Group Travel Guide
nt u Gwe Blaena von Blaena nd Bridge hilly Caerp f Cardif fil yr Tyd h t r e M ire outhsh Monm ort Newp
Taf ynon C a d d Rhon rgan Glamo f o le Va
Contents 04 Regional Overview
13 Explore Caerphilly
16 Coach Parking
06 12 Refreshment Stops
15 Event Highlights
17 Tour Guides
18 Maps & Travel Information 3
….. r u jo on B . … e a m w h S o… ll e H it u d ia D o… ll a H . … g a T Guten Welcome (or Croeso as we prefer to say) to Southern Wales You may already have an idea what to expect from a trip to Southern Wales. We are split into ten distinctive areas, each with their own character and charm. The areas of Blaenau Gwent, Blaenavon, Caerphilly, Merthyr and Rhondda Cynon Taf are well known for their history and heritage, whilst nearby Monmouthshire is more rural and famed for its fabulous food and drink. Newport and Cardiff are thriving cities with some world class attractions whilst along Bridgend and the Vale of Glamorgan is a mix of coastal resorts, market towns and fabulous countryside. We have plenty of castles and museums but we also have a National Park, the start of the Wales Coast Path and an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. We also have some things you may not associate with us. There are the remains of a Roman amphitheatre and barracks, vineyards producing award winning wine and a great big sculpture, soaring 20 metres into the sky and standing guard over the Valleys below.
Discover Caerphilly With a history dating back to Roman times, Caerphilly is always a popular stop on any tour of Southern Wales.
or contact the Events & Marketing team: tel - +44 (0)1443 866394 email - firstname.lastname@example.org To order group travel brochures for other areas of Southern Wales please contact +44 (0)845 6002639 or e-mail email@example.com
nty Bridgend Cou
von Blaena vel Guide
nt Gwe nau Blae avel Guide
Group Travel Guide
dfil yr Ty Merth avel Guide
thshire Monmou Guide
enau Bla n avon orga Blaen Glam
fil Tyd rthyr Me hire ouths nm Mo ort n Taf Newp Cyno dda n Rhon rga mo of Gla le Va
ent u Gw Blaena von Blaena
fil r Tyd Merthy ire outhsh Monm port New on Taf a Cyn ndd Rho n morga of Gla Vale
d gen Brid
nt Gwe Blaenau on Blaenav d Bridgen
e4438 Cardiff Council
y Caerphill thshire Monmou Newport Rhondda
Tydfil Merthyr ire Monmouthsh Gwent Blaenau Blaenavon
www.visitsouthernwales.org www.visit of hernwales.org southernwales.orgBridgend end rg lly Vale Bridg s.o rphilly www.visitsout Caerphi Cae rnwaleerphilly Caerphilly iff southe Ca Card Cardiff s.org w.visit fil ff Tydfil Cardiff wale ww yr Tyd Cardi Merthyr dfil Merth hern ire Tydfil yr Ty sout rth uthshire Merthyr outhsh Me hire visit Monmo Monm ouths hshire www. nm Monmout ort port Mo
ort f n Ta Newp Cyno dda n rga Rhon mo of Gla
Taf non a Cy ndd n Rho morga of Gla Vale
Vale of Glam
Group Travel Guideorgan Gwent Blaenau Blaenavon
l Tydfi hyr hire Mert uths mo Mon f ort wp n Ta no Ne a Cy
Another great historic attraction in the area is Llancaiach Fawr Manor. Step through the doors and back in time to the 17th century where Colonel Prichard and his household’s servants will greet you and tell you all about how they live and work. The manor is also reputed to be the most haunted house in Wales and has been the location of many unexplained happenings.
Group Travel Guide
Group Travel Guide
ent u Gw Blaena von Blaena gend Brid illy Caerph
end Bridg hilly Caerp
Group Travel Guide
Group Travel Guide
ent au Gw Blaen n avo Blaen
ent Gw enau Bla on enav Bla end Bridg hilly Caerp
Rhondda Cynon Taf
Each of our areas has its own guide. So have a flick through this one and then take a look at the companion brochures and before long you’ll be planning your trip to Southern Wales.
The centrepiece of the area of course is the huge 800 year old castle. It sits on a 30 acre site, which makes it the second largest castle in Britain. It also boasts a tower that leans at a greater angle than its more famous counterpart in Pisa. The castle has been seen on many TV programmes, including Doctor Who and Merlin.
