01690 720214

The Big Christmas Walk (9-10 Dec)

Course Overview

Following the success of last years Big Christmas Walk, we're planning to celebrate Christmas in an even bigger way.
We're dedicating the entire centre to this relaxing festive weekend walking event.
It's your chance to join us at Plas y Brenin for a little bit of Christmas cheer and plenty of laid back, scenic walking.
Whether you've walked in Snowdonia before or you've never visited the area this weekend is a great chance for you to get out into the Welsh mountains in good company.
You'll arrive on Friday evening when you'll sign up to the following day's walk choosing from a menu of carefully selected routes. The guided walks on offer will range from 'nice and gentle' to 'highly challenging', allowing you to decide what level you'd like to walk at and how hard you want to work.
When you come down off the hill on the Saturday you'll join the other groups to enjoy a glass of mulled wine and freshly baked mince pies as you gaze out at the Snowdon horseshoe from the comfort of our bar. Then, if you'd like to, you'll have the chance to attend a light hearted talk before dinner. Afterwards you'll sit down to a hearty traditional Christmas dinner and possibly even enjoy a drop of our locally brewed real ale.
On Sunday morning you'll head out on another walk, again selecting the appropriate level from the available list. At the end of the day's walking, you'll return to Plas y Brenin for freshly baked cakes before leaving us on Sunday evening.

Experience Required

no experience necessary

Scheduled Dates

Detailed Course Notes

You should be 18 years old to attend this course.

Here are examples of walks that maybe offered during the weekend, these may be different on the day depending on weather conditions and how everyone is feeling. Be rest assured there will be plenty of choice and our guides will make sure you enjoy two fantastic days out in the mountains of Snowdonia.


Low level walks approximately 3-5 miles with a few hundred metres of ascent. You generally be walking on well-trodden footpaths. Take along some money for a possible cafe stop.

  1. Llanberis Slate Quarries/ Padarn Country Park

  2. Crimpau

  3. Valley Walk to cafe in Betws y Coed

  4. Walk round Llyn Idwal


Higher level walks with a plan to ascend a peak. The distance will be up to 5 miles with an ascent of approximately 500m, walking on tracks and footpaths.

  1. Yr Aran

  2. Cnicht

  3. Y Garn

  4. Moel Siabod


High level walks with a plan to ascend one of Snowdonia's substantial peaks. These walks will typically take in a variety of terrain both on and off marked footpaths. The distance covered will be approximately 5 miles plus, however the amount of ascent will exceed 600m if conditions allow. Due to the nature of the terrain you will require a good level of hill fitness.

  1. Carneddau

  2. Glyderau

  3. Snowdon

  4. Tryfan

What's Included In The Price?

Whether you choose to stay with us or you have alternative accommodation nearby, the following items are included in the total cost.

    Free tea, coffee or selected hot drinks for the duration of your visit
    Afternoon tea & homemade cakes
    Equipment hire
    Free (low-speed) wifi access in the bar & dining room
    In course transport
    Railway station pick up & drop off (please call to arrange)
    Parking with CCTV surveillance
    Free use of climbing wall, gym, MTB skills course & rolling pool

    If you choose to stay with us, these items are also included in the total cost:

    Accommodation the night before your course
    Accommodation during your course
    Breakfast & evening meal
    Bar Lunch/packed lunch

Accommodation For This Course

Plas y Brenin Main House

Your course is based at Plas y Brenin, The National Mountain Sports Centre in Capel Curig, North Wales, LL24 0ET.

If you are staying with us,

If you have chosen to add accommodation onto this course or holiday it is usually in the main house in a comfy en-suite room (normally shared with another guest). Each room has tea and coffee making facilities and all bed linen and towels are provided.

This includes accommodation the night before your first day. Your room will be available from 6pm. On your last day you will need to vacate your room by 10am. It is sometimes possible to arrange to stay an extra night please phone 01690 720214 for availability and cost.

Secure storage facilities, showers and toilets are available for you to use on your departure day once you have checked out of your room should you need them, please ask at reception.

Also included, if you chosen to add accommodation, are all your meals - breakfast, packed lunch, afternoon tea and freshly baked cakes and a three course evening meal. Please bear in mind an evening meal is not provided on the night before your course or on the last day of your course but our bar will be serving meals from 7.00pm until 8.45pm.

If you are are not staying with us but coming in each day,

If you choose to come in daily for your course or holiday you will need to arrive ready for a 9am welcome talk on the first day. For the rest of your course or holiday you will need to be here for 9.15am. We return from a full day of activity, usually in time for tea and cakes at 5pm (included).

There are more activities from 5.30 - 6.30 on some days of your course or holiday, please check on the first day.

For most of our awards and qualification courses there will be further evening sessions on some days which you need to attend, please check on the first day.

There is an 8pm adventure talk by one of our coaches on Saturday, Monday and Wednesday evenings which you are welcome to come to. Find out more about the upcoming talks here.

