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Fascinating Brecon Beacons stargazing spots holiday cottages

Fascinating Brecon Beacons stargazing spots

Laura Mackenzie 03 February 2023

Wondering where you can go stargazing in the Brecon Beacons? Then you’ve come to the right destination! 

With its low levels of light pollution, the Bannau Brycheiniog / Brecon Beacons National Park has been celebrated for its darkness for over a decade - it was the fifth destination in the whole world to be granted International Dark Sky Reserve status in 2012. The breathtaking Bannau Brycheiniog / Brecon Beacons was also the first International Dark Sky Reserve in Wales.

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We've got some intergalactic inspiration for you; from starry showers over Sugar Loaf Mountain to lit-up skies reflecting off Llangorse Lake, these stargazing spots across the Brecon Beacons show you why this National Park is home to some of the very best stargazing in Wales. Imagine taking in a beautiful autumnal sunset before cosying up to stargaze at the infinite night sky.

For even more insight, learn more about Wales' delightfully dark skies and see what wonderful workshops and captivating courses are on offer on the Dark Sky Wales website.

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Usk Reservoir

Usk Reservoir

Cosy up with a picnic as the sun sets before setting up for an out-of-this-world night of sublime stargazing in the Brecon Beacons. The Usk Reservoir is protected from the light pollution of the South Wales Valleys, which makes it perfect for watching the night sky.  

The Usk Reservoir is surrounded by the Glasfynnedd Forest with a 5.5-mile waymarked route, ideal for walking and cycling with beautiful views of the Black Mountains. It can easily be reached from the Trecastle area, and there is plentiful parking and easy access. Alternatively, try a spot of fishing as the reservoir is highly regarded as one of the best still-water trout fisheries in Wales! 

Good to know:

  • GPS coordinates: SN 835285, N51.56.58, W03.41.55
  • Stay nearby: Usk cottages

Sugar Loaf Mountain

Sugar Loaf Mountain

Sugar Loaf Mountain is one of the highest peaks in the Black Mountains and offers spectacular scenic views across South Wales. Providing the backdrop for the historic market town of Abergavenny, fondly known as the gateway to Wales, Sugar Loaf Mountain is accessible from the main A40 road and has an excellent car park at its foot.

Enjoy fun-filled days exploring the great outdoors with plenty of walking and cycling options. Refuel at one of Abergavenny’s gorgeous gastropubs before experiencing an evening filled with starlight and wonder. 

Good to know:

  • GPS coordinates: SO 268167, N51.50.30, W03.03.34
  • Stay nearby: Wood Shack, sleeps 2

Llangorse Lake

Llangorse Lake

Resting peacefully between the Central Beacons and the Black Mountains lies Llangorse Lake, the largest natural lake in Wales. It’s accessible to curious stargazers with plenty of parking and provides astonishing views of the marvellous Milky Way, along with an abundance of other celestial bodies. 

Take to the lake in the daytime for a spot of wildlife watching, sailing, fishing or paddling. You can hire a dinghy, windsurfer, canoe, kayak, stand-up paddleboard, pedalo or rowing boat here for a fantastic day full of exhilarating activities before settling down to recharge with some superb stargazing together. 

Good to know:

  • GPS coordinates: SO 127270, N51.56.07 W03.16.13
  • Stay nearby: Tower House, sleeps 6 + 1 dog

Brecon Beacons National Park Visitor Centre

Stargazers

The Brecon Beacons Visitor Centre or the Mountain Centre as it is known locally, is a great place to gaze at the wonderful night sky. Take in the stunning views over Wales’ highest mountain, Pen-y-Fan, and learn all about this unspoiled landscape at the excellent exhibition before refreshing with a deliciously made meal at the quaint tearoom.

Alternatively, nearby Mynydd Illtud common offers leisurely ambles or bracing walks so why not lace up those walking boots, pack up a picnic and take in the fresh country air before cosying up for a night under the stars? 