For more information visit our website www.visitsouthernwales.org
artwork for SW Guide
Newport Cynon Taf Rhondda rgan 18/09/2015 17:04 Glamo
on Taf a Cyn Rhondd n orga of Glam Vale
Newport Taf Cynon Rhondda Glamorgan
Vale of Vale www.visitsouthernwales.org rg itsouthernwales.org www.visitsouth ernwales.owww.vis ernwales.org .org .visitsouth wales www uthern isitso www.v
Blaenau Gwent Blaenavon Bridgend Caerphilly Cardiff Merthyr Tydfil Monmouthshire Newport Rhondda Cynon
With so much history, the area’s museum is definitely worth a visit. The Winding House Museum sits on the site of an old colliery and brings together all the history of the county borough of Caerphilly in a permanent exhibition as well as a changing exhibition. The area is also home to a number of major events throughout the year. Caerphilly Castle provides the stunning backdrop for the flagship Big Cheese Festival every summer whilst spring’s Food Festival and the Christmas Fayre are also big draws.
an Vale of Glamorg
Attractions History abounds in Caerphilly with a castle, museum and haunted manor house. It also has some stunning countryside and one or two surprises. Caerphilly Castle
Cwmcarn Forest Visitor Centre and Lake
Iconic castle dating from the 13th Century and the second largest in Britain. With new interactive interpretation and access to spiral staircase towers; previously restricted from public viewing.
If you’re looking for the perfect picnic or BBQ spot, dappled woods to wander through or riverbanks to ramble down then look no further than Cwmcarn Forest. Raven’s Café situated inside the Visitor Centre offers refreshments and lunches for groups.
tel: +44 (0)2920 883143 email: firstname.lastname@example.org web: www.cadw.wales.gov.uk
tel: +44 (0)1495 272001 email: email@example.com web: www.cwmcarnforest.co.uk
Llancaiach Fawr Manor
Historic manor house where costumed characters from the 17th century guide you around. The house is also reported to be the most haunted in Wales. Group rates and tours available.
Enjoy the ‘Heritage Experience’ - an immersive journey through time, telling the story of the creation, demise and final restoration of one of Wales’ most iconic buildings, the Grade II* listed Newbridge Memorial Hall.
tel: +44 (0)1443 412248 email: firstname.lastname@example.org web: www.llancaiachfawr.co.uk
tel: +44 (0)1495 243 252 email: email@example.com web: www.newbridgememo.co.uk
Senghenydd Memorial Garden
Winding House Museum
Located in Senghenydd the Memorial Garden commemorates all those in Wales who lost their lives as a result of the coal industry. Every colliery disaster is remembered on a series of ceramic paviers as part of a ‘Pathway of Memory’ around the garden.
A range of exhibits and a series of exhibitions bring history alive. The impressive Victorian Winding Engine comes to life on certain days throughout the year and can be pre-booked for groups.
tel: +44 (0)2920 830445 email: firstname.lastname@example.org web: www.visitcaerphilly.com
tel: +44 (0)1443 822666 email: email@example.com web: www.windinghouse.co.uk
A unique, luxurious 4* golf & spa resort Set in over 100 acres of meadowland & hidden amongst the breath-taking valleys of South East Wales 42 Bedroom Hotel
Winners Sports Bar & Golf Facilities
30 minutes from Cardiff City Centre Easily located for the M4 Motorway Complimentary WI-FI Air conditioning and climate control Internet access point LCD TV Tea & coffee making facilities Direct dial telephone Reading lights Iron & ironing board on request Power shower Hairdryer In room safe Complimentary toiletries
Dining & Events Blas Restaurant & Winners Bar 5 function rooms up to 350 people Entertainment events throughout the year Christmas cabaret lunches & twixmas breaks
6021 yard par 71 championship course 9 hole beginners / improvers course Indoor putting studio Golf Simulator Pro shop Winners Bar with 6 TV screens including 50” Hi-Def plasma showing South facing sun deck overlooking the 10th & 11th fairways & fountain Pool table, darts and amusements Snack menu
Fusion Spa & Wellness Leisure Club 18 metre swimming pool Sauna, steam room & aromatherapy suite Jacuzzi & hydrospa State of the art gym 4 treatment rooms Rasul mud room ceremony Relaxation room
From £55 per person for dinner, bed & breakfast From £40 per person for bed & breakfast
Driver stays for free Tour guide stays for free T&Cs apply*
01495 225 590
Activities Dust off the cobwebs and get out into the countryside to enjoy one of these fantastic activities. Escape Blackwood
Mountain Biking at Cwmcarn Forest
The home of many thrilling escape rooms designed to get your brain working and your blood pumping. Enjoy a fun afternoon with your friends or family at Escape Blackwood, the perfect activity for that ultimate memorable experience.
