Wales may be a small country but it packs a big punch when it comes to adventure travel. There are many experiences in Wales that take advantage of its wild and rugged landscape. Most famous of these is probably the ziplining that tourists can experience in and near Snowdonia. But this spring, an adventure travel company called Gaia Adventure have introduced a thrill-seeker experience that has never before been offered to novices – cliff camping.
Cliff camping is nothing new to experienced campers and mountaineers but to regular campers it may seem surprising or even practically impossible. Cliff camping – literally sleeping on a suspended stretcher-like platform swaying on sturdy ropes above the swirling sea 200 ft below – could be the ultimate camping experience for someone with a good head for heights and an adventurous spirit. Imagine looking down on the waves below as the sun sets spectacularly before you.
The portaledges (portable ledges) can sleep up to three people. Though the experience can be called-off in extreme weather, the kit can handle most of what the Welsh weather can throw at it and the waterproof covering will keep you dry and cosy throughout the night. You may even find that you sleep extremely well with the soothing sounds of the wind and the water. You will learn the ropes doing some climbing and abseiling before you descend to the ledge for the night and an experienced guide will be on hand on a neighbouring ledge the whole time in case you need any help or reassurance. Most people though will find that though the ledge feels strange when they first arrive, it will begin to feel safe and more normal surprisingly quickly.
All you need to bring with you are warm clothes, a sleeping bag, and a camera to make sure you can document the whole experience. The organisers will provide everything else that you will need, including warm drinks and a hot breakfast in the morning, cooked on a camp stove that hangs off the edge of the ledge. One night’s camping, including the whole experience, will set you back £450 for one person, £500 for a couple or £190 each for a group of three. All ages and abilities are welcome.
If you don’t think you could manage a night’s sleep on the portaledge then you could still experience the ledge and cliff-climbing on an afternoon visit. There are plenty of other lovely places to camp around north Wales, from wild camps in the Snowdonian mountains to gentle beach-side pitches. If you are in an adventurous mood then why not visit one of the other adventure attractions nearby, including the recent addition of Zip Below – an underground ziplining adventure that is not for the faint-hearted. Come and get a taste of the wildness of wonderful Wales.