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Wales occupies the western peninsula of the UK mainland and one of the four home nations or countries that comprises the UK. It shares a land border with England in the east, braces the Bristol Channel in the south and Irish Sea in the north and west. Across the Irish Sea is the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland. Wales comprises of three regions that include North Wales, Mid Wales and South Wales. It has a rugged coastline and a mountainous interior with higher peaks in the northern and central regions. Wales is home to 3.1 million people who call themselves Welsh with two-thirds of the population living in South Wales mainly in and around the cities of Cardiff, Swansea and Newport.

People & Culture

The majority of the people speak English but Wales is bilingual with English and Welsh being the official languages. Most Welsh speakers live in the northern and western regions and road signs across Wales are in both languages. You can hear Welsh spoken on Welsh TV channels, radio stations and the language taught in schools. Besides the Welsh language, Welsh Celtic culture is deeply rooted in mythology, legends, traditional music and dance, literature and the male voice choirs. Rugby is a popular sport in Wales and some consider it as the national sport of Wales.

Cardiff Food Festival by Gareth James

Wales as a Travel Destination

Wales is a tourist-friendly destination and the Welsh people are always welcoming towards outsiders. It offers visitors history, culture and beautiful sceneries that include rolling mountains, picturesque river valleys, surf-battered cliffs and stunning beaches. Wales is home to several protected unspoilt national parks featuring varied landscapes, diversities of fauna and flora and scenic walking trails to enjoy. However, Wales is more than just natural sceneries but also offers visitors the Welsh capital of Cardiff and other vibrant cities, charming laidback villages and the seaside resorts of Llandudno and Tenby.

Seaside resort of Llandudno by NoelWalley

Major Destinations in Wales

  • Cardiff is relatively a flat city located on the southern coast of Wales. It is the capital and largest city in Wales and popular with tourists for its history, culture, festivals and shopping.
  • Llandudno is a coastal town in North Wales. It is a Victorian-era seaside resort and retains an old world charm, which differentiates it from other seaside resorts in the UK.
  • Swansea is a coastal city located in the Gower Peninsula on the southern coast of Wales. It is the second largest city in Wales and the gateway to the Gower, an area designated as an ‘Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty’.
  • Tenby is a picturesque walled town on the southern Pembrokeshire coast. It is a premier seaside resort featuring beautiful beaches and scenic walking trails through the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park.

Along Cardiff Bay at night by Rtadams

Transport in Wales

Cardiff Airport in South Wales is the only international airport in Wales. Wales is a small country and the only flight within Wales is between Cardiff Airport and Anglesey Airport (North Wales), a distance of 330 km (205 miles) or about an hour by flight. Due to the topography, the rail and road infrastructure generally travel in an east-west rather than north-south direction. There are regular train services connecting the main Welsh cities of Cardiff, Swansea and Newport in South Wales. Traws Cambria operates long distance bus or coach services connecting North, Mid and South Wales. Other coach companies include Stagecoach (South Wales), First Cymru (South West Wales) and Arriva (North Wales).

Cardiff Airport by Blofeld of SPECTRE

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