The trails have it all - testing climbs, swooping descents and demanding technical sections. Ride 15.5km of almost pure single track through a landscape once scarred by coal mining but now considered one of Wales’ hidden gems.
tel: +44(0) 7568 446 442 email: firstname.lastname@example.org web: www.escapeblackwood.co.uk
tel: +44 (0)1495 272001 email: email@example.com web: www.cwmcarnforest.co.uk
Rockwood Riding Centre
Rock UK Summit Centre
Situated on Caerphilly Mountain in 250 acres of private land. Individual and group lessons available. ABRS approved. Indoor arena with viewing area.
The centre has a world class, man-made caving system complete with waterfall and some of the highest indoor climbing walls in South Wales! With over 120 routes as well as an auto belay, bouldering area and traverse wall.
tel: +44 (0)2920 866281 email: firstname.lastname@example.org web: www.visitcaerphilly.com
tel: +44 (0)1443 710090 email: email@example.com web: www.rockuk.org
LLECHWEN HALL H OT E L & R E STA U R A N T
FINE DINING LUNCH | £5.95 *
HIGH TEA | £9.95 *
G R O U P D I S C O U N TS AVA I L A B L E
Taff Valley Quad Bikes & Activity Centre A family run activity centre, specialising in Quad Bike treks through the countryside on a 360 acre working hill farm. Also taster sessions in archery and Clay Pigeon Shooting available.
M W Y NH E WC H E I C H BW Y D tel: +44 (0)2920 831658 email: firstname.lastname@example.org web: www.adventurewales.co.uk
WWW.LLECHWENHALL.CO.UK *Te r ms & co n d itio n s a p p ly.
Accommodation With a choice of a four star resort, rural hotel, village hotel and well known Premier Inns, groups are welcome and catered for in the county borough of Caerphilly. Bryn Meadows Golf, Hotel & Spa
Llechwen Hall Hotel
Bryn Meadows is a four star boutique golf, hotel and spa resort. The lavishly equipped bedroom suites, with panoramic views over the surrounding countryside, will enable you to completely relax.
Llechwen Hall Hotel is a privately owned historic country house hotel with magnificent views, exceptional food and stylish surroundings. With funding announced to add a luxurious spa & leisure facility and expand bedroom capacity by mid summer 2019.
tel: +44 (0)1495 225590 email: email@example.com web: www.brynmeadows.co.uk
tel: +44 (0)1443 742050 email: firstname.lastname@example.org web: www.llechwen.co.uk
Y lle perffaith ar gyfer...
Caerphilly Crossways Crossways Business Park Caerphilly
Caerphilly Corbetts Lane Caerphilly
tel: +44 (0)871 527 8184 web: www.premierinn.com
tel: +44 (0)871 527 8182 web: www.premierinn.com
• • • •
Hanes yn dod yn fyw Teithiau Ysbryd Cinio a Swper Te Hufen
The perfect place for... • • • •
History brought vividly to life Ghost tours Lunches & Dinners Cream Teas
01443 412248 • Gelligaer Road, Nelson, CF46 6ER 10
Take time out from your tour to enjoy a spot of lunch or a refreshing tea or coffee at one of the many cafes, pubs or restaurants throughout the region.
1 Day Itinerary
Blas Restaurant at Bryn Meadows Hotel, Golf & Spa
Casa Restaurant Bella Mia Capri Italian Restaurant and Cocktail Bar
Llechwen Hall Hotel
Take a tour around Caerphilly. A massive castle, a haunted house and a poiginet memorial. Finish off the day with a delicious local ice cream surrounded by beautiful countryside.
Stop 1 – Caerphilly Castle Blas at Bryn Meadows use the best ingredients from local suppliers, to create modern dishes with a Welsh theme.
A family run Mediterranean restaurant and cocktail bar with a view! Enjoy a wide range of tastes from Tapas to pasta and pizza, steaks and grills.
Gourmet cuisine and excellent wines are served in the charming AA rosette 17th Century beamed long house. Excellent service and group menus available.
Caerphilly, CF83 1JL www.casamiacaerphilly.co.uk
Nelson, CF37 4HP www.llechwen.co.uk
The Malcolm Uphill
The Rock Inn
This 400 year old former Farmhouse has a delicious seasonal menu in a cosy atmosphere with open fireplaces and traditional beams.
The Malcolm Uphill is a popular Wetherspoon’s pub in the centre of Caerphilly with a large selection of food and drink available daily.
