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Dinorwic Quarry In Wales – A Complete Guide

Dinorwic Quarry is a large former slate quarry located between the villages of Llanberis and Dinorwig in Wales. Here is a complete guide.

How To Get To Dinorwic Quarry

Dinorwic Quarry is a large former slate quarry, now home to the Welsh National Slate Museum, located between the villages of Llanberis and Dinorwig in Wales.

On Foot

It’s a 3 mile (4.8km) walk from the village of LLanberis to Dinorwic Quarry.

Dinorwic Quarry covers more than 700 acres of land and there are many different walks you can enjoy around the quarry.

Car

An ideal starting point for exploring the quarry is the Padarn Country Park Car Park. The car park is located next the National Slate Museum. (LL55 4TY) Cost is £4 all day.

For those short on time, or that prefer everything to be organised for them, there are some awesome tours on Get Your Guide available to book in advance.

Dinorwic Quarry Entrance Fee

It is free to visit Dinorwic Quarry.

Dinorwic Quarry Opening Times

Dinorwic Quarry is open all day, every day.

We would not recommend visiting after dark as it could be dangerous.

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The boys following the Dinorwic Quarry walk from the car park.
Dinorwic Quarry Walk In Wales Quarry
Approaching the Mills.

Best Time To Visit Dinorwic Quarry

Dinorwic Quarry is a 700 acre site so there is plenty of space to wander through at any time of the year.

Some of the paths are a little steep but other than that it is relatively easy to walk around.

A trip to the National Slate Museum located nearby is worth a visit to get the history of the quarry.

It is recommended as a great place for unusual scenic photographs at any time of the year.

The scale of the quarry is awesome and you need to give yourself time to explore.

Dogs are welcome on leads.

What To Pack

Photography Camera

Tripod

Day Bag

Power Bank

Reusable Water Bottle

Sunscreen

Lightweight Rain Jacket

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The mountains upon mountains of slate.

Dinorwic Quarry History

Dinorwic Quarry was once a site bustling with activity and thousands of workers, and then the second largest quarry in the world.

It would be fair to say that the slate quarried at Dinorwic in the 1800’s helped to roof the world.

The quarry was owned by the Assheton-Smith family and later another branch of the same family called Duff.

Many of the quarrymen came from the local area. However, some men travelled across from North Wales to work at Dinorwic.

A large number came from Anglesey, and in the 1800’s a man’s journey from Anglesey could start at 3am. It would involve a 10 mile walk, a ferry crossing, a further walk, a train journey and finally a climb up to the rock face.

Travelling to Dinorwic at the beginning of the week was tough enough, even before the days work began. 

Those who travelled from other parts of Wales often stayed on site during the week and travelled home to see their families at the weekend.

From the 1920’s buses were introduced and transport to and from the quarry became a lot easier for the workers.

Including the quarry itself, the complex covered an area of roughly 1km x 500m. 

Dinorwig remained under the ownership of the same family until its closure and sale in 1969.

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A closer look at the Dinorwic Quarry slate.
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The old pulley that would transport slate up and down.
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Some of the cliffs at Dinorwic Quarry.

What To Expect At Dinorwic Quarry In Wales

Now home to the Welsh National Slate Museum, a Dinorwic Quarry walk can be an interesting way to spend an afternoon in Wales.

We visited after our trip to Aber Falls on our Wales itinerary, and starting from the car park, you simply follow the trail to Allt Ddu.

Allt Ddu was part of the Dinorwic quarrying area which was operating prior to 1771, and the route many workers would class as the ‘entrance to their workplace’.

You can then follow the Dinorwic Quarry walking route up to Ardal Mills, a building that once housed one of Dinorwig’s slate mills. It covers the same area as two football pitches and its size reflects the ambitions of the quarry owners.

The mills were unpleasant places to work. They were cold and covered in dust. In fact, there were so many accidents at Dinorwic that from the 1860’s the quarry had its own hospital.

