Holiday Guide

The Wales Cottage Holidays team is here to offer assistance, so if you have already booked and are looking for particular activities close by or need a property in a specific attractions locality we are on hand to advise you. Do give us a call on 01686 628200 or send us a message.

Visit our area guides at the bottom of the page for our favourites and recommended things to do whilst holidaying in Wales

Attractions and Activities

Wales is jam-packed with a full range of attractions and activities to choose from.

Whether you are an adrenaline junkie and love your outdoor pursuits, a heritage buff who loves nothing more than discovering a fascinating museum or a family looking for ways to keep everyone entertained and having a good time there will be something for you.


For each area we give details of beaches that have a Blue Flag award, a Green Coast Award, a Seaside Award or are Recommended in the Good Beach Guide. Whether you want to go walking, running, swimming or just relaxing, they are there for your pleasure to add to the enjoyment of a Wales Cottage Holidays self-catering cottage holiday.

With regards to dogs on beaches in Wales, note that when, for example, beach details include ‘dog restrictions apply May to September’ this generally means that dogs are allowed all year round but from 1 May to 30 September they are not permitted on some parts of that beach.

The Blue Flag Campaign is administered in Wales by Keep Wales Tidy. There are 32 criteria for Blue Flag beaches covering water quality, cleanliness, management and safety information and education; the Blue Flag can only be flown when all the criteria are met.

Assessors check each beach during the bathing season to ensure that standards are maintained. The aim of the Green Coast Award is to acknowledge those beaches which meet ‘Excellent’ bathing water quality standards but which are also prized for their natural, unspoiled environment.

The distinctive yellow and blue flag denoting a Seaside Awards is given to beaches that meet mandatory standard water quality and are clean, safe and well-managed. Because beaches are all very different in character, the Seaside Awards are split into two categories, resort and rural.

A resort beach, usually found in or near towns, provides toilets, car parking, access and facilities for disabled people and restricts access for dogs.

The Good Beach Guide is compiled by the Marine Conservation Society, the UK charity that cares for our seas, shores and wildlife; they only recommend a beach for bathing if it had excellent water quality in the most recent tests.

Castles and Gardens

One of the top choices for overseas visitors of things to do in Britain is to go on a tour of the castles of Wales! And it's hardly surprising since there are hundreds packed into our small country. Most are now in ruins but there still remain some 200 to visit, ranging from earthwork castles, through medieval castles and castles of the Welsh princes, the formidable castles of Edward 1 and later castles up to the C19th.

Wales also has some of the most beautiful gardens in the whole of Britain. One of the advantages of our climate is that Welsh gardens tend to be wonderfully green and plants grow bigger! Many of the best known and historic gardens are close to the coast, too, but there is a wide variety of locations - and an excellent choice of nearby cottages from which to base your holiday.

Festivals and Events

Somewhere, sometime, something is going on.

For visitors who love and appreciate their food and drink, Wales has a number of major food festivals, beer and cider festivals plus the regular Farmers Markets that are held in many towns once or twice a month.

The unspoilt natural environment and rich agricultural traditions of Wales lend themselves to abundant markets stacked high with produce and the festivals combine this with many other events including kitchen demonstrations, celebrity chefs, Foodie Forums, master classes, tutored tastings and talks showcasing some of the most skilled, passionate and knowledgeable practitioners in the country alongside local and regional talent.

For self-catering visitors to Wales Cottage Holidays, these festivals and markets provide an opportunity to use local produce during their holiday – and also to take with them when they return home!

Golf Courses and Clubs

For golfers, Wales is a country perfectly designed for the game, and there are some 200 courses set amidst the most spectacular scenery with inspirational links, parkland courses in mountain settings, championship courses in the shadow of mighty medieval castles and modern golfing resorts; indeed, Wales really is a golfer's paradise. Here we feature some of the courses that may be of interest to Wales Cottage Holidays guests staying in one of our self-catering cottages, farmhouses and bungalows.

Heritage Railways

Wales has some of the best steam Heritage Railways in the UK with narrow gauge lines such as the Welsh Highland Railway, the Ffestiniog, the Talyllyn, the Brecon Mountain Railway and the Vale of Rheidol combining stunning scenery with dramatic climbs into the hills and mountains. And there is a range of other delightful lines including the Llanberis Lake Railway, the Welshpool & Llanfair, Bala Lake, Teifi Valley and the Corris Railway. Plus we have two standard gauge lines recreating the heyday of the Great Western Railway – the Llangollen Railway and the Gwili Railway.

Mountain Biking

The beautiful Welsh countryside, mountains, lakes, forests and hills, make the ideal setting for mountain biking. There are several purpose-built centres, some well-known trails and some lesser-known rural routes.

Nature Reserves

Natural Resources Wales brings together the work of the Countryside Council for Wales, Environment Agency Wales and Forestry Commission Wales. This and a number of other organisations manage a wide range of Nature Reserves throughout Wales for self-catering cottage visitors to enjoy.

The RSPB (Royal Society for the Protection of Birds) also has Reserves in many parts of Wales - see choughs swooping above coastal cliffs and red kites soaring over rugged woodland. Hear noisy northern gannets nesting on Grassholm Island, and the bubbling calls of black grouse among the lek.

Forestry, National Park, Dwr Cymru/Welsh Water and Wildlife Visitor Centres are also featured.


Although small, Anglesey has many attractions and activities


The small island of Anglesey can be found just off the coast of North west Wales and is the perfect location for coastal activities. Visitors often enjoy water-related ventures such as scuba diving and guided boat trips in the surrounding waters.


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Caernarfon Castle in Snowdonia

Snowdonia & Lleyn Peninsula

Snowdonia and the Lleyn Peninsula have many historically-important castles that are scattered around this beautiful part of Wales. They are open to the public, and have some spectacular gardens and some truly stunning scenery.


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North East Wales

North East Wales is never short of things to do - activities range from world-famous international music festivals to traditional agricultural shows and Real Ale trails. This area of Wales has a variety of events to offer throughout the year.


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Brecon Mountain Railway

Mid-Wales & the Brecon Beacons

The area that runs through the centre of Wales has some wonderful, untouched patches of countryside. Visitors are often seen taking a trip of one of the heritage railways, and see the unrivalled views of the picturesque countryside.


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Barafundle Bay

Pembrokeshire & West Wales

An area dominated by coast, you can relax on the exquisite beaches in Pembrokeshire and West Wales. You may even be lucky enough to see our fantastic dolphins - we have one of the largest pods of dolphins in the UK!


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Cycling in South Wales

South Wales

This ever-popular part of Wales is ideal for lovers of the outdoors. Cyclists, Hikers, Walkers will all be spoilt for choice with miles and miles of marked routes over all kinds of terrain through truly stunning surroundings.


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