Snowdon Walking Routes

Snowdon walking routes

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Snowdon, the highest peak in Wales and the highest point in the British Isles outside of Scotland, stands as a majestic sentinel in Snowdonia National Park. With an elevation of 1,085 meters (3,560 feet) above sea level, Snowdon is a prominent landmark known for its breathtaking beauty and outdoor adventures.

The mountain, known as “Yr Wyddfa” in Welsh, has a rich cultural and geological history. Its towering presence has inspired countless hikers, mountaineers, and artists for generations. The rugged terrain offers a range of Snowdon walking routes for all skill levels, from the challenging ascent of the Crib Goch arête for experienced climbers to the more accessible Miners’ Track and Pyg Track.

At the summit, a visitor can revel in the panoramic views that extend as far as Ireland on a clear day. The Hafod Eryri building provides shelter and sustenance, while offering insight into the mountain’s history and ecosystem. Nearby, the Snowdon Mountain Railway offers a less strenuous way to experience the summit.

There are numerous different  Snowdon walking routes.

Its essential to do some research and follow the Snowdon path that is the most suitable for the people in your party as they all differ in difficulty!

Here are some key points about Snowdon:

Elevation: Snowdon stands at an elevation of 1,085 meters (3,560 feet) above sea level. It is the highest point in Wales and England.

Hiking and Climbing: Snowdon paths attract a large number of visitors who come to hike or climb to its summit. There are several well-marked hiking trails, or “paths,” leading to the summit, catering to various skill levels. The most popular Snowdon walking routes include the Llanberis Path, Pyg Track, and Miners’ Track. For those seeking a more challenging ascent, there are also scrambling and climbing Snowdon walking routes available.

Summit Views: The summit of Snowdon offers stunning panoramic views of the surrounding Snowdonia National Park, including its rugged mountains, glacial valleys, and pristine lakes. On clear days, you can even see as far as Ireland and Scotland.

Rail Access: Visitors who prefer a less strenuous way to reach the summit and don’t wish to take part in a Snowdon walk can take the Snowdon Mountain Railway, a cogwheel railway that has been operating since 1896. The railway provides a comfortable and scenic journey to the top.

Geology and Natural Beauty: Snowdon is part of a geologically diverse area, and its landscape features a mix of rocky terrain, heather-covered moors, and lush valleys. During your Snowdon walks you will have the opportunity to experience  a variety of wildlife, including birds, mammals, and rare plant species.

Historical Significance: Snowdon has historical and cultural significance. It is associated with Welsh folklore and legends, including tales of giants and mythical creatures. Additionally, Snowdon has played a role in the cultural heritage of Wales, being a symbol of national pride and identity.

Conservation: Snowdonia National Park, where Snowdon is located, is a protected area known for its conservation efforts. The park strives to preserve its unique natural environment and promote responsible outdoor activities.

Visitor Centers: The surrounding area has visitor centers and facilities to provide information, guided tours, and amenities for those exploring Snowdon and taking part in Snowdon walks within the national park.

Weather Considerations: The weather on Snowdon can change rapidly, and conditions at the summit can be harsh, with strong winds and cold temperatures even in the summer. Visitors are advised to check weather forecasts and be well-prepared for Snowdons walks.

Snowdon is a magnificent mountain that offers a diverse range of experiences for nature lovers, hikers, and outdoor enthusiasts. Whether you seek a challenging hike to its summit or a leisurely ride on the railway, a visit to Snowdon is an opportunity to immerse yourself in the natural beauty and cultural heritage of North Wales. See below for the various Snowdon walking routes to choose the best one for you!

Details about Snowdon Walking Routes

Snowdon walking routes-LLlanberis Path

Llanberis Path is the easiest and longest of the six main paths to the summit of Snowdon. Originally, tourists were carried up this path on ponies and mules, and to this day it continues to be a pony path.

Distance: 9 miles (there and back)
Total Climb: 975m (3,199 ft)
Time: Approx 6 hours (there and back)
Start and Finish: Far end of Victoria Terrace, Llanberis, off the A4086
Map: OS Explorer OL17
Parking: Numerous car parks in Llanberis (LL55 4TD)
Sherpa Bus Stop: Llanberis Interchange

Snowdon walking routes-Miners Track 

Following the opening of the Llanberis pass in 1832, the Miners Path was built to carry copper from the Britannia Copper Works near Llyn Glaslyn to Pen-y-Pass, where it was then transported to Caernarfon. The mining came to an end in 1916, remains from the work can still be seen on the path to this day.

Distance: 8 miles (there and back)
Total Climb: 723m (2,372 ft)
Time: Approx 6 hours (there and back)
Start and Finish: Pen-y-Pass Car Park (SH 647 557 / LL55 4NY)
Map: OS Explorer OL17
Parking: If the car park is full and you are keen to walk from Pen-y-Pass you can use the Snowdon Sherpa Park and Ride Service running from Nant Peris and Llanberis car parks. Full timetables can be found on the Gwynedd Council website.
Sherpa Bus Stop: Pen-y-Pass Car Park

Snowdon walking routes-Pyg Track

There is some uncertainty about the origin of the word Pyg. It is believed that the path was named after Pen y Gwryd Hostel by climbers who stayed there. Another possible origin is that the path was named after Bwlch y Moch (the pass of pigs) since the path crosses it, as it is sometimes spelled as Pig in English. Or it could have been named Pyg due to the fact that this was a path used to carry pyg (black tar) from the Britannia Copper Works in Cwm Glaslyn. The guessing continues!

