re looking for some adventure, horseback riding at Rheidol Riding Centre is a must. The tranquil countryside setting makes it a perfect escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. For those interested in history and culture, a visit to Llanerchaeron, a Georgian villa and its stunning gardens, is a must.

Last but not least, witnessing the majestic power of nature at Devil’s Bridge and Waterfalls was truly awe-inspiring. The cascading waterfalls and the ancient bridge created a picturesque scene that will forever be etched in my memory.

In conclusion, Aberystwyth, Wales offers a variety of activities and attractions that cater to every interest and taste. Whether you’re a history buff, a nature lover, or simply looking to relax and unwind, this charming town has something for everyone. So pack your bags and get ready for an unforgettable adventure in Aberystwyth, Wales.

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About the author

Will is an avid hillwalker and traveler. You may find him surfing in Cornwall or hiking in the Yorkshire Dales.