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Explore Mid-Wales from River Cabin

Rivers, Mountains, Lakes, Waterfalls, Woodland, Culture & more...

Image by Ian Keefe

The River Wye & Upper Wye Valley

The River Wye is a special area of conservation renowned for its variety of wildlife, white water kayaking and Canadian canoeing. Most operators will collect you at your destination and bring you back to your starting point. In the winter, serious canoeists take to the Upper Wye for kayaking and white water rafting. Sailing dinghies and rowing boats can be hired on Llangorse Lake (the largest natural lake in Wales), and narrow boat trips are available on the Monmouthshire and Brecon Canals.

Image by Jonny Gios

The Brecon Beacons National Park

The Brecon Beacons National Park covers some 520 square miles including the majestic Brecon Beacons mountain range, the Black Mountains, secret waterfalls and Wales' largest natural lake, Llangorse Lake (pictured).

 

Image by Ed Robertson

Hay-on-Wye

Hay-on-Wye (Y-Gelli in Welsh), a small market town on the border between Wales and England, is world-famous as the "Town of Books". In 1961 Richard Booth opened his first 2nd-hand bookshop in Hay-on-Wye. There are now about 20 bookshops in the town and each year the Hay Festival brings over 100,000 people together to share stories and ideas. Don't miss market day, every Thursday, 9.00-14.30.​

Hiking

You can walk in the local Radnor Hills on the opposite side of the valley from River Cabin without meeting another soul. Behind the craggy outcrops of Aberedw Rocks, Prince Llewellyn (the last true prince of Wales) hid from Norman soldiers in a cave. To throw his pursuers off the scent, a local farrier shod his horse backwards. Lleywellyn was captured and murdered the next day at Cilmery, west of Builth Wells. A memorial stone stands on the spot in Cilmery village.

Passing right by River Cabin is The Wye Valley Walk, a 136-mile long distance trail from Chepstow in Monmouthshire, to the source of the River Wye at Plynlimon high in the Cambrian Mountains. Incorporate parts of the trail into a circular walk, or use the T4 bus to start your walk or return to River Cabin.

  • The Ramblers - 2 local groups, Four Wells Ramblers and East Radnor Ramblers, organise walks on Saturdays and alternative Sundays, and shorter walks on Wednesdays.

  • Brecon Beacons Park Society - Guided walks for experienced walkers. Well worth the £5 donation requested from non-members.

  • Brecon Beacons National Park - The National Park organise a range of walks and events.

  • Walking World - Subscription website where local walking routes can be downloaded. 

  • Geocaching - If your kids find walks a bit pointless, introduce them to geocaching, a treasure hunting game played throughout the world by old and young adventure seekers. There are several caches hidden in the vicinity. 

Cycling Up the Hill

Cycling

Sustrans' route 8, a 276-mile way-marked cycle route running from Anglesey in the north to Cardiff or Chepstow in the south, passes through just across the river from the River Cabin (connected by wonderful old suspension bridge).

Image by Patrick Hendry

Caving, Climbing & Abseiling

The Brecon Beacons is well suited for climbing and caving. The limescale caves under the LLangattock escarpment near Crickhowell are some of the longest in Britain.

Image by Melissa Regina

Pony Trekking

Image by Marcus Woodbridge

Attractions not to miss

  • Elan Valley - a beautiful area stretching 72 square miles with historic landscapes and thriving wildlife. The dams and reservoirs (pictured), the working legacy of remarkable Victorian engineering, add to the captivating and ever changing scenery. You can stroll, picnic or hike; cycle or mountain bike; bird watch, fish or safari! Cafe in visitor centre. West of Rhayader.

  • Talgarth Mill - working mill in Talgarth. Mill tours, on-site bakery and wonderful Baker's Table Cafe.

  • Tretower Court - restored 15th century house and gardens and 13th century stone keep.

  • Monmouth & Brecon Canal - one of our most beautiful and peaceful waterways, following the line of the lovely wooded Usk Valley; it is a true hidden gem.

  • Big Pit - go underground to see what life was like for the men who worked at the coal face. At Blaenavon, near Abergavenny.

  • The Museum of Welsh Life - over 40 original buildings re-erected from different parts of Wales, showing history of Welsh life. At St. Fagans, near Cardiff. 

  • Aberglasney Gardens - glorious 15th century house and gardens undergoing restoration. Near Llandeilo.

  • National Botanic Garden of Wales - near Carmarthen.

  • Welsh Castles - guide to our castles.

  • Erwood Station Gallery. - art & exhibits in the old railway carriages. Small tea room, picnic site, parking and river walk.

Watching a Movie

Festival, Events, Culture

  • Hay Festival - festival of literature and the arts in Hay-on-Wye over the late spring bank holiday. 

  • Royal Welsh Show Ground - hosts the Royal Welsh Show, the biggest agricultural show in Britain, over 4 days during the 3rd week of July. If you are coming to the area for peace and quiet, avoid this week. Also Smallholder and Garden Festival, Pony Sales and Antique Fairs.

Butterfly

Wildlife

Image by James Langley

Tourist Information

  • Pronouncing Welsh Place Names - understanding the meaning of Welsh place names will bring your map to life, especially as Welsh place names are largely descriptive.

  • Tales Of Wales - the famous diarist Reverend Francis Kilvert was curate at Clyro, near Hay-on-Wye, from where he walked the Radnor Hills on the other side of the river from the cabin. On one walk he came across the Rev John Price, one of Mid Wales' most eccentric characters.

  • Builth Wells Swimming Pool

  • Brecon Swimming Pool

  • OS 1:25 000 scale walking maps: Explorer Map 188 covers the area around River Cabin; for the Brecon Beacons National Park either East (Black Mountains etc) or West & Central (for Brecon and the west).

  • Cycling: Mid-Wales South Cycle Map (published by Sustrans, at a scale of 1:110,000).

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