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Fall in love with Mid Wales on St Dwynwen’s Day

February 14 is a date that most people will recognise, but the Welsh version of Valentine’s Day, St Dwynwen’s Day (or Dydd Santes Dwynwen in Welsh) is also celebrated on January 25 every year.

St Dwynwen (Santes Dwynwen) was a fourth century Welsh princess who lived in what is now the Bannau Brycheiniog (Brecon Beacons) National Park. Read more here: https://www.visitwales.com/info/history-heritage-and-traditions/st-dwynwens-day

If you’re looking to spend more time with your loved one, whether it’s St Dwynwen’s Day, Valentine’s Day, or indeed any time of year, uncover a place you’ll love in Mid Wales.

MWT Cymru  (Mid Wales Tourism) has put together the following round-up for inspiration.

Powys

1. Rhayader 
– the Outdoors Capital of Wales
https://www.rhayader.co.uk/
https://elan-valley.co.uk/

Visit Rhayader, first town on the River Wye, home to the spectacular dams and reservoirs of the Elan and Claerwen Valleys. Get off the beaten path and explore everything that Rhayader has to offer, from relaxing walks to something to challenge the most experienced climbers.

Stay: Nannerth Country Holidays
https://nannerth.co.uk/the-loft/
Nannerth’s cosy farm cottage apartment for two, has its own hot tub and pretty roof terrace, located in the top part of Nannerth Fawr farmhouse with its own separate entrance. The Loft overlooks the gorgeous Wye Valley.

2. Presteigne – certified as the first International Dark Sky Community in Wales
https://www.visitmidwales.co.uk/information/product-catch-all/llanandras-presteigne-p1722301

What could be more romantic than stargazing? Presteigne, on the border of Wales and England, was once the county town of Radnorshire. Its High Street has a good range of independent shops, restaurants and pubs, and Presteigne is surrounded by unspoilt countryside.

Visit The Judge’s Lodging’s in the town centre, wander through the stunningly restored judge’s apartments, also the starting point for the Presteigne Town Trail. Book a guided tour of the Spaceguard Centre in nearby Knighton, a working observatory and the main source of information about near Earth objects in the UK.

Stay: Orchard Cottage
https://www.sidneynolantrust.org/your-visit/staying-here/
Stay in a cottage on the 250-acre Rodd estate formerly owned by Sir Sidney Nolan. The estate sits in the Hindwell Valley on the English Welsh border next door to Presteigne. Perfect for modern art lovers.

Haywood Cabin at Hergest Croft Gardens
https://www.hergest.co.uk/holiday-let
Hergest Croft Gardens extend over 28ha (70 acres) with more than five thousand rare trees and shrubs.  Described as ‘one of the finest collections of trees and shrubs in the British Isles’, the Gardens hold the UK National Collections of Maples, Birches and Zelkovas.

Haywood Cabin, cosy but spacious studio accommodation for two, is perched at the top of Hergest Croft Gardens, just above the Maple Grove, with the added benefit that you are free to visit outside opening hours and enjoy the gardens at their most peaceful.

3. Montgomery
https://www.montgomery-wales.co.uk/

With its medieval street layout, Town Hall, mix of Georgian, Victorian and timber framed buildings, you’ll find plenty of comfortable and friendly places to stay, as well as to eat and drink. The views across the Welsh border from Montgomery Castle are stunning. Find your path along the Montgomery Trails walking and cycling routes.

Visit nearby Kerry Vale Vineyard for wine tasting and a tour of the vineyard, or afternoon tea. Dine or stay at Mellington Hall Hotel, a Grade II Listed 19th Century house set in beautiful landscaped grounds.

In the town centre: The Dragon Hotel
https://www.dragonhotel.com/
The Dragon Hotel is an historic 17th century, former Coaching Inn with 20 en-suite bedrooms, many with exposed ancient timbers, a cosy restaurant and indoor swimming pool.

The Old Stores B&B
https://www.theoldstoresbnb.co.uk/
The Old Stores is a stunning Georgian house with two uniquely designed, deluxe guest rooms, retained period features alongside contemporary art and handwoven antique carpets.

Southern Snowdonia

4. Aberdovey | Aberdyfi

Aberdyfi, a small seaside village on the north side of the Dyfi Estuary in southern Snowdonia, is home to a series of circular walks to explore the Wales Coast Path. The southern shore of Aberdyfi along the Dyfi Estuary is a part of the UNESCO Dyfi Biosphere and the Dyfi National Nature Reserve.

Take a trip aboard the World’s First Preserved Railway. Running continuously since 1865, the Talyllyn Railway is a step back in time to the Victorian age. The railway starts on the southern Snowdonia coast at nearby Tywyn and snakes through the foothills of Cader Idris to Dolgoch Falls, Abergynolwyn and Nant Gwernol. Your ticket allows you to break your journey and extend your day: you could take a country walk, explore wooded paths, discover waterfalls or visit the beach.

Stay: Fron Haul
https://www.fronhaul-aberdovey.co.uk/
Central, seafront bed & breakfast in the picturesque village of Aberdovey, with views over the beautiful Dovey estuary and mountains beyond.

Trefeddian Hotel
https://www.trefwales.com/Choose between a sea view or hill view room. One of the Trefeddian’s superior rooms boasts a four-poster bed and private balcony – perfect for watching the stunning sunsets with a glass of Champagne.