Excellent lunch and evening menu in a charming atmosphere. High quality furnishings and quirky memorabilia adorn the walls. Prebooked groups catered for.
Blackwood, NP12 2RB www.brynmeadows.co.uk/dining
Iconic castle dating from the 13th Century and the second largest in Britain. Highlights include a tower that leans at a greater angle than the one in Pisa and the impressive great hall, scene of many formal occasions throughout the centuries. www.cadw.wales.gov.uk Stop 2 – Senghenydd Memorial Garden Located in Senghenydd the Memorial Garden commemorates all those in Wales who lost their lives as a result of the coal industry. Every Colliery disaster is remembered on a series of ceramic paviers as part of a ‘Pathway of Memory’ around the garden. www.visitcaerphilly.com Stop 3 – Llancaiach Fawr Manor
Rudry, CF83 3EB www.chefandbrewer.com The Visitor Centre – Centre Visit Caerphilly Caerphilly
Purchase a truckle of Caerphilly Cheese and stop for coffee or cake in the delightful coffee shop whilst enjoying impressive views of Caerphilly Castle. Caerphilly, CF83 1JL www.visitcaerphilly.com
Caerphilly, CF83 1FQ www.jdwetherspoon.co.uk/ home/pubs/the-malcolm-uphill
Blackwood, NP12 1DD www.therockblackwood.co.uk
Volare Italian Dining & Bistro
Country pub perfectly located for group meal stop between Caerphilly and Cardiff. Seasonal food and carefully nurtured ales on offer.
Born from the passion of food by two Calabresian’s, the restaurant brings a slice of their hometown, along with the traditions and cuisine to Wales.
Thornhill, CF83 1LY www.vintageinn.co.uk/ thetravellersrestcaerphilly
Historic manor house where costumed characters from the 17th century guide you around. Find out what life was like for them during the civil war. The house is also reported to be the most haunted in Wales. www.llancaiachfawr.co.uk Stop 4 – Winding House Museum Museum chronicling the history of Caerphilly and surrounding area. A range of exhibits and a rotating series of exhibitions brings history alive. Look out too for the massive Victorian winding engine which comes to life on certain days throughout the year. www.windinghouse.co.uk
Caerphilly, CF83 1FQ www.volare.co.uk
Explore the Region - 2 Day Itinerary
Day 2 (Continued)
With so much to do it can be challenging to know where to start. We’ve put together a sample two day itinerary for you, giving you the opportunity to visit some of the very best attractions in the region.
Stop 3 – Dyffryn Gardens, The Vale of Glamorgan Covering more than 55 acres, Dyffryn Gardens feature a stunning collection of intimate garden rooms including a rose garden, Pompeian garden and an extensive Arboretum featuring trees from all over the world. www.nationaltrust.org.uk/dyffryn-gardens Stop 4 – McArthurGlen Designer Outlet, Bridgend Situated right on junction 36 of the M4 Motorway, the undercover mall has over 90 shops selling high street and designer brand names at discounted prices. www.bridgenddesigneroutlet.com
Day 1 Stop 1 – Llancaiach Fawr Manor, Caerphilly Llancaiach Fawr Manor near Caerphilly is a 17th century manor house. Take a tour of the house and meet the servants who will tell you tales of what life was like for them back in 1645. www.llancaiachfawr.co.uk
Stop 5 - The Royal Mint Visitor Experience, Rhondda Cynon Taf Take a look behind the scenes at Britain’s oldest manufacturing organisation. See for yourself the people and processes that put the pounds and pennies in your pockets. www.royalmint.com/en/the-royal-mint-experience
Stop 2 – Cyfarthfa Park & Museum, Merthyr Imposing 1824 castle housing a museum with a collection of fine art and social history items. www.visitmerthyr.co.uk/attractions/cyfarthfa-park-museum.aspx Stop 3 – Guardian Mining Memorial, Six Bells Towering above the village of Six Bells is the Guardian Mining Memorial. Commemorating the 1960 Six Bells mining disaster, the monument was unveiled in 2010. www.guardianwales.info Stop 4 – Blaenavon World Heritage Centre, Blaenavon The Centre features an interactive Victorian school room, film and multi-media displays which not only provide visitors with a unique insight into the significance of Blaenavon’s Industrial Landscape, but also introduces them to the area’s many attractions. www.visitblaenavon.co.uk
What’s on in Southern Wales Time your visit right and not only will you stay in some great accommodation, get to sample some great food and visit some top attractions, you’ll also get to enjoy some fabulous events. We’ve highlighted some of the most popular ones here, but there are hundreds more going on throughout the year. For a full list of events in the region, please visit www.visitsouthernwales.org
Stop 5 - Shire Hall, Monmouthshire Built in 1724, the elegant building has a remarkable past. Once a centre of commerce and governance for the town, it also served as a courthouse. www.shirehallmonmouth.org.uk
Steelhouse Festival, Blaenau Gwent
Nos Galan Road Races, Mountain Ash
Isle of Fire, Vale of Glamorgan
Abergavenny Food Festival
The Big Splash, Newport
Day 2 Stop 1 – Tredegar House, Newport Set in 90 acres of beautiful parkland on the outskirts of Newport is this 17th century house. Now in the care of the National Trust, visitors can hear about the house’s history and it’s eccentric former owners and view the art collection. www.nationaltrust.org.uk/tredegar-house
RHS Flower Show Cardiff
Stop 2 – Wales Millennium Centre, Cardiff As part of a visit to the Centre, behind the scenes tours are offered where you can discover the secrets of the landmark building and find out what lies beneath the inscription. Special deals are available for groups and there is ample coach parking nearby. www.wmc.org Merthyr Rising
The Big Cheese, Caerphilly
Porthcawl Elvis Festival
Blaenavon World Heritage Day, Blaenavon
Find out where to drop off your passengers or park your coach in some of our main towns and attractions.