Follow the trail some more until finally you’ll arrive at the Dinorwig viewpoint. This viewing point will give you spectacular views over Anglesey and Llanberis and then up to Snowdon.

When the quarry shut in 1969 all the equipment was auctioned off. The small steam locomotives were all sold for preservation but there was little interest in the rest of the machinery or buildings.

Consequently, there is lots left to see around the 700 acre site, including old miners cottages, rail tracks and rusted machinery. 

The National Slate Museum is a living working museum housed in the industrial Victorian workshops that once serviced and maintained Dinorwic Quarry.

The museum is worth a visit to get an idea of the history of Dinorwic Quarry before walking through it. Open 10am – 4pm Sunday to Friday. Entry is free.

Next up on the Wales itinerary was a big drive down the West coast to Llangrannog Beach.

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Ardal Mills was the size of two football pitches.
Dinorwic Quarry Mills In Wales Quarry
An old photo of the workers in Ardal Mills.
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Some of the views from the top of the Quarry.
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A solid day and a solid Dinorwic Quarry walk.

Where To Stay In North Wales

Luxury

Cottage Apartment by Seaside Llandudno

Situated in Llandudno, just 400 yards from Llandudno North Shore Beach, Cottage Apartment by Seaside Llandudno features beachfront accommodation with a terrace and free WiFi.

The property has city views and is less than 0.6 miles from Llandudno Pier and a 7-minute walk from Leisure Parks.

The apartment features 2 bedrooms, 1 bathroom, bed linen, towels, a flat-screen TV, a dining area, a fully equipped kitchen, and a patio with garden views.

Guests at the apartment can enjoy hiking and skiing nearby, or make the most of the garden.

Mid-Budget

Belmont Llandudno

Situated in Llandudno in the Gwynedd Region, 200 yards from Llandudno Pier, Belmont Llandudno features a terrace and guests can enjoy the on-site bar.

Each room has a flat-screen TV. You will find a kettle in the room. Every room is equipped with a private bathroom equipped with a bath or shower. Extras include free toiletries and a hairdryer. Belmont Llandudno features free WiFi .

There is a 24-hour front desk at the property.

The hotel also offers bike hire. Llandudno General Hospital is 1.1 miles from Belmont Llandudno, while Leisure Parks is 100 yards away.

Budget

No 6 Quality Guesthouse

Located in Llandudno, within 450 yards of Llandudno Pier and 550 yards of Leisure Parks, No 6 Quality Guesthouse provides accommodation with a shared lounge and a garden, and free WiFi throughout the property. The guest house features family rooms.

At the guest house, every room is equipped with a wardrobe, a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom.

A Full English/Irish breakfast is available daily at No 6 Quality Guesthouse.

For more places to stay in Wales, you can check the latest prices on Booking.com.

Planning Your Trip

Book Your Flight

Use Skyscanner to find a cheap flight. 

They search websites and airlines around the globe to find you the best possible routes and prices.

Book Your Accommodation

Use Booking.com to find the best accommodation deals.

They consistently return the cheapest rates on everything from guesthouses to hotels for all of your budget needs.

Don’t Forget Travel Insurance

Use SafetyWing to find the best travel insurance for you.

They provide travel and medical incident insurance built specifically for digital nomads.

Travel insurance will protect you against illness, injury, theft, and cancellations.

Book Your Tours & Activities

Use GetYourGuide to book your activities in advance.

They sell the best tours, excursions and activities to attractions around the world.

Conveniently book, download and access your tickets on the move all from your mobile. 

Book Your Rental Car

Use RentalCars.com to find the best deals on rental cars in the area.

They compare all major car rental companies and allow you to easily book the perfect vehicle for your trip.

Buy Those Last Minute Bits

Use Amazon to buy everything you need for your adventure.

They offer next day delivery and you can use my travel packing checklist to make sure you haven’t forgotten anything.


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