5. Dinas Mawddwy

Mawddwy Walking Paths are based in Dinas Mawddwy, an unspoilt, hidden area of southern Snowdonia between Machynlleth and Dolgellau which is steeped in history.

The paths comprise eight, waymarked, circular walking routes, ranging from one-and-a-half to 12 miles, covering a total distance of 46 miles – do one or do them all! 
Walks & Trails – Dinas Mawddwy

Stay: The Brigands Inn, 1.5 miles away from the Mawddwy Walking Paths: https://www.brigandsinn.com/
Ten individually designed bedrooms with solid oak beds, some of them four-posters, deep mattresses, Egyptian cotton sheets and luxury duvets.

If you love your dog as much as your partner, this is also the place to come. The Brigands offers a specially made beer for dogs. They are also in Partnership with ‘Bob&Lush’ and offer a free sample when you stay with them, as well as a 50% voucher off their range of dog accessories.

Penmaenuchaf Hotel
https://penmaenuchaf.co.uk/
Perched high above the Mawddach estuary at the foot of Cadair Idris, you’ll find stone-fronted Penmaenuchaf. Alongside a peaceful getaway in one of thirteen uniquely designed rooms and suites, enjoy a relaxed dining experience of creative, modern British dishes. Head chef Thomas Hine has created a menu full of flavour using high-quality, seasonal produce, much of which is sourced right from within the national park itself.

6. Portmeirion
https://portmeirion.wales/
Designed by Sir Clough Williams-Ellis in 1925, Portmerion was built in imitation of a rustic Italian village, to demonstrate how a naturally beautiful place could be developed without spoiling it.

Hotel rooms and suites are located in both the main building of the hotel and in various locations around the beautiful surroundings of Portmeirion Italiante Village.

Ceredigion

7. Aberystwyth

Stroll along the seafront and picturesque promenade in Aberystwyth, a university town affectionately known as ‘Aber’. Aberystwyth is an ideal base to explore the landscapes of Ceredigion, the Cardigan Bay coast and the Cambrian Mountains.

Mid Wales Tours based in Aberystwyth is the only licenced tour guiding company in the UK providing clients with fully guided tours on a motorcycle and sidecar. The sidecar tours are for a maximum of two people – one in the sidecar and one as a pillion passenger.

Stay: There are plenty of places to stay and dine in Aberystwyth, including Harry’s Bar & Bistro, and The Richmond Hotel: https://www.richmondhotel.wales/

Gwesty Cymru
https://gwestycymru.com/
An artistic, colourful and luxurious small boutique hotel located on the seafront.

Brynarth Country Cottages
https://www.brynarth.co.uk/
Hud-y-Machlud / Magic of Sunset 
This cosy semi-detached cottage at Brynarth has a woodburner and a large conservatory where you can enjoy afternoon and evening sun. Surrounded by bird life, extensive gardens and hill views. You might hear the woodpecker or the night owl as well as frogs in the nearby pond. 

8. Tregaron

Visit Tregaron in the foothills of the Cambrian Mountains near the source of the river Teifi. The Cors Caron National Nature Reserve just two miles north of Tregaron boasts over 170 species of birds – some local, others migratory visitors from far flung regions of the world.

Stay: Y Talbot
https://ytalbot.com/
Y Talbot makes a fantastic base from which to explore the Ceredigion coastline and the Cambrian Mountains, ideal for cyclists, bikers and walkers. Nine Superior rooms and suites offer a high level of comfort with superb bathrooms. Listed in the Michelin Guide our bustling bar and 2 AA Rosette restaurant serve the best lamb, beef and cheeses from the Teifi Valley, fresh fish from Milford Haven and Cardigan Bay shellfish.

Cambrian Mountains Glamping and Camping
https://cambrianmountainsglampingandcamping.com/
Luxury Glamping at Tŷ Twt Teifi and Bwthyn Bach Brefi. These luxury glamping pods at the foothills of the Cambrian Mountains are perfect for that romantic break, with Dark Skies, a private hot tub and country views.

Felin Gogoyan Holiday Cottage has private fishing for 1½ miles along the river, a cosy wood burner and a relaxing hot tub.

9. Cardigan | Aberteifi

Cardigan sits on the border between Ceredigion and Pembrokeshire with superb beaches & coastal walks nearby. In The Welsh Wind Distillery, an award-winning craft distillery, just north of Cardigan, specialises in the production of premium spirits including gin and 100% Welsh whisky. The distillery also houses a shop and offers gin-making and gin tasting experiences.

Stay: Cardigan Castle
https://cardigancastle.com/stay/
Stay in Ty Castell, Cardigan Castle’s contemporary, river-view B&B rooms and enjoy a locally-sourced, traditional Welsh breakfast at the on-site restaurant, 1176.

Penbontbren Luxury B&B
https://www.penbontbren.com/
Penbontbren Luxury Bed and Breakfast in West Wales is nestled in 18 acres of grounds, surrounded by Welsh countryside with views towards the Preseli mountains and only 2 miles from wonderful national trust beaches.

Find more couples escapes in Mid Wales, here: https://www.visitmidwales.co.uk/plan-and-inspire/whos-visiting/couples-escapes

All the businesses included in this article are members of MWT Cymru, the regional tourism trade organisation for Mid Wales which represents nearly 600 tourism and hospitality businesses across Powys, Ceredigion and Southern Snowdonia.

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