Make sure you get the most out of your visit to the region by hiring the services of a tour guide. Members of The Wales Official Tour Guide Association are the only guides officially recognised to be able to guide in Wales. They can provide highly trained, professional and experienced Blue Badge Guides, who will help bring your journey to life.
Caerphilly Caerphilly’s coach parking facilities are ideally placed for making the most of a visit to the town, whether visiting the castle or browsing the shops. Coach Drop Off Castle Court Shopping Centre, CF83 1NU (opposite castle)
Coach Park Crescent Road, CF83 1XY
There are dozens of guides, each with their own specialisms, interests and language skills. Blue Badge Guides can take you all over the region, whilst Green Badge Guides offer a more specialist and localised expertise.
Coach Driver Incentives A free cup of tea/coffee and cake for coach drivers at The Visit Caerphilly Centre www.visitcaerphilly.com Contact the Destination & Events Team: +44 (0)1443 866394 or email email@example.com
There’s so much to do in Southern Wales that we couldn’t fit it all into one brochure. Take a look at our website for more ideas for your group visit. www.visitsouthernwales.org
To find a guide to suit your needs please visit www.walesbestguides.com
Maps and Travel Information Easy to get to We’re a different country with our own language and culture, yet we’re surprisingly easy to get to. We’re only around two hours down the M4 from London whilst Birmingham and the West Midlands are only an hour or so from our borders.
So in next to no time you could be here, immersing yourself in our culture and traditions and who knows maybe even trying to get your tongue around our language. Croeso - or welcome in English. We’re not very big, but we certainly fit a lot in – and getting around the region couldn’t be easier. A comprehensive road system links all the major towns, while many towns and villages are well served by the local train network which connects with the mainline stations.
Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, Southern Wales Tourism cannot accept responsibility for any errors, inaccuracies or omissions, or for any matter in any way connected with or arising out of the publication of the information contained within this brochure. The brochure may not be reproduced in part or in whole without the prior consent of the publisher. This publication is available in Welsh.
www.visitcaerphilly.com @Visitcaerphilly Visit Caerphilly @Visitcaerphilly
Published by: Southern Wales Tourism Photographs: Southern Wales Tourism would like to thank Mike Chapman, Caerphilly County Borough Council and Visit Britain © Crown Copyright Visit Wales for the use of their images in the publication. Map © Collins Bartholomew Ltd Design: Mediadesign
The county borough of Caerphilly has an annual events programme with some fantastic festivals taking place in various towns. The highlight of the events programme is The Big Cheese which attracts over 70,000 visitors each year, offering a huge food & drink market, craft stalls, entertainment, funfair and medieval re-enactment village in the grounds of Caerphilly Castle. JULY
Last Weekend in July
Caerphilly Christmas Market has been growing over the past ten years and now attracts over 90 stalls. The fayre celebrates Christmas through the town and inside Caerphilly Castle.
Second weekend in December
Caerphilly Food Festival in May has become a firm favourite, with a variety of food & drink suppliers, many local, along with cookery demonstrations.
Email us for a group/coach booking form for any of our events, you will be allocated free parking for the event period along with a lunch pass and goodie bag for the coach driver. firstname.lastname@example.org For a full list of events visit our website visitcaerphilly.com