LANDSCAPE PHOTOGRAPHY LOCATION GUIDES:
Best at / for: in any bright sun.
Best avoided: flat grey light.
Parking: free parking right at the location.
Access: easy walking is required.
Notes: very scenic, but can get quite busy.
Parys Mountain isn’t really a mountain at all. But on a pretty flat island any area of high ground can offer some impressive views and this location does just that. But its main attraction to landscape photographers, of course, is its industrial heritage as having been the largest copper mine in Europe during the 18th century. And copper from here being used on Nelson’s fleet at Trafalgar! It is also one of the oldest copper mines, with some workings dating back to 4000BC.
Today it is an other-worldly landscape of outrageously bright colours and textures. The toxic groundworks prevent most vegetation growth, thus preserving the landscape in a counter-intuitive way to most post-industrial locations which are long since overgrown and lost.
It is recommended to visit for photography in bright sunlight as this enhances the drama of the landscape. Flat grey light leaves it looking muddy and uninspiring. This requirement for strong light makes it good location on a bright sunny mid-summer day, because the vibrant colours and harsh texture shadows bring out the drama at its best! The only downside to a visit at this time of year is that you’ll need to be patient and / or creative if you want shots without people in them. Of course, it’s no problem if you’re looking for references of scale.
Parking and access is very easy and free of charge. It’s a highly recommended location to visit; not only as a very unusual photographic opportunity, but also just to enjoy the rarity of the scenery, the elevated views across Anglesey and to Snowdonia on the mainland, but also the historical context.