Following the busy Easter holidays, you might have seen social media or news articles of long queues on the summit of Snowdon. There’s no escaping that Snowdon is the the busiest mountain in the country (and very possibly, the world) but that doesn’t mean you have to get stuck in a queue. It is true that queues form at the summit of Snowdon regularly on sunny Saturdays, bank holidays and during the school holidays and a queue reaching the bottom of the steps will mean around a one-hour wait. However, read on for five ways to avoid the queues on Snowdon.

1. Don’t climb Snowdon on a Saturday

Did you know that each Snowdon path has a counter at the bottom? Every year the National Park publish detailed visitor numbers so we know exactly which is the busiest day of the week and it probably won’t come as a surprise to learn that it’s Saturday. By a big margin too. If we look at 2021’s visitor statistics (the last ‘proper’ year before the pandemic), a quarter of all people climbed Snowdon on a Saturday. Around a fifth chose Sunday with the other five days of the week evening out around a tenth each. So you’re most likely to get stuck in a queue if you decide to Climb Snowdon on a Saturday. If the weekend really is your only option, choose Sunday instead but even better, come back on a Tuesday.

2. Start your climb early (or late)

In the summer, it gets light as early as 5am so why not drag yourself out of bed as early as you’re able and get on the mountain first thing? If you know it’s going to be a busy day, the earlier you can start the better. We recommend getting going for 7am or even earlier for your best chance of avoiding the queues. Conversely, it doesn’t get dark until around 9.30pm so setting off early to mid afternoon to arrive at the summit around 5pm will also likely to mean you’ll be on your own up there. However don’t leave it too late in the day to avoid having to walk down in the dark.

3. Skip bank holidays

Unsurprisingly, visitor numbers in North Wales increase massively over bank holiday weekends and a big number of those holidaymakers head to the mountains to climb Snowdon. If it’s a sunny bank holiday you’re going to hit big queues at the summit. You wouldn’t expect to have Bicester Village or Cheshire Oaks to yourself on a bank holiday weekend so why think Snowdon is going to be any quieter? Generally, the Saturday is the busier day of a bank holiday weekend followed by Sunday and then bank holiday Monday’s are often the quietest. Tip 2 above will ensure you can still enjoy the mountain if you start early enough. Or go to the beach instead!

4. Hire a local mountain guide

Our guides really do know the mountain better than anyone so use that knowledge to your advantage. Professional, experienced mountain guides will be able to take you on lesser-known paths and give you more advice on how best to beat the queues. For example it’s possible to climb Snowdon from the village of Llanberis without hardly seeing another human being for 90% of the way! Ask a local guide about the ‘secret’ routes up Snowdon.

5. You don’t actually have to queue!

It’s a very British thing that whenever we see a line of people we just join the back. Queues on the summit of Snowdon are for those wanting their ‘summit selfie’. It’s important to understand that the entire summit cairn on which the pillar sits is completely artificial. You’ve still climbed Snowdon if you’ve made it that far so if there’s a big queue, simply walk past everyone and just do your photos in front of the cairn instead. However, don’t be tempted to cut the line, us Brits don’t like that and you’ll incur the wrath of an angry mob!

Join MountainXperience to climb Snowdon and be sure to avoid the queues! Our professional, experienced mountain guides will lead you safely to the top of the mountain (and back down again!) helping you stay clear of the queues.