Wales is one of those fabulous holiday destinations where you can explore medieval castles, hike scenic trails, or simply lie on award-winning beaches and relax. Located to the west of England, Wales has a lot to offer any traveller to the country. So, I’m thrilled that Jane is going to give us further insight into her idyllic homeland.
CT: Welcome, Jayne! Please, tell us about your hometown.
I’m from Cilfynydd which is down the road from Cardiff, and a popular tourist destination. The scenery is amazing there because it’s very green and up in the valley.
CT: If you were entertaining guests from another region, what three places would you take them to see?
- Cardiff, because it’s the capital and is located by the sea. This city is great for shopping and the nightlife.
- Llantwit Major – where I’m originally from – because it’s more historical and has lots of pubs. All the pubs line the square. Although we call it a square, it’s actually triangular shaped. During the summer, it’s a great place to sit outdoors. Besides, people there are super friendly.
- Taff Trail – which is a path that runs along the River Taff from Cardiff to Brecon. The scenery is amazing!
CT: Could you please tell us where we can find great local cuisine in your neighborhood?
For our local dish of fish and chips, Al’s Cafe in PontyPridd can’t be beat. People will buy their food at Al’s, then go by Ynysanghard Park to eat their meal. This is our largest park; it’s very beautiful because the River Taff runs through it.
CT: I’ve read that Wales has some great beaches. Which ones are popular with residents?
The great beaches are located on Barry Island, Porthcawl.
CT: Another wonderful thing about your homeland is the wide variety of lodging options. Where do you recommend that travelers stay?
There are some nice hotels just outside of Cardiff. A really posh one is Celtic Manor. It’s quite popular with golfers and celebs. Celebrity golf tournaments are also broadcasted there.
A mid-range hotel is the Vale Hotel and Spa. It’s a nice place to relax. Guests can enjoy a nice afternoon tea there.
The Travel Lodge on Cardiff Bay is a budget hotel. The rooms were recently refurbished and it’s quite cozy. It’s a short walk from Mermaid Quay. You’ll find lots or restaurants and bars in that area. You can also take a boat ride there and see some sites. Another great thing about this location is that it’s close to the Senedd – which is a government building with amazing architecture. It actually looks like an armadillo.
CT: What are some great Welsh-themed souvenirs to buy?
We have Wooden Love Spoons which are made from wood. They are usually given as wedding gifts and also for good luck.
A delicious food gift item is our Welsh cake. These small cakes are lush and made with currants, sultanas and mixed spices.
CT: Deciding on what to pack for a journey can at times be stressful. Please tell us a few toiletry and clothing essentials for a trip to Wales.
Since it rains a lot here, visitors must bring an umbrella and rain-proof jacket.
CT: In terms of customs and etiquette, what tips would you like to share with travelers?
The Welsh are extremely chatty and also passionate about rugby. Never walk into a pub and say that you’re English – especially during an England and Wales rugby match (LOL). If other countries are playing, then we’re cool.
We’re also very friendly and jolly people – especially in the valleys – and welcome everyone.
At night, if you are in Cardiff and see some drunken lads, don’t approach them.