Swallow Cottage sits high on a hillside one valley inland from the spectacular heritage coastline and its safe sandy beaches. Cardigan Bay is the first designated Marine Heritage Coast in Britain and all the nearby beaches are quiet and clean, with many having won Blue Flags. Local beaches within 5-6 miles (10-15 minutes by car) are Penbryn (National Trust), Llangranog, Tresaith and Aberporth. The famous Poppit Sands and Mwnt are 10 miles as is the resort of New Quay. Surfing and Body Boarding are popular. Rare Bottlenose dolphins, harbour porpoises and grey seals can be seen all along the coast and boat trips and sea fishing are available at New Quay and Aberaeron. Red Kites and Buzzards breed locally and Choughs are commonly seen on the sea cliffs. There are many excellent walks along the Pembrokeshire Coast Path, the Ceredigion Coastal Path and in the Preseli Mountains. Coarse, trout and salmon fishing is available locally as well as dry slope skiing, horse riding, pony trekking, quad biking, cycling and golf. You can try a gentle canoe paddle through the Cilgerran Gorge with its otters and kingfishers or a more invigorating trip on the international white-water course at Llandysul. Cycle or horse-ride on the Brechfa Forest trails, or watch the Motor Rally of Great Britain, held there in October each year. Cilgerran Castle and the Wildlife Centre, the Museum of the Welsh Woollen Industry, the Teifi Valley Steam Railway and the National Coracle Centre and Waterfalls at Cenarth are all close by. Newcastle Emlyn (4 miles) is our nearest small market town with its ruined castle, riverside walks and a good selection of pubs, cafés and shops. There are also banks, ATM's, launderette and leisure centre with swimming pool. You can visit woollen mills, cheese makers, honey farms and vineyards and enjoy Welsh lamb and freshly caught fish. Wales' No 1. Farm Shop full of local produce and only a few minutes away. The craft centres in the attractive Georgian town of Aberaeron and at Cardigan are well worth a visit and you will find local crafts trails offering a wide range of goods to tempt you, including paintings, pottery, glassware, jewellery, furniture and hand woven fabrics and clothing. Cardigan is the starting point for the Pembrokeshire Coast Path and home to a Walking Festival each October. All of Pembrokeshire is less than an hour on our quiet roads and Tenby is a popular resort in summer. Whilst there try to include a visit to the Museum of Speed at Pembrey, Pendine Sands or Dylan Thomas’ boat house at Laugharne, where some of his famous works were written. St. David’s with the Cathedral and Bishop’s Palace and Ramsey Island are worth a visit and the North Pembrokeshire coastline is rugged and spectacular. Oakwood Leisure Park (the Alton Towers of the West!) and Folly Farm provide an exciting day out for all the family. Haverfordwest has good shopping facilities and the drive over the Preseli Mountains on the B4329 has wonderful distant views. The Preseli Mountains, visible from the cottage, are full of prehistoric remains including the Pentre Ifan burial chamber and were the source of the Bluestones that make up the inner ring at Stonehenge. Newport and its beach are very popular and Fishguard is an interesting small town commemorating the last invasion of these shores by the French in 1797. For the adventurous a day trip to Ireland is available from Fishguard on the high speed Stena service. Crossing time is only 99 minutes! You can visit 'Ballykissangel', Waterford or take a run up to Dublin.
Aberystwyth is our county town and a ride up the cliff railway gives panoramic views of the town and bay. The return trip on the Vale of Rheidol Narrow Gauge Railway from Aberystwyth to Devil’s Bridge is a ‘must’ for most of our visitors, with dramatic waterfalls and spectacular mountain scenery. The National Library of Wales houses some of the country’s greatest treasures.
Just to the east are the wild Cambrian Mountains with several circular drives for a longer day out. For keen gardeners the National Botanic Garden of Wales is nearby. This £45 million Millennium showcase is set in 500 acres and centred on the Great Glass House, the largest single span oval glasshouse in the world, designed by Sir Norman Foster. This is the first major botanic garden in the UK for over 100 years. For those who prefer their gardens smaller Aberglasney is an oasis of peace and calm. Both are near Carmarthen and just 30 minutes drive. There is so much to do and see in this quiet and tranquil area that one visit may not be enough...............