North Wales is right at the centre of the extreme-sports scene in Wales. With its dramatic coastlines, intense mountain ranges, and purpose-built adventure activities, those with a daring edge will love every second here. Snowdonia National Park dominates the eastern part of Conwy, and should be the first stop for any adrenaline junkie.
Areas like Betws-y-Coed are home to Go Below Underground Adventures where thrillseekers can come to traverse underground caverns and scale waterfalls. Just up the A470 from here is Zip World Fforest which has turned a peaceful woodland setting into a heart-pumping adventure playground with rope swings, treetop obstacles and even a toboggan ride.
On the outskirts of the park, just outside Dolgarrog, is Surf Snowdonia. It’s home to a purpose-built wave machine for surfers – both at beginner and pro level – to catch some waves all year round. But for a more authentic sporting experience on the sea water, Colwyn Bay is the go-to destination. Its watersport centre offers courses for windsurfing, sailing and even power boating. Children won’t be left out either as it opens a beach club for eight to 14-year-olds in the summer holidays.
Back on land, Ski Llandudno’s dry ski slope is found on top of the Great Orme. At the peak of the run, views across Llandudno are gorgeous – then it’s a big gulp before racing to the foot of the slope.
With its dramatic coastlines, intense mountain ranges, and purpose-built adventure activities, those with a daring edge will love every second here
While there are no elite sports teams in the area, traditional field sports can still be enjoyed at a grassroots level. Those seeking to watch a healthy bit of afternoon competition can head to Llandudno Junction which has both a men’s and women’s football team. Over in Colwyn Bay, the town’s cricket club gets a healthy regular attendance, especially for Glamorgan County’s annual North Wales match which is usually scheduled for summer. Speaking of summer, this is the prime time to soak up the sun on the fairways of Conwy Golf Club. Visitors to this historic course, which held the Ryder Cup Wales Seniors Open in 2012 and 2008, can reserve some tee time in groups of 16 and more.
Those for whom running is their thing, Conwy county has dozens of races to get the heart pumping. Snowdonia Half Marathon takes runners on a 13-mile run through the foothills of the mountains from its start line in Llanrwst. Another is Trail Betws, a series of 5k and 10k trail races and challenges through the forest. Then in Conwy town, a park run takes place every Saturday at the RSPB Nature Reserve from 9am.
Conwy isn’t lacking in destination sporting events either, with many taking place throughout the year. The stars of snooker have come to Venue Cymru in Llandudno for the Players Championship in recent years, which is televised to audiences across the UK. High-octane motoring throttles its way to the Great Orme in the autumn for the much-anticipated Wales Rally GB. A spectacular jump is the prelude to the rally-car race, before a beachside finish on Llandudno Promenade.
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