Wales or Scotland - Please Help Decide

Old Jul 28th, 2004, 08:32 AM
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Wales or Scotland - Please Help Decide

Greetings!
After some time in England, I will have 3-4 days to spend in either Wales or Scotland. Like most travelers, I'm interested in all sort of things (e.g., sightseeing, nature, etc.). Any ideas which one I should visit?
Thanks in advance.
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Old Jul 28th, 2004, 09:27 AM
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Strictly my personal opinions. I love both.
If you like castles - northern Wales
If you like spectacular scenary and nature: the highlands of Scotland
Note: northern Wales has some lovely scenary but does not compare to Scotland and Scotland has some great castles but (to me) not as wonderful as the ones in northern Wales (Conwy, Beaumaris, Harlech, Caernarvon). I am sure you would enjoy either area.
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Old Jul 28th, 2004, 01:02 PM
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Hi EugeneNY

JMMs description is accurate. It's a tough call, but with only 3-4 days, I think I would pick Wales. You won't have time to see a lot, but go directly to the NW corner of the country and you'll see some spectacular scenery and beautiful castles. Scotland is much larger and I would leave that for a longer trip. Some of that would depend on where you will be in England though. If you are up north, you may want to condiser Scotland for a few days. In the south half, I would make it Wales.

The NW is not the only beautiful part of Wales, but it certainly has more bang for the buck mile for mile. When there, don't miss the one of a kind village of Portmeirion. It's an amazing little place and worth a good part of the day, though you can see the highlights in a morning.

I have a newly posted journal of my trip to SW England and Wales if that helps. It's at:

http://www.geocities.com/obeirne_wales_2004/

Have fun!

Bill
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Old Jul 28th, 2004, 01:38 PM
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A very hard decision to make, both beautiful places, and I agree Scotland has the Highlands & Isles, but with only 3-4 days I too would opt for Wales.
We stayed approx. 4 days in Wales on our last trip, and here are some of our favourites places to stay or visit:
1. Betws-y-coed.
2. Just off - either A4086 or A498 there is parking for people who want to climb Mt.Snowdon. Its a rocky pathway, with lots of steps, but with some fantastic views of lakes surrounding this mountain. We didn't get to the summit, as there was mist further up, and a walker advised not to do it, in the mist. The walk apparently brings you out near the summit, where the cog wheel railway goes. The walk up this mountain is thoroughly satisfying and most scenic, and more challenging than a cog wheel railway ride.
3. Pembrokeshire Coast National Park - which takes in the western coastline of southern Wales. Try to visit "Cresselly Arms" Inn at Cresswell Quay.
4. Another interesting area is the Brecon Beacons National Park. My favourite village in this Park, is "Ystradfelite", with its streams, caves & waterfalls.
Enjoy Wales, especially their succulent lamb dishes, and fantastic choir singing. (At Betws-y-coed, on certain nights, they have welsh choir practice in a church not far from the "Oak Inn")
If you do stay in Betws-y-coed, try to stay in one of the B&B's "within walking distance" of the town. Its very pleasant(even with light rain falling) to walk along beside the river & the rapids, to the town for dinner at the Oak Inn. (enjoy your drinks in the lounge bar just inside the front door, and the meals in the upmarket restaurant in the room to the right....don't eat out in the backbar, no ambience at all, its all in the front section)
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Old Jul 28th, 2004, 01:44 PM
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Hi EugeneNY!!!

I've also been to both Scotland and Wales and love them both. But, for the amount of time you have to spend, then I will agree with the other posters...definitely Wales!!! Northern Wales is beautiful and lots to do in a small area. Snowdonia area especially!!! My last trip, last year I spent a week in mid Wales around Cardigan Bay near the town of New Quay. Lots of cove walks there!! Going back in October!!!!
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Old Jul 28th, 2004, 02:11 PM
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EugeneNY - you will have to forgive my spelling errors in my last reply, when you mentioned Wales, I got all excited, and my mind was moving quicker than my typing fingers. One correct that I just realised, that great Hotel, is the "Royal Oak" and not "Oak".
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Old Jul 28th, 2004, 02:49 PM
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no, no, no. To coin a phrase; Wales, your beauties are mild and domestic, to one who has roamed o'er the mountains far!!

Pick a place; just one; the Borders; the East Neuk of Fife; the Central Highlands; the lovely West

and I guarantee you'll have a ball!!
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Old Jul 29th, 2004, 07:15 AM
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Everyone,

Thank you for your helpful and informative responses. Wales it will be!
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Old Aug 4th, 2004, 12:39 PM
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Well, I haven't been to Scotland yet (I'll be there on Tuesday!!!), but I did take a three-day trip to Wales last month and thoroughly loved it.

I went to Conwy, a wonderful town with a great castle and marvelous medieval walls---from there it is easy to go into Snowdonia. I hiked Mount Snowdon---it's a challenge, and I wouldn't recommend the full hike up and down unless you're fit and have a little experience, but the views are marvelous. The nice thing is that you can take the railway up to the summit if you can't hike it (though the views aren't as nice); one nice option is to take the train up and hike down.

After that I headed down to southern Wales (with a stopover in beautiful Tudor Shrewsbury). There I hiked the amazing Wye River Valley and the Forest of Dean. The only place international tourists really see there is Tintern Abbey, so it's a very nice place to be. I hiked the river valley for at least 20 miles---I just couldn't stop, it was so beautiful and invigorating. It's a lovely river---you can canoe or kayak on it, or you can walk one of the public trails running alongside.
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Old Aug 4th, 2004, 06:07 PM
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Better late than never. I loved Wales, too. But, then, I'm into castles. My husband and I stayed at the Ruthin Castle. It's a renovated Best Western and loved it. Drove from there to castles in the NW. Enjoy your trip

geordias
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Old Aug 4th, 2004, 06:29 PM
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EugebeNY: I'm late to this thread but just to reinforce your decision. Scotland is probably my very favorite place on Earth. But w/ just 3 or 4 days you would have to pick one small part and even then only see a tiny bit. It would just be a hard decision which part to visit and no matter where you chose you'd be missing something better.

But you can actually have a leisurely trip to North Wales in 3 - 4 days. Have enough time to see castles, beaches, Snowdonia, Angelsey, gardens, towns and villages, and gorgeous scenery and not have to drive miles and miles every day.

So as much as it pains me to say this - you are right to skip Scotland and visit N. Wales. You'll have a great time.
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