On the final day you will be finished by 5pm.

For courses based on-site our bar will be serving lunches from 12pm until 2pm or you are welcome to bring a packed lunch.

If your course is based away from the centre then you will need to bring a packed lunch with you. Each evening our bar serves evening meals from 7pm until 8.45pm if you wish to eat here.

You can arrange to have any of the following meals - breakfast, packed lunch and a three course centre dinner, by contacting our customer services team on 01690 720214 or

follow this link for more details

What Equipment Do You Need To Bring?

  • Warm outdoor wear - at all times of year e.g. walking trousers (shorts in summer), thermal layers/base layers, fleeces, good quality walking socks

  • Warm hat, gloves, neck gaiter/buff, sun hat

  • Walking boots

  • Rucksack liner (e.g. rubble bag or dry bag)

  • Day rucksack (min 30 litres)

  • Gaiters (optional)

  • Drinks bottle

  • Flask

  • Lunch Bag/Box

  • Personal first aid kit

  • Head torch (winter months)

  • High factor sunscreen

  • Midge repellant

  • Notebook and pen

The following items are available for you to borrow free of charge from our equipment stores if you don't have your own.

  • Walking boots

  • Day rucksack

  • Gaiters (optional)

  • Waterproof jacket and trousers

Customer Reviews For This Course

Excellent Weekend

Karen Jones

Initial booking was easy and the room was easy to locate, very nice warm room with all the essentials provided. All the information required to start the weekend was provided and the walks were displayed to tempt us. I decided to do a moderate walk on the Saturday up Moel Siabod. We were assigned Lou and she explained what we were going to be doing and the equipment we would need including crampons. I didn't borrow any kit but part of our group did and I think a few made mistakes with incorrect fitting boots, cold feet expand later in the day. I have never experienced walking on a boulder field before and felt very comfortable following Lou who was very calm and patient.
The following day the weather was less than pleasant so we decided to do the Llanberis Quarries, interesting tour then onto the quarries. Greg was a font of knowledge of the place and Mike very patient when I found the slate steps a bit daunting.
It would be nice to have a break out area where you can enjoy a drink in more comfortable seating, we did experience rather enthusiastic attendees who had been in the bar sometime and as a group we decided to relocate to one of our rooms.
Good food and plenty of it, excellent leadership and warm accommodation. I think our group will be back next year.

Another excellent weekend from the PYB crew

Carl Sprake

Another excellent weekend from the Plas Y Brenin crew. And a weekend of two halves in terms of the weather. On the Saturday Rusty and Greg took us up the South Ridge of Snowdon in truly winter conditions. Although we did not need crampons, the ice axes were good to have, with deep snow on the ground. Crossing the ridge, covered in snow was a fantastic experience.

We got back to the center in time for mulled wine and mince pies. A quick (but powerful and hot) shower and we were ready for dinner. This being the big Christmas walk this meant the full Christmas dinner. As usual the PYB kitchen crew did a great job catering for so many hungry mouths.

Sunday dawned wet and windy. A few brave and hardy souls ventured up on to the Carneddau and Glyders but went with Lou and Carl to Cwm Bychan. Lou led the whole group from the car park at Pont Aberglaslyn up to the head of the valley, where Carl led us up to the summit of Moel y Dyniewyd. We did not linger as the wind was very strong. Instead we hastened to catch up with the rest of the group in Beddgelert, where we visited Gelert's grave and continued back to the bus via the Pass of Aberglaslyn - an interesting and exciting path next to the river.

Back to the bus and back to the center for a surprise. Despite having been to PYB for several courses I did not know they had separate showers available. So, having checked out of our room in the morning we were able to make use of the showers and refresh ourselves before heading home.

Great weekend to catch up with friends


A friend booked this as a catchup weekend and it was probably the best weekend of the festive period. Learnt some winter skills on the Saturday, then put them into action in the snow on the Sunday. The Christmas dinner Saturday night was lovely. As well as sharing the adventure with old friends, have made some new ones and hope to do it again in 2013!


Lew Riches

Absolutely outstanding. Every aspect of the 2 days was handled with exceptional professionalism, that includes reception people, bar man, guides, catering people and of course the head man. A really outstanding experience.
The first walk up and down Moel Siabod was breath takingly scary towards the summitt in the snow, Cath and Christina prepared us and guided us safely through quite dangerous conditions. I can't remember having such total confidence in a team leader/guide.
The talk that evening by Stuart put my rigours of the day into a different context. remarkable man, remarkable. Liked his presentation style as well. Inspired me to find a climbing wall and get lessons.
Sid's guided walk the next day to Trefin was again very well guided, not as challenging as Moel Siabod which is why we chose it. Good cafe at the end.
The whole structure of the first day from breakfast to full course briefing to team briefing then kit inspection with suggested kit changes gave me so much confidence both in the organisation and the guides.
We stayed in the Farmhouse, superb, would want to stay there again in preference to the main building.
I'm struggling for words now so I'll close by saying it has been the best value, most positively challenging 2 days of outdoor activity I've had in my lifetime.
Thank you.
Lew Riches

The Big Christmas Walk

Colin Little

Attended the big christmas walk which was an excellent chilled out weekend and given the elements the brenin staff proved to be very flexible in enabling people to meet their personal goals for the weekend by keepingn the course content under constant review. The guide for my group was Paul both days and his personal style was laid back while still teaching as much as was appropriate given the group and the conditions. This made the days on the hill enjoyable, informative yet still challenging.

