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Information » Environment » Conservation and Environment » National Parks

  • In 1949 an Act of Parliament was passed to create National Parks so that beautiful areas of countryside were protected for the public to enjoy

  • National Parks have two purposes - to allow people to visit and appreciate the beauty of the country but, more importantly, to conserve its natural beauty

  • As well as being areas for the public to visit, many people live and work in National Parks. Tourism is often the main industry, and many people are dependent on the Parks for their livelihoods

National Parks in Wales

Snowdonia

  • Snowdonia is probably the most famous of the Welsh National Parks, as it contains Snowdon which, at 1085m, is the highest mountain in England and Wales

  • 26,000 people live in the Snowdonia National Park and 65% of them speak Welsh

  • Glacial shaped valleys and mountains give Snowdonia a dramatic landscape, and the park is dotted with lakes and rivers

  • Estuary and coastline also make up the park, as well as Cadair Idris, another famous Welsh peak

The Brecon Beacons

  • The Beacons separate the rural countryside of mid-Wales from the industrial south

  • Inhabited by people for over 5,000 years, standing stones, cairns and ancient settlements can be found at sites throughout the area

Pembrokeshire Coast

  • Arguably the prettiest coastline in Wales, the Pembrokeshire coast is the only coastal National Park in Wales

  • Pembrokeshire is a very important area for wildlife and contains one of only three Marine Nature Reserves in the UK. It is home to sea birds, mammals and plant life, many of which are unique to Pembrokeshire

  • St David, the patron saint of Wales, lived in Pembrokeshire, and you can still visit the monastery he founded in St David's - Wales' smallest city

  • This area has also been shaped by human industry particularly from the 19th century, when mining was vital to the area. Evidence can be seen in mills, mines and industrial sites around the coast

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