North Stack


Short circular walk with gorgeous coastal views

This short but exciting walk begins at the Holyhead Breakwater Country Park car park which is 2 miles from Holyhead town centre. The park was opened in 1990 and is situated on the site of an old quarry. This supplied the stone for the Holyhead Breakwater. At 1.5 miles in length, it is the longest breakwater in Europe and was constructed between 1846 and 1873. Backed by Holyhead Mountain, the park features stunning scenery, amazing view across the Irish sea and wonderful wildlife.

The walk encompasses short but steep ascents via rocky paths. This route is particularly beautiful in summer when heather and wildflowers create a colourful carpet over the landscape. With pretty flowers in all directions and the deep blue sea beyond, the vistas are amazing and will live long in the memory.

Duration: 1 hour from the car park to North Stack and back.

Terrain: Rocky coastal paths

South Stack from North Stack

Starting Out

The walk begins from the car park. Pass behind the information centre and through a gap in the hedge opposite and then walk past the small lake. You will see another gap in a hedge beyond the lake which you should walk through and then turn left onto the path. This leads steadily upwards and there are a few steep sections. In summer, when the heather and gorse are flowering, the scene is wonderfully colourful. On a sunny day, the vivid blue of the sea perfectly completes the amazing views. Seabirds circle above as you as you climb towards the top of the cliffs.

North Stack

The Fog Warning Station

After an enjoyable climb up through the striking landscape, you can take in the views across to the South Stack Lighthouse. Beneath you sits the retired fog warning station which was built in 1857 for Trinity House. Two large canons would fire warning shots in foggy conditions. These were later replaced by an electric foghorn. The foghorn finally ceased operation in 1986 when it was replaced by a new warning system at the South Stack Lighthouse. At the time of writing, the building is being used as an artist’s studio.

22 December 1944, an American B24 J Bomber Crashed into the sea near North Stack. The plane had been flying in dense fog, confusing the crew. Eight of the crew died in the crash but two survived. The aircraft still lies in the sea at a depth of 10-20 metres.

The Return

Walk down to the fog warning station and then continue on the path to the right. This is the nature trail that runs along the coast and back to the main path that you joined adjacent to the small lake. There are stunning views in every direction and you can observe seabirds including choughs, guillemots and puffins. Peregrine falcons can also be seen in the area. The route is mostly flat or downhill all the way back to the car park from where you can also walk over the mountain to the South Stack Lighthouse.


From the Woollen Mill, Take the A487 towards Caernarfon and then Bangor. Then, follow the signs for the A55 to Holyhead. Cross the Britannia Bridge and continue on the A55 until you reach Holyhead. Stay on this road which becomes the A5154 and then Beach Road. As you exit the town again, look out for the left turn towards the Breakwater Country Park. The signage here is poor!