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This new Bradt guidebook is the first solely dedicated to a specific part of Wales, encompassing the country's southern third. Covering Monmouthshire, Glamorgan, Carmarthenshire, Pembrokeshire and Brecon Beacons National Park, this guide provides in-depth coverage of a broad range of attractions. Catering for walkers, heritage aficionados, wildlife lovers, families, mountain bikers, foodies and city-lovers, it furnishes all the practical information you need to plan and enjoy time in South Wales.
The region boasts 400 miles of coastline, along which some of Britain's finest beaches nestle between comely resorts and traditional fishing villages, including in the dramatic Pembrokeshire Coast National Park. Inland, The Valleys encompass a former powerhouse of the British coal-mining industry where abandoned collieries have become thriving tourist attractions in a World Heritage landscape. Alternatively, enjoy peace and quiet in the Brecon Beacons, one of few British International Dark Sky Reserves, characterized by high peaks, wild moorland and thrashing waterfalls. From here, mountains extend east to the renowned book town of Hay-on-Wye. In South Wales, you can embrace history, landscape and culture in quick succession.
Hikers come from all over to walk the Wales Coast Path, the first footpath worldwide to extend the entire length of a country's coastline. Bike Park Wales in Merthyr is Britain's leading mountain-bike center, while St David's Peninsula offers thrilling coasteering and the Gower Peninsula exciting surfing. The region's special wildlife ranges from puffins and deer on offshore islands to porpoises and dolphins powering across sheltered bays.
Urbanites will love the Welsh capital of Cardiff, fast becoming one of Britain's most dynamic cities, following exciting regeneration crowned by the Millennium Centre. Wales is nicknamed the Land of the Castles, with more fortifications per square mile than any European country: South Wales boasts twenty where your imagination can run riot. Unexpected treats gather here too: visit Europe's second-tallest sand dune (The Big Dipper in Merthyr Mawr), the UK's smallest city (St David's), or even vineyards and whiskey distilleries.