Blaenfforest is centrally placed in the old county of Dyfed which was made up of the three counties of Carmarthenshire, Pembrokeshire and Ceredigion with their rich cultural heritage.
This makes it an ideal base to explore the diversity of the countryside, spectacular coastline and host of attractions and things to do, suiting people of all ages and interests.
If you enjoy planning activities for your holiday in advance, or arranging your visit to coincided with an exhibition, special event or one of the yummy food festivals, here are some links you might find useful:
Discover Carmarthenshire to discover what Carmarthenshire has to offer, as it is such a diverse county there is a huge range of things to see and do.
If you like to walk, there is a new, free app which is available to download: Wales Coast Path
We’ve found this new and developing site of what’s on in Pembrokeshire which we think is really interesting and you might like to check it out: Pembrokeshire Online
No visit to Blaenfforest would be complete without exploring at least a little of Cardigan Bay. Follow this link to all the attractions and activities: Cardiganshire Coast & Country. You’ll find Blaenfforest if you have a look at the Gardens of West Wales page and follow the www.ngs.org.uk link.
For a peaceful and relaxing break, away from it all, yet still with plenty to do and see, come to Blaenfforest - we look forward to welcoming you.
Local Amenities and Attractions
Newcastle Emlyn (2 miles) is our nearest small market town with its ruined castle, riverside walks and a good selection of pubs, cafés and shops. There are also banks, ATM's, launderette and leisure centre with swimming pool.
You can visit flour and woollen mills, cheese makers, honey farms and vineyards and enjoy Welsh lamb and freshly caught fish. Forty mills once clustered around nearby Dre-fach Felindre, 'the Huddersfield of Wales'. The Museum there tells the story of this community, dependent for its livelihood on spinning and weaving.
The craft centres in the attractive Georgian town of Aberaeron and at Cardigan are well worth a visit and you will find many local artisans offering a wide range of goods to tempt you, including paintings, pottery, glassware, jewellery, furniture and hand woven fabrics and clothing.
Cilgerran Castle and St. Dogmaels Abbey are the venues for live Shakespeare performances in August each year.
Visit Fatbirder for information about birding in the area. The Wildlife Centre, the Museum of the Welsh Woollen Industry, the Teifi Valley Steam Railway and the National Coracle Centre and Waterfalls at Cenarth are all close by. The Teifi is famous for sewin (sea trout) in season. A few hours spent by the river could be very rewarding. Visit Fatfisherman for information about fishing in the area.
The home of the Welsh pony, there are many events which celebrate these animals and Barley Saturday in Cardigan in April is a traditional fair which still involves the high street being closed to traffic while the horses and ponies are paraded through.
The Theatr Mwldan in Cardigan hosts a wide variety of live performances and exhibitions and also has two cinema screens.
Coarse, trout and salmon fishing is available locally or for the more energetic, dry slope skiing, horse riding, pony trekking, quad biking, surfing, or cycling.
Why not try a half day or one day course at canoeing, climbing, or coasteering? Or perhaps you are into diving. Golf is also well catered for throughout the area. For the really hardy, the area also supports extreme dancing!
Try a gentle canoe paddle through the Cilgerran Gorge with its otters and kingfishers or a more invigorating white-water ride on the international course at Llandysul.
Cycle or ride on the Brechfa Forest trails. Aso in the Brecha Forest, you might watch the Motor Rally of Great Britain, held in October each year. For a touch of nostalgia take an authentic steam train ride on the Gwili Railway! Oakwood Leisure Park and Folly Farm provide an exciting day out for all the family.
Castles and Ruins
West Wales has had a turbulent history and the many ruined castles bear witness to this.
Visit the castles at Cilgerran, Cardigan, Aberystwyth, Carreg Cennen, Haverfordwest, Carew, Pembroke, Carmarthen, Kidwelly and Drwyslyn. Carew Castle and the tidal mill at Cresselly is a curiosity not to be missed.
The ruins of St. David’s cathedral, St. Dogmaels Abbey, St. Govan’s Chapel, Talley Abbey and Strata Florida are wonderfully peaceful places to explore.
For gardeners the National Botanic Garden of Wales is nearby. This £45 million Millennium showcase is set in 500 acres and centred on the Great Glass House, the largest single span oval glasshouse in the world, designed by Sir Norman Foster. This is the first major botanic garden in the UK for over 100 years.
For those who prefer their gardens smaller, Aberglasney Gardens is an oasis of peace and calm. Both are near Carmarthen. .An inspiration to poets since 1477.
Colby Woodland Garden (National Trust) near Amroth and Picton Castle garden in south Pembrokeshire are wonderfully informal gardens to visit.
Llanerchaeron near Aberaeron has two walled gardens and has remained in the same family for ten generations. It has recently been restored, and is virtually unchanged since it was built by Nash in the 18th century.
Blaenfforest Gardens and Grounds will be open for charity under the National Garden Scheme in June 2013. So if you’d like to do a spot of gardening while you’re here, please – you only have to ask!
Planning a trip? Check out the local weather.
Food and Drink
The whole of West Wales is renowned for its wholesome produce and there is ample opportunity to sample a range of excellent food and drink at the local hotels and inns as well as to buy at the local shops and markets. Try Cardigan Bay crab and lobster, and a range of seafood including cockles and sewin.
Lava bread (a type of seaweed) is a typically Welsh delicacy and can be found in the shops and some restaurants. Welsh lamb is always delicious and Welsh Black beef is extra special.
There are very many excellent local cheeses, with two cheese farms within five miles of Blaenfforest.
At Blaenfforest we produce our own eggs and honey and sometimes our own wine from the hedgerows, which you would be very welcome to try.
Local flour mills, vineyards and honey farms are a good source of gifts to take home to remind you of your visit to Wales.
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