Good to know:

  • GPS coordinates: SN 978264, N51.56.02, W 03.28.40
  • Stay nearby: Pen Y Glyn Barn, sleeps 14

Hay Bluff

Hay Bluff

Hay Bluff is the highest peak in the Black Mountains, known as Y Mynydd Du in Welsh, and overlooks the wonderous Wye Valley with terrific views over Powys and Shropshire. Well known for its bookshops, Hay-on-Wye is an ideal place to seek out some astronomy literature where you can find some great tips before taking in the night sky; it is also the closest town to Hay Bluff. 

The road over Gospel Pass leads you to the easily accessible car park at Hay Bluff, ready for your inspiring night under the stars. Gospel Pass is Wales’ highest road and is also thought to be the route that St Paul took while taking the bible to Wales, hence the interesting name.

Good to know:

  • GPS coordinates: SO 239373, N 52.01.43, W03.06.34
  • Stay nearby: Black Mountain Cabin, sleeps 2 + 1 dog

Llanthony Priory

Llanthony Priory

Once one of Wales’ great medieval buildings, Llanthony Priory offers pristine dark skies with a captivating backdrop of the now equally impressive ruins. Set in a dramatic location in the secluded Vale of Ewyas, it’s no wonder that this place was for the site of this iconic monastery.

Retreat to this special spot and enjoy the views into the Priory and upwards to the impressive Hatterrall Hill. You're sure to feel rejuvenated as you spend time stargazing at this peaceful place.

Good to know:

  • GPS coordinates: SO 288278, N51.56.41, W03.02.11
  • Stay nearby: The Old Smithy, sleeps 6 + 1 dog

Craig-y-nos Country Park and Craig Y Nos Castle

Craig-y-nos Country Park

For a fun family day out, Craig-y-nos Country Park is home to 40 acres of enchanting woodland, marvellous meadows, lovely lakes and pretty picnic areas. The country park makes up part of the historic grounds of the strikingly ornate Craig-y-nos Castle, the former home of the once-famous opera singer Adelina Patti, one of the greatest sopranos of all time.

Set in a dramatic location in the secluded upper Swansea Valley, you’ll feel galaxies away gazing up at the night sky from this romantic spot. 

Good to know:

  • GPS coordinates: SN 840161, N51.50.16, W03.40.29
  • Stay nearby: Penrock, sleeps 4 + 2 dogs

Stargazing FAQs

Yes, you can see the Milky Way on a clear night in the Brecon Beacons. You can also gaze above and be awe-struck by all the major constellations and dazzling nebulas. Perhaps you’ll be lucky enough to spot some magnificent meteor showers too!

Yes, there is an observatory in the Brecon Beacons. The Brecon Beacons Observatory is a public education observatory set right in the heart of the Brecon Beacons International Dark Sky reserve.

Autumn, winter and spring are the best seasons to stargaze as you get longer nights and more dark sky to gaze up at. Avoid full moons as the glow of the moonlight will wash out the starlight! This handy dark sky calendar will help you plan your stargazing experience month by month. 


Bannau Brycheiniog / Brecon Beacons stargazing map

Enjoy a night under the stars and plan your route to these top stargazing spots in the Brecon Beacons.

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Bannau Brycheiniog / Brecon Beacons stargazing accommodation

Brecon Beacons stargazing accommodation
Tower HouseSycamore BarnBeacons ViewThe Top Floor At Cantref House

After a mesmerising night of stargazing, cosy up in one of our comfortable cottages in the Brecon Beacons for a truly restful sleep.

Our cottage collection includes dog-friendly holiday accommodation, family-friendly stays, large group properties and romantic retreats where you can refresh and relax ready for more adventures in the Bannau Brycheiniog / Brecon Beacons.  

Browse our cosy Bannau Brycheiniog / Brecon Beacons cottages and find your perfect stargazing experience. 



Disclaimer: Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information at the time of writing, please ensure you check carefully before making any decisions based on the contents within this article.

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