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Narrow-gauge steam railway station, countryside views, gorgeous riverside setting. What's not to love?!

At the top of Lake Bala (Llyn Tegid) begins a magical journey into a rich historical and cultural past. Whether by train, by car or foot, the way winds alongside the banks of this top-notch lake, the largest freshwater lake in Wales. It continues through fresh, green rolling hills, framed by the three massive peaks of Benllyn, Arenig and Fawr.

Because of its situation, set among the windy hills, the lake is perfect for windsurfing and sailing. There are various slipways and launching places around the lake, but the main hub of activity is on the foreshore in front of the warden’s office, where you can get the permits you need.

 The bustling one-street market town of Bala (Y Bala), at the northern end of the lake, is a stronghold of the ancient Welsh language. With more than 80 per cent of the population speaking the region’s mother tongue, it’s useful to have a suitable local greeting or two up one’s sleeve. It’s a deeply traditional Welsh town and this area is a great place to catch a male voice choir. Try the village hall at Llanuwchllyn (at the other end of the lake to Bala) on Monday and Thursday nights or keep your ear to the ground – provided you understand Welsh.

 Seldom out of sight of the lake throughout its four-mile journey is a narrow-gauge railway line, operated by three steam locomotives. It begins its journey at Llanuwchllyn, and hugging the shoreline, makes its way to Bala. After the return journey, a visit to the signal box is an interesting diversion, where the stationmaster will demonstrate the original 1896 levers and lamps; an archaic confusion of wooden handles and outdated widgets.

The Rheilffors Lyn Tegid Cyf (Bala Lake Railway) is run almost entirely by volunteers and they’re always on the look out for willing helpers. So, if you’ve ever fancied driving a steam train or just blowing the whistle and waving the flag, become a member and live out your childhood dreams!

 To the left of this quaint old railway station is the unpronounceable Bwch-yn-uchaf campsite. It begins with a vast field of mown lawn, which is great for large tents and caravans. From here, there is a small drivable path that leads away from the main field and ablutions, and winds its way through two smaller enclaves of grass, bordered by a tree-lined shallow river, perfect for a spot of fishing or canoeing.

The narrow strip of riverside turf means that each pitch has an unobstructed view of the sparklingly clear river. There are portable loos and various water points in the middle of the three fields, which is handy if you don’t feel like the long-ish, but scenic, walk to the main ablution block.

 So, whether it’s sailing on the lake, walking in the mountains or simply a bit of R&R in a valley with a steaming good view, this peaceful spot has all the bases covered.

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The campsite owner says

Bwch-yn Uchaf Caravan and Camping Site is situated within Snowdonia National Park at the foot of the beautiful Aran and Arenig mountain range a mile from Llyn Tegid.

The site is on the edge of the picturesque village of Llanuwchllyn, which enjoys panoramic views of stunning scenery and is an ideal base to explore the areas many attractions including scenic walks (some of which start straight from the park).

The shallow sparklingly clear river Twrch runs alongside the entire length of our site (fishing is free to our guests) and is extremely popular with guests of all ages.  There is low light pollution and no traffic noises so all you can hear is the stream, sheep and sometimes the train passing by.   Also adjacent to the site is the Llanuwchllyn Narrow Gauge Railway Station with its open carriage journeys along the lake. A great way to fully appreciate the stunning scenery the area has to offer.

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