Welcome to Betwys Y Coed
This pretty little town claims to be the Gateway to Snowdonia. Swallow Falls is its biggest attraction- look for the Swallow Falls Hotel, opposite the small turnstile entrance (drive through the town on the A5). There's a big car park in the centre of the town, near the shops and railway station.
The walk from the centre of the town to the Falls, take you up through fir trees that were planted in the 1920s which now weigh over ten tonnes each (no, we don't know who weighed them). There's a series of walks you can do from here- all walks are considered moderate and take between one and half and four hours.
For a quick view, with handy parking nearby, head for the South bank- but for the full dramatic vista of water crashing down the black rocks to the Afon Clugwy river, climb up to the North bank on foot.
For a charming lunch stop, head for the Alpine Coffee Shop, right by the Station. The Conwy Valley Railway Museum-is across the footbridge from Betws-Y-Coed station, accessed via the platform, with its own cafe in the carriage. A miniature railway takes you on a 10 minute trip around the landscaped grounds, and indoors are a series of meticulous model railways and a model shop.
If Hornby train sets were never your thing, head to the information centre which is built around a courtyard made up of craft units. Here, artist Martin O’Neill makes and sells ceramics, and holds workshops. He also teaches ancient firing techniques back at his property, a few miles away.
The other unit is currently occupied by painter Daniel Crawshaw, who paints landscapes and mountain environments.
The Alison Bradley Gallery, next to the HSBC bank, sells originals, limited edition prints and cards, featuring local landscapes.
The 14th Century St.Michael's church , just behind the railway museum, is also worth a visit.