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Location - Western Europe; Capital - Wales - Cardiff; Population - Wales - 3 million; Currency - Pound Sterling MORE UK - WALES

Time ran out on my 2016 South Wales trip so Breacon Beacons was bypassed. I fixed that the following year, bus-ing it from Swansea to Brecon via the impressive Dan-yr-Ogof Showcaves. I later added the 'wells' towns and a few more Beacons waterfalls - August 2017/March 2018.


uknote20 Pounds












wales2000The Dan-yr-Ogof Showcaves are a 1hr15min bus ride north of Swansea, just inside the Brecon Beacons National Park


wales2007The site is comprised of three caves - the Showcave, Cathedral Cave and Bone Cave - along with lots of model dinosaurs - Dan-yr-Ogof Showcaves



wales2003The Angel is one of several formations created by water minerals seeping through rock. But you can't see her face - mysterious! Dan-yr-Ogof Showcaves














wales2013Never heard of Deinosuchus before, a skull of which measured 1.5m. Pretty big! Dan-yr-Ogof Showcaves















wales2035A pterodactyl (I'm guessing) flies above a waterfall in the cave grounds - Dan-yr-Ogof Showcaves


wales2025The main draw in the Cathedral Cave is the pair of 20m waterfalls - Dan-yr-Ogof Showcaves




wales2029The illuminated exit of one of the waterfalls. The Showcave and Cathedral Cave are impressive and only 30mins from Brecon town, so make a trip - Dan-yr-Ogof Showcaves





















wales2031Take the steps up to Bone Cave for a view of Brecon Beacons National Park. Plus some dinosaurs of course - Dan-yr-Ogof Showcaves
















wales2032Love the smoke-billowing volcanoes! Dan-yr-Ogof Showcaves




wales2037Just a few km south of the caves is Henrhyd Falls

















wales2044It's accessible via a steep walk from a National Trust car park near Coelbren - Henrhyd Falls

















wales2046A big appeal is the chance to walk behind a waterfall. By the way there's several other waterfalls further east at Ystradfellte, in an area known as Waterfall Country - Henrhyd Falls


wales2048Standing behind Henrhyd Falls




wales2205Another set of Brecon Beacon waterfalls are the Mellte Falls, just south of Ystradfellte. This is Sgwd Clun-Gwyn, the least impressive of the four waterfalls
















wales2219The second is Sgwd y Pannwr, small in height but wide and voluminous - Mellte Falls
















wales2222Sitting alongside Sgwd y Pannwr, a good spot for a break and a picnic - Mellte Falls


wales2207A couple of hundred metres away is Sgwd Isaf Clun-Gwyn, accessible at close range only by getting yourself thoroughly wet - Mellte Falls




wales2211The four waterfalls are connected along a circular trail - muddy in parts - which takes up to 4hrs to negotiate - Mellte Falls
















wales2228The fourth waterfall and the biggest attraction, at the bottom of the circular trail, is Sgwd yr Eira - Mellte Falls

















wales2230Just like Henrhyd Falls, Sgwd yr Eira provides the great novelty of walking behind the waterfall - Mellte Falls


wales2232Getting very wet behind Sgwd yr Eira - Mellte Falls




wales2233A photo of Sgwd yr Eira from behind the waters - Mellte Falls
















wales2235In March there'd been a fair amount of rain and Sgwd yr Eira was pretty full - Mellte Falls

















wales2056St Mary's Church in the centre of Brecon


wales2058Brecon Cathedral is set on a hill on the northern edge of Brecon




wales2060As its name suggests, Brecon is a useful base to explore the greenery and waterfalls of Breacon Beacons National Park

















wales2239Snow covered hills rise into the cloud on the outskirts of Brecon

















wales2062The River Usk flows through Brecon


wales2064On the right, overlooking Honddu River, is the 11th century Brecon Castle, now a hotel - Brecon




wales2071Take a canal cruise at the start of the Monmouthshire and Brecon Canal - Brecon
















wales2086In season Dragonfly Cruises operate 2.5hr trips, taking in a canal lock and an aqueduct over the River Usk - Brecon

















wales2083Passing hay fields on the canal cruise - Brecon




wales2243Head about 30km north of Brecon to one of the four wells (spa) towns in Wales, Builth Wells
















wales2241There's not much to see in Builth Wells, save for the attractive setting of the Wye River


















wales2252Just over the main bridge is a big mural of Llywelyn ap Gruffydd, the last native prince of Wales back in the 13th century


wales2246The grounds of this church were crammed with garden-based junk and bric-a-brac - Builth Wells




wales2262The best view of the perfectly sited Carreg Cennan Castle is from a couple of kms away, leading to the entrance

















wales2275Most of the 13th century castle is in ruins, but this vaulted passage leading to a cave has been reconstructed - Carreg Cennan Castle

















wales2270Take in the great 360° scenery from the castle - Carreg Cennan Castle


wales2272The nearest train stations are Llandeilo and Ffairfach, followed by a taxi ride - Carreg Cennan Castle




wales2276Llanwrtyd Wells is another of the former spa towns of Wales. It claims to be the smallest town in Britain, with a population of just 850















wales2283..But it's far better known for its weird & wacky events - Llanwrtyd Wells

















wales2284Many of these have died a death but it gives a flavour. Those that have thrived are Man versus Horse, Real Ale Wobble, Mountain Bike Chariot Race. Brilliant! The idea was to put the town on the tourist map, and it sure has worked - Llanwrtyd Wells


wales2285And this is the one it's (almost) world famous for. Well OK, nothing's happening here, but this is the site of the annual World Bog Snorkelling Championships - Llanwrtyd Wells




wales2287The centrally located Neuadd Arms lists past winners. And I'd hazard a guess thatdrunken nights here have led to some crazy ideas! Llanwrtyd Wells
















wales2296The third of four wells towns in mid-Wales is Llandrindod Wells


wales2292And at last I see evidence of the spring waters that lends these places their 'wells' name. Spa towns are resorts built around mineral-rich waters said to bring health benefits. They were all the rage in Wales in the 19th century but once the fad waned the towns also faded - Llandrindod Wells


wales2301Llandrindod Wells Lake is a peaceful area popular with dog walkers and visitors to the lakeside cafe - Llandrindod Wells




wales2087The Town Hall and high street at Abergavenny

















wales2089 A Gorsedd stone circle synonymous with the Eisteddfod, a Welsh cultural festival - Abergavenny
















wales2091Another St Mary's Church, this one with Tithe Barn to the right, which serves as the town's Tourist Information Centre - Abergavenny


wales2097On the left are the ruins of the 11th century castle, with what I think is the peak called Blorenge - Abergavenny




wales2098And I reckon the hill on the left is known as Sugar Loaf - Abergavenny
















wales2200ln my March visit a food festival was in full swing with live music and lots of beer - Abergavenny
















wales2116A short drive east of Abergavenny is the 15th century Raglan Castle - Raglan


wales2105Climb the Great Tower for sweeping views of the countryside - Raglan




wales2107The village of Raglan nestles amongrolling hills. Centre-left is the Church of St Cadoc - Raglan
















wales2119A dragon stands outside The Beaufort Hotel - Raglan






















wales2120The bus from Raglan to Newport passes through the main square at Usk



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LINKS - Wales tourist board - guide to north Wales - - guide to mid Wales - another site focused on mid Wales - guide to south Wales - Britain's official tourism website - train information across Britain - Wales public transport journey planner - National Express coaches cover Britain


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