We are just back from a lovely trip to Wales where we stayed in the village of Cwmdu in some holiday cottages run by the National Trust. The income from the cottages pays for the village's shop/post office and pub. You can find out more about the village here http://cwmdu.com/
The village is in the middle of nowhere and quiet and lovely with no light pollution. We loved the huge comfy bed and the cosy living room in our cottage. Unfortunately we didn't get to go in the pub or the shop as we timed our other outings badly. On the saturday there was a charity bike show with music late into the evening, which we drowned out with the telly. But other than that, perfect! It's clearly a thriving little community.
On the Friday, we went to the National Wool Museum http://www.museumwales.ac.uk/en/wool/ and learnt about the Welsh woollen industry which I loved, and tried to find a railway for Tom to visit. The first one we found closed for the season, so on the Saturday we went to the Gwili Valley railway,http://www.gwili-railway.co.uk/ . I love volunteer run railways for their curious amateur kitch vibe, and although we had to go on a DMU as no steam was running, I certainly enjoyed it, and I think Tom did too. I especially liked the Mobile Sorting Office Carriage that the Post Office used until 2003.
On the Saturday afternoon, the sun came out and we went for a paddle at Pembrey Country Park. http://www.sirgaerfyrddin.gov.uk/english/leisure/countryside/countryparks/pages/pembreycountrypark.aspx This was amazing. The sun was so bright, and the water clear and fairly warm. I wish we could have camped there but the on site camping is for groups like scouts/schools only. I'll have to find a campsite nearby. There were all kinds of activities like golf and riding on site besides the beach and the lovely parkland.
Our next stop on Sunday was Dinefwr Park, the local National Trust place http://beta.nationaltrust.org.uk/dinefwr This had a mansion house and gardens, which were especially interesting as there was no set route round the house and you were encouraged to handle objects and sit around. Upstairs were exhibitions about the history. Once we'd exhausted these, we walked up to the CADW owned castle ruins and admired the amazing views of the surrounding countrysides.
In the evenings, we spent our time mainly reading and vegging out in front of the telly, and it was so nice to have peace and quiet away from the busy - ness of home. I read 3 books in 5 days and very nearly finished knitting my cardigan. Tom made lots of delicous food too.
I got in lots of driving practice on my favourite kinds of country roads which was good, though I baulked at driving home. On the way back we went to Brecon Cathedral, and saw Dr. Who and Amy's signatures in the visitors book as they filmed an episode there. We went home over the old Severn bridge, and stopped at the services so Tom could look at it from the view point.
All in all, a lovely time .