Which hiking trails in Snowdonia are known for their breathtaking waterfalls?

Snowdonia, or Eryri in Welsh, is a place of diverse landscapes and unspoiled beauty. Nestled in the northwest corner of Wales, it is home to the highest peak, Snowdon, and a plethora of stunning waterfalls. The national park offers a multitude of hiking trails, each with its unique allure. However, certain trails stand out for their enchanting waterfalls, offering hikers an unrivaled experience of nature's majesty. If you're looking for a memorable hike, rich with the sight and sound of cascading water, Snowdonia has much to offer. We'll now introduce you to five walking trails in Snowdonia, each known for its breathtaking waterfalls.

Aber Falls

Located within the boundaries of the Snowdonia National Park, Aber Falls is a striking waterfall that cascades from a height of 120 feet. The well-trodden path leading to it is an easy walk, ideal for families and beginner hikers. As you near the falls, the path becomes slightly steeper, but the sight of the waterfall through the trees is well worth the effort.

The route to Aber Falls begins at Abergwyngregyn, a small village steeped in history. The trail winds through lush woodland and open fields, offering stunning views of the surrounding mountains. Along the way, information panels provide interesting facts about the area's history and wildlife. Aber Falls is undoubtedly one of Snowdonia's most popular waterfall walks, combining natural beauty with easy accessibility.

Snowdon Waterfall Trail

If you're seeking a more challenging hike with the reward of a waterfall, the Snowdon Waterfall Trail is a fantastic option. It begins in the village of Llanberis and follows a well-marked path up the slopes of Snowdon. The trail is steep and rocky in parts, requiring sturdy footwear and a good level of fitness.

The highlight of this trail is undoubtedly the waterfall, which cascades down the mountainside with Snowdon's peak as a dramatic backdrop. The sight of water tumbling over rocks, framed by verdant vegetation, is a spectacular sight. This trail combines the thrill of a mountain hike with the tranquil beauty of a waterfall, making it a favourite among more adventurous hikers.

The Llyn Idwal Circular Walk

The Llyn Idwal Circular Walk is a moderate 3-mile route that offers stunning views of a glacial lake and a series of waterfalls. The path begins at the Ogwen Cottage car park and follows a well-marked trail around Llyn Idwal, a lake nestled in a hollow formed by a glacier.

Along the path, you'll encounter several waterfalls cascading down the steep mountainsides. After a rainfall, these waterfalls swell and roar, creating an awe-inspiring spectacle. This easy circular walk is suitable for most people, offering a mix of mountain and waterfall views that make it a must-do when visiting Snowdonia.

The Aberglaslyn Pass Walk

The Aberglaslyn Pass Walk is a relatively easy trail that takes you along the banks of the River Glaslyn, which rushes through a gorge lined with dense woodland. The highlight of this path is the series of waterfalls that punctuate the river's course.

As you walk, you'll enjoy close-up views of the waterfalls, which range from gentle cascades to thunderous torrents. The path can be slippery in wet weather, so sturdy footwear is essential. This route is popular with families, who appreciate the easy access to the river and the joy of discovering a new waterfall around every bend.

The Betws-y-Coed Waterfall Walk

The Betws-y-Coed Waterfall Walk is a popular trail that leads to the Swallow Falls, a spectacular multi-tiered waterfall. The path is well-marked and easy to follow, making it suitable for families and hikers of all abilities.

The route begins in the charming village of Betws-y-Coed and follows the River Llugwy to the falls. As you walk, you'll enjoy lovely views of the river and surrounding woodland. When you reach Swallow Falls, you’ll be struck by the power and beauty of the water as it plunges over the rocks into the river below. The sight and sound of this waterfall is truly mesmerizing, making the Betws-y-Coed Waterfall Walk a must-do when visiting Snowdonia.

The Watkin Path

The Watkin Path is one of the most challenging but rewarding hikes leading to the highest peak in Wales, Mt. Snowdon. This trail is known for the stunning waterfalls of the Afon Cwm Llan river that accompany you as you ascend. The path starts at the car park nestled in the Nantgwynant Valley and quickly takes you through verdant woodland where you first encounter the cascading waterfalls. These waterfalls, with their crystal clear waters, are a sight to behold, adding a refreshing element to the strenuous hike.

Further along the Watkin Path, you cross a series of picturesque bridges with more opportunities to spot spectacular waterfalls. The path, marked by periodic stone pillars, is steep and strenuous, with an elevation gain that requires a decent level of fitness. However, the scenic beauty of the waterfalls, the panoramic views of the Snowdonia National Park, and the accomplishment of summiting Wyddfa Snowdon make this trail a favourite among experienced hikers.

Cadair Idris via the Fox’s Path

Known for its dramatic landscapes, the Cadair Idris via the Fox’s Path is another trail in Snowdonia National Park that offers the reward of a waterfall. This difficult, steep, and often slippery path requires careful navigation, but the sight of the waterfall, known as Rhaeadr Ddu, is well worth the journey.

Starting from the car park at Minffordd, the trail takes you through a mix of woodland and open mountain terrain. As you ascend, you’ll follow the river, and the sound of the waterfall becomes louder. The sight of Rhaeadr Ddu, meaning 'Black Waterfall' in Welsh, is awe-inspiring, as the water plunges dramatically over a dark rock face into a serene pool below. With its mossy rocks and lush greenery, this waterfall provides a mystical, tranquil ambiance that perfectly complements the rugged challenge of this hike.

Remember: Whether you’re a seasoned hiker seeking elevation gain or a family looking for a gentle woodland walk, Snowdonia offers a trail for everyone. With the enchanting sound of water cascading down rocks and the spectacular sight of waterfalls, these trails provide a sensory feast that is sure to leave a lasting impression. So, lace up your hiking boots, pack your camera, and prepare yourself for an adventure in the heart of North Wales.


Snowdonia, or Eryri National Park, is undoubtedly a hiker's paradise. The diversity of trails, from the easily accessible paths at Aber Falls and Betws-y-Coed, to the more challenging Snowdon Waterfall Trail and Watkin Path, offers something for every level of hiker. Each trail offers a unique perspective of the park’s breathtaking waterfalls, whether it’s the multi-tiered Swallow Falls, the spectacular Rhaeadr Fawr of Aber Falls, or the hidden gems along the Llyn Idwal Circular Walk.

With proper planning, suitable footwear, and respect for the environment, these trails promise an exhilarating exploration of Snowdonia’s natural beauty. As you walk these trails, you will understand why this region is a treasured part of North Wales, offering an unrivaled blend of majestic peaks, lush woodlands, and mesmerizing waterfalls.