Caerphilly’s lively, award-winning museum is built around the impressive Victorian winding engine that once sent men down into the depths of Elliot Colliery. The magnificent, original Victorian winding engine runs on the last Saturday of each month and it’s definitely worth seeing in action! Caerphilly’s history is long and rich, from Roman fortress to outpost of Welsh rebellion and industrial boom town.
It’s all told here at the town’s free museum. Until March 16th there is an art exhibition in the East Gallery with a wonderful collection of over 100 paintings by members of the Bargoed and district art society. With no set theme, the display is as individual as the artists themselves. In the West Gallery you’ll discover the hidden history of Caerphilly County Borough from Romans to revolutions, castles to Cavaliers, and the Iron Age to the Iron Works, there’s lots to see, do and explore!
Llancaiach Fawr Manor
Step back in time with a visit to Llancaiach Fawr Manor, a 16th century manor house fully restored and furnished as it would have been in 1645. The four-foot thick walls and stout wooden doors breathe with history and resonate with lives lived and lost long ago, brought back to life by costumed characters who tell their stories with passion.
You never know who you might meet when you visit Llancaiach Fawr Manor.
If you are lucky you might meet the master of the house, Edward Prichard or his wife Mistress Mary Prichard, although she prefers to go and visit her family and friends at Briton Ferry, rather than brave the air of the valleys, as she is a rather “sickly” soul. There are also the servants who no doubt have a grisly tale to tell. But whoever it is you can be sure of a warm welcome with someone pleased to show you around the master’s fine house.
It’s hard to imagine but once the breath-taking scenery of Cwmcarn Forest was blighted by slag heaps and coal mining with barely a tree in sight. Now completely reclaimed by nature this hidden gem is a wonder to behold with rolling hills and peaceful forests that are a hot spot for visitors wanting to enjoy the wild Welsh countryside.
Start at the visitor centre then on foot or by bike you’ll go on to discover the delights of the wooded valley with a lots of stunning views along the way. There’s a range of activities and events for all the family, children’s explorer trail, fishing, mountain biking and walking routes for all abilities.
If you want the full wild Wales experience why not hire one of the glamping pods for a night or two. Great for a fun family adventure or a romantic couple’s getaway, it’s the ideal way to see Cwmcarn Forest in all its glory.