We have listed just a few of the large number of Castles in Wales and it is almost impossible to see them all even if you have a few weeks of travel time. The best way and cheapest way to see and also visit a number of castles that are open is to get a 3 or 7 day Explorer Pass – see www.cadw.gov.wales and also join the National Trust – See www.nationaltrust.org.uk/visit/wales which also highlights some of their properties, just one of them being a Mansion House in Newport called Tredegar House.
In most times if you head to a Castle you will also find a village or town nearby too – so you end up seeing the Castle but also the village or town where it is located and the countryside around it. In Carmarthen, for example (68 miles -110km- west of Cardiff) there is Carmathen Castle but also the National Botanical Gardens – a magnificent garden with lakes, massive glasshouse, trees, flowers and much more. See www.gardenofwales.org.uk
THE WELSH COASTLINE - A great drive
Having a car or hiring one to drive along the Welsh coastline allows you to both see the countryside and coastline, stopping where and when you want to.
There are so many nice places to see that it is hard to choose, but to give you a feel for just some of the places, we are suggesting the following itinerary, based on travelling small distances each day and staying in the village or town to see more -
Llangollen is a really pretty town with about 3600 residents located on the River Dee. There are nice places here to eat and stay, with the riverside position being very attractive, with sheep properties in the countryside around here too. The Highlight of your time here could however be a trip along the Llangollen Canal, a 41 mile (66km) canal that runs into Shropshire to the Union Canal there. This canal runs through beautiful small villages like Chirk and Ellesmere, through the countryside, through tunnels and over high bridge aquaducts creating an amazing journey. There are a number of companies that have narrowboats to hire – and these are some of them – www.woolfallnarrowboats.com, www.chashardern.co.uk, www.cheshirecatnarrowboats.co.uk, www.norburywharfltd.co.uk, www.peagreenboats.co.uk, www.bettisfieldboats.co.uk , www.venetianhireboats.co.uk
Welshpool – is where the amazing Powis castle is located, managed by the National Trust. If you have every bought curry powder, you will know the name 'Clive of India' and in Powis Castle you will be able to see an amazing collection of Indian artefacts, textiles, furniture and decorative work. The Castle and its gardens are well worth seeing, and Welshpool itself a nice place to stay and get a feel for its atmosphere and lifestyle.
There are so many other places in Wales that we have not talked about, but hopefully what we have written here will entice you to visit Wales yourself and find new places that will inspire you.