Best Christmas Ever

Kathryn Rickers

Have just returned from a fabulous weekend at PYB! We knew it would be a good one, having done a walking weekend in the summer, but it really did surpass our expectations. I know the staff at PYB cant take credit for the weather, but the extreme snow fall on the Friday night helped to making the weekend such a sucess.
As always the staff at PYB were fab, picking us up from Betwys when we couldnt get the car any further in the snow, digging a path up to our room and generally being friendly, informative and professional. This attitude was across the board from the reception staff, to the groundman, servery staff and instructors. And those mince pies we had on the Saturday aftrenoon were seriously THE best mince pies ever!
If any of you reading this were unfortunate enough to have had to cancel this weekend because of the weather, you missed a great weekend, so see if you can get on the one in January, you mightnt get the mince pies but im sure the rest of the weekend will match up to this one.
Many thanks to Keith, Adam, Dino and all the staff for laying on such a fab weekend for us, Merry Christmas!

Plenty of Snow

The Big Christmas Walk

I thoroughly enjoyed the weekend. Two good days walking even if the first day, understandably, was a little short.
I have always thought that access to the Guides makes the trips to PYB worthwhile and their determination to get to the centre with the roads being so awful was evident. Seeing the staff spending so much time digging the cars out of the snow with no fuss showed how service at PYB is part of the overall ethos.
I didn't go for the Christmas theme myself so it didn't matter - but I am not sure that a Christmas cracker with a turkey dinner made this a Christmas holiday. I wouldn't have got involved in much if it had been there but some Christmas music / entertainment at dinner with a glass of something might have been appropriate. Not the usual sort of thing, I know.
I have recommended PYB before and would recommend it to a wider audience with this sort of introduction to walking weekends.
Well done.

Not found what you were looking for?

You can hire one of our coaches instructors or guides from only £250 per day. They'll tailor the day to suit your aims and aspirations perfectly.
You can enjoy one to one coaching for that cost or if you get together as a group, depending on the activity, you can split that cost between up to 6 of you. If you are a group we can run any of our courses on a date that suits you and your friends. Or you could just write your own agenda for a week or weekend and we'll price it up for you - with or without accommodation. What's more, just like out normal course fees, our private instructor hire charge covers all your equipment too. Click on the link below to fill in a request form and one of our coaches will call you back (or e-mail if you'd prefer) to discuss things in detail with you.

Fill in a Callback Form

Got A Date Available - Need An Adventure To Match?

Contact our team on 01690 720214 or email - they will be happy to help you find something perfect.

Adventure Sports
Coaching Conference

Adventure Sports Coaching ConferenceOur inaugural Adventure Sports Coaching Conference will seek to explore the role of coach developers in adventure sports performance.


Christmas and New YearOn behalf of all the team at Plas y Brenin, we would like to wish you a very Merry Christmas and a H....


Scottish Winter Courses 2018Starting January 2018, our Scottish Winter courses are timed to make the most of the incredible wint....


Winter WarmersAs the nights begin to draw in and the temperature starts to drop, Plas y Brenin are pleased to offe....


Peak Performance For Plas y Brenin Paddling TeamWe are delighted to announce that we've launched an exciting new partnership with kayak clothing man....


BMC Women Outdoors Week 5-15 Aug 2017Come and get active for the BMC's Women Outdoors Week here at Plas y Brenin. We have talks, activiti....

What's On In Our bar?

Our friendly and lively bar is open to the public. From talks and lectures to film nights and live music, there's always something going on. Find out what's coming up next here

Adventure Sport
Summer Camps (Age 12-17)

Summmer Camps For Young People Aged 12-17Young climbers, mountaineers, paddlers and mtb riders aged 12-17. Develop your outdoor skills with our top coaches on one of our residential summer camps.

Enhanced Learning Credits

Enhanced Learning CreditsThe Enhanced Learning Credit Administration Service offers funding for armed forces personnel. Plas y Brenin is able to accept ELCAS funding for a few specific non residential courses.

Weather Forecast, Tides and Surf Conditions

Find out what the weather's doing in North Wales over the next five days.

Adventure Map

Working alongside UCLan
to educate
outdoor professionals

University Of Central LancashireFind out how we are working with one of the country's top universities to develop lasting careers in the outdoors.