What’s On Summer 2019
The summer holidays are upon us so we thought this would be the perfect time to share our favourite family-friendly activities, events, and places to visit in the local area, for the coming weeks.
Whether it’s nature, history, arts and crafts, artisan foods, or music you’re interested in, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. Ideal for creating those cherished holiday memories!
Welsh Wildlife Centre & Teifi Marsh
Enjoy getting up close to our local flora and fauna at the wildlife centre. With nature trails to explore, bird watching hides, the adventure playground, the willow maze and giant willow badger, as well as the resident water buffalo there’s lots to see and do. Also, there are regular events planned over the summer, which are ideal for children, including arts and crafts sessions, shelter building, pond dipping, and bugs and insects mini-beast hunts. (See their website here for more details)
The Iron Age Village at Castell Henllys is another firm favourite with our guests for a family outing.
There’s a selection of family-friendly activities and events being held daily over the summer holidays, including Experience the Iron Age, Fighting and Feasting, Roman Day, Discovery Day, and more. Enjoy crafts, activities, demonstrations and costumed guided tours, to learn more about life in the Iron Age, and experience what it would have been like to live at that time. The expertly recreated roundhouses and granary, on the original site of the Iron Age foundations, are set within 30 acres of beautiful woodland and river meadows in the heart of the National Park – with sculpture trails depicting myths and legends – all available for you to explore and enjoy.
They have also recently introduced a Quiet Hour between 10 a.m and 11 a.m on Sundays for members of the public with autism. During this time all electrical sounds will be turned down in the visitor centre, there will be no noisy activities up in the hillfort, and there will be a member of staff available to answer any questions and to do gentle activities.
The recently renovated Cardigan Castle sits at the heart of Cardigan overlooking the River Teifi and offers a glimpse into Cardigan’s past. There are several different exhibitions to enjoy – the Cardigan Castle Story, The Eisteddfod Exhibition (celebrating Cardigan as the birthplace of Wales’s biggest cultural festival), The Barbara Wood Exhibition (the remarkable story of the last private owner of Cardigan Castle), as well as the Story of Cardigan and its colourful past.
Outside you can stroll through the two-acre Grade II listed Regency style gardens and see the beautifully carved wooden Eisteddfod Chair.
‘Summer in the Castle’ is a programme of music and outdoor theatre events, being run in conjunction with Theatr Mwldan. For more details visit their website here.
Llanerchaeron National Trust Estate
There’s something for all the family on a day out to the Llanerchaeron National Trust Estate, set a little way up the coast from us, in the heart of the Aeron Valley. The elegant Georgian Villa has remained remarkably unaltered for over 200 years, and there is also a farm, walled garden, lake, and service courtyard, including dairy, cheese press room, bake-house, smoke-house and laundry room to explore, for a taste of the ‘upstairs-downstairs’ experience.
Their summer events include Meg’s Mondays – a different activity every Monday led by Llanerchaeron’s gardener Meg. 50 Things Fridays – climb a tree, build a den, hunt for bugs, cook on a campfire, roll down a big hill – this is all part of The National Trust’s ‘50 things to do before you’re eleven and three-quarters’ initiative.
Located not far from us at Croft Farm, Cilgerran Castle is a striking 13th Century fortress which perches high above the spectacular Teifi River Gorge.
There are a number of family-friendly events being held at the castle over the summer to give you a flavour of its 800 year history, including a ‘Famous Five’ clue trail to follow, bow and arrow making, birds of prey flying displays and handling, a dragon-themed fun day, history walks and talks, and a medieval medicine chest event. Click here for more details.
Fishguard International Music Festival
For the musically-minded, the annual Fishguard International Music Festival runs from 20th July to 2nd August with a programme of predominantly classical music events staged at a variety of venues in and around Fishguard and other towns and villages across North Pembrokeshire. Full details are on their website.
