Eye catching news stories this week
Two very different news stories have caught my attention this week:
First there was Zip World, then came Bounce Below. How better to get even more fun from old quarries in North Wales than put the two together? Zip Below is coming to town!! I haven’t yet managed to get up to Snowdonia and experience all the delights on offer there but now I want to even more. My colleague Laura really enjoyed her experience and says she would definitely do it again. If you haven’t heard about it before then let me tell you all about it. Zip World Velocity and Zip World Titan are based in Bethesda and Blaenau Ffestiniog respectively. Velocity has the longest single zip line in Europe and, as it is possible to reach a speed of over 100mph, it is also the fastest. Titan offers a slightly more sedate experience (up to 70mph) on three zip wires (two in the winter) that total 8km. On the same site is Bounce Below, which is basically giant trampolines attached by chutes underground in the huge caverns created by the quarry workings. Have a look on YouTube to see what professional free runners make of it all. I very much doubt I would be anyway near as agile but it seems so much fun that I don’t think I would mind looking silly! These are due to be expanded and improved upon during this year and a junior section will also be created where children as young as 3 will get to have a go. The new Zip Below will feature a number of zip lines running through the caverns, interposed with tunnels, rope bridges and the like. The addition of what is essentially an underground playground for everyone who is a kid at heart will ensure that Zip World remains one of the premier attractions in Wales.
From adrenaline-fuelled thrill seeking to shopping! Swansea Indoor Market has been named Great Britain’s Best Large Indoor Market, beating off over 80 other nominees for the award. There has been a market in the city centre since the Middle Ages and at one point in the 1920’s had over 670 stalls! The latest building was erected after the 3rd market hall incarnation was destroyed when the city was bombed during World War II and is the largest of its kind in the country. You really can get everything from traditional Welsh gifts to hair extensions and the cacophony of noise and aromas makes for a great atmosphere. The market is renowned for its fresh produce, particularly the cockles and laverbread (a delicacy made out of seaweed). A few years ago, when in Swansea shopping for maternity clothes, I thought I would treat myself with a wander around the 109 stalls as I had always enjoyed my visits in the past. Unfortunately, due to my unusually sensitive sense of smell at that time, I couldn’t appreciate the market as I would have liked, and had to leave pretty sharpish to be honest, but it wouldn’t put me off going back. There are events held regularly in the market and the next one coming up is on 28 February where you can have your child’s portrait photograph taken for free – in Welsh costume of course in honour of St David’s Day on 1 March! So if you are going to be in the area take a look at swanseaindoormarket.co.uk and see what you would be missing out on if you didn’t at least pop in for a look!
Also of course the news is full of the build up to the start of the Six Nations tonight - Wales V England. Things may get tense in my house tonight but hopefully we will all still be talking tomorrow!