Distance: 7 miles (there and back)
Total Climb: 723m (2,372 ft)
Time: Approx 6 hours (there and back)
Start and Finish: Pen-y-Pass Car Park (SH 647 557 / LL55 4NY)
Map: OS Explorer OL17
Parking: From 1st April 2023 parking needs to be prebooked on the justpark app. If you havent booked and you are keen to walk from  Pen-y-Pass you can use the Snowdon Sherpa Park and Ride Service running from Nant Peris and Llanberis car parks. Full timetables can be found on the Gwynedd Council website.
Sherpa Bus Stop: Pen-y-Pass Car Park

Snowdon walking routes-Watkin Path

This path was named after Sir Edward Watkin, Liberal Member of Parliament and a railway entrepreneur. Watkin had a summer house by the start of the path and he was responsible for creating the path from South Snowdon Slate Quarry to Snowdon’s summit. Officially opened in 1892 by William Gladstone, the Prime Minister, on a boulder by the path which has been named after William Gladstone he addressed a crowd of over 2,000 people.

Distance: 8 miles (there and back)
Total Climb: 1,015m (3,330 ft)
Time: Approx 6 hours (there and back) 
Start an Finish: Pont Bethania Bridge Car Park, Nant Gwynant, off the A498 (SH 627 507/ LL55 4NL) 
Map: OS Explorer OL17
Parking: Pay and Display Pont Bethania Bridge Car Park (SH 627 507/ LL55 4NL)
Sherpa Bus Stop: Nant Gwynant Car Park

Snowdon walking routes-Rhyd Ddu Path 

This path used to be known as the Beddgelert Path since it was from this village that walkers started their journey to the summit.

Distance: 8.5 miles (there and back) 
Total Climb: 895m (2,936 ft)
Time: Approx 6 hours (there and back) 
Start and Finish: Rhyd Ddu Car Park (SH 571 526 / LL54 6TN)
Map: OS Explorer OL17
Parking: Pay and Display Rhyd Ddu Car Park (SH 571 526 / LL54 6TN)
Sherpa Bus Stop: End of Rhyd Ddu Car Park

Snowdon walking routes–Snowdon Ranger 

The path begins near the ‘Snowdon Ranger’ youth hostel, near Llyn Cwellyn.  John Morton the self proclaimed ‘Snowdon Ranger’ used the path to guide Victorian tourists to the summit. He also opened a tavern where the youth hostel site stands today, and called it the ‘Snowdon Ranger Inn’.

Distance: 8 miles (there and back)
Total Climb: 936m (3,071 ft)
Time: Approx 6 hours (there and back) 
Start and Finish: Llyn Cwellyn Car Park, off the A4085 (SH 564 551 / LL54 7YT) 
Map: OS Explorer OL17
Parking: Pay and Display Llyn Cwellyn Car Park (SH 564 551 / LL54 7YT)
Sherpa Bus Stop: Llyn Cwellyn Car Park

Snowdon Paths and Sherpa Bus Service

Planning your transport and parking should form an essential part of your plan for climbing Snowdon. With over ½ a million visitors every year visiting the mountain, car parks can often be full in the warmer months by 7am! If you can we suggest coming during the week rather than on a weekend, and avoiding school holidays. Late September and early October can be a great time to visit.

Details can be found in our paths guide below on the best parking and transport options for each path. If you plan on walking up the Pyg or Miners track we highly recommend using the Sherpa bus. You can view and download the Snowdon Sherpa Timetable from the Gwynedd Council website.

For up to date prices for the Sherpa bus to get you to the start of Snowdon walking route please see HERE!

Local taxi operators also offer services along popular routes including  Snowdonia Taxi and Taxi Arfon.

Mountain Guides

If you’re looking for guides to help you on the mountains and give you a memorable experience then please visit our activity page. There’s plenty to choose from including Anelu Aim Higher, RAW Adventures, Gradient Adventure and Bach Ventures.

Organised and Competitive Events and Charity Walks

Here are some interesting secrets about Snowdon.

  • In 1639 came the first recorded ascent of Snowdon, by Thomas Johnson.
  • Morris Williams, a miner, was the first to sell refreshments at the summit in 1838.
  • Edmund Hillary trained on Snowdon before conquering Mount Everest.
  • You can find a rare flower on Snowdon, The Snowdon Lily. A delicate, artic-alpine flowering plant which has grass like leaves. Although it has wide spread distribution in alpine and arctic regions, Snowdonia is its only known location within the UK. Here, they grow on north/north-east facing cliffs, and can be found in a few inaccessible ledges and rock faces, out of reach of grazing animals. It is thought to have survived on high mountains tops within Snowdonia since the end of the last ice age, on areas which remained free from ice sheets and glaciers. 
  • Snowdon is said to be the tomb of the giant Rhitta Gawr. Rhitta wore a cloak made of men’s beard and was killed by the legend King Arthur.


We would love to hear about your Snowdon walks during your stay with us. Send us some photos so you can feature on our social media page or tag us on yours! We make an excellent base for exploring Snowdonia and the surrounding area- see photo for some of our recent visiting guests at the Snowdon summit!

porthyraur guests climb snowdon

How about a sunrise walk up Snowdon whilst raising money for a good cause?

As I work for Myton Hospice this is a charity that is close to me heart. 

On 14th September 2024 Myton are running an event walking up Snowdon for sunrise to raise vital funds for all of the wonderful work that they do.

Myton Snowdon Sunrise Climb

Myton Hospice Snowdon Sunrise Climb

For other things to do when you stay with us please see


Places to Visit