Cardigan River and Food Festival
Taking place on Saturday 17th August, the Cardigan River and Food Festival is a celebration of the quality and diversity of the local independent food producers here in West Wales. Make the most of our growing reputation as a foodie destination and enjoy an array of food, drink, and award-winning produce to eat and buy.
This year’s Festival Kitchen is inspired by the Slow Food movement, celebrating the pleasures that food can bring, as well as its relationship to the community and environment. There will be plenty of space to relax and eat while enjoying our special Teifi riverside setting.
The Teifi River – an integral part of Cardigan’s coastal heritage, will play host to a diverse range of activities including kayak and canoe tasters, boat races, coracle demos, stand up paddle board demos and tasters, and displays by the RNLI.
New this year is a collaboration with Cardigan Castle, where there will be a family-dedicated fun area ‘Parti da Barti’ with crafts, displays, and workshops. There will also be an Entertainments Area with singers, dancers, and performers throughout the day.
Local Food Markets
Part of a great holiday is enjoying great food, and we have plenty of choices locally to explore. Three of our favourites are the local Producers’ Markets, offering local meats, fish, cakes and breads, cheeses, preserves, eggs, vegetables, honey and more!
The award-winning St Dogmaels Local Producers Market (the closest market to us) takes place every Tuesday morning between 9 am and 1 pm, and is located at the Coach House Visitor Centre – which also has a small museum, gallery, and shop – between the gorgeous Medieval Abbey Ruins and the working Watermill.
Newport Street Market takes place on Mondays between 9 am and 1 pm – perfect to pop along for provisions before heading to Newport beach.
Cardigan Guildhall Market is a permanent market with over 50 stalls over two floors of the Grade II listed Guildhall building. The array of different stalls include foods, crafts, clothes, antiques and collectables, crafts, and more.
Local Agricultural Shows
Part of our rural heritage here in West Wales includes a long tradition of the ‘annual show,’ and we are fortunate to have three great shows near us during the summer months, all with a slightly different character.
They all celebrate our longstanding agricultural culture with an array of different events and displays. This includes farm livestock judging, show jumping and in-hand horse showing, the local hunt, sheep shearing, gun dog displays, sheepdog challenges, dog shows, birds of prey displays, vintage tractors, cookery and country crafts, flowers and horticulture, live dance performances, Food Halls, fairground rides, shopping opportunities….and much more!
Cardigan County Show takes place on 3rd August http://cardigancountyshow.org.uk/
Nevern Show (small but perfectly formed) is on the 7th of August http://www.nevernshow.org.uk/
Pembrokeshire County Show prides itself on being the largest 3-day Agricultural County Show in Wales and takes place on the 13th – 15th August. http://www.pembsshow.org/
Shakespeare In The Abbey
Soak up some of the great bard’s wit in the unique setting of the ruins of St Dogmael’s Abbey as dusk falls and the stars come out. The Abbey Shakespeare Players will be performing The Merry Wives of Windsor this year, as they return to the Abbey for their 32nd annual outdoor production. Performances are taking place on 7th – 10th August, and you can get more details on their website.
As you can see, we have a vibrant community and a huge array of activities, events, and places to visit here in West Wales. Something to suit every age and taste, so it truly is family-friendly!
These are just some of the highlights that we’ve picked out for you. In addition to all this there are MANY more places to visit, and things to do, including Folly Farm Adventure Park & Zoo, Heatherton World of Activities, boat trips to Skomer Island, dolphin and sea-life spotting boat trips, coasteering, kayaking, horse riding…plus lots more.
And that’s in addition to enjoying all the facilities and activities onsite here at Croft Farm & Celtic Cottages too, including the daily farm animal feeding and egg collecting, the Big Play Barn with Pets’ Corner, adventure playground, soft-play area, heated indoor swimming pool, sauna, and gym!
Here’s to a fun-filled summer. We hope you make some wonderful happy memories and enjoy your time here.