The Brecon Beacons offer 519 square miles of diverse and spectacular landscape, with unspoilt wilderness bristling with old forests and lakes, and stunning waterfalls nestling amongst netherworld grottos and wild plains. Rent one of the characterful Brecon Beacons holiday cottages among the most beautiful landscapes in Europe and return to nature in this intriguing centre of Wales. Sympathetically converted homes, idyllic hideways and remote farmhouses sit in the shadow of the country's highest red sandstone summit, Pen y Fan. This russet otherworldly peak looks down over prehistoric and roman remains and attracts visitors from around the world.
As well as it's renowned scenery, the Brecon Beacons offers a multitude of activities; access of lovely bike trails, peaceful tracks, towpaths, cycle routes and ancient bridleways - the area's cycling is second-to-none and you can enjoy them all from your doorstep. There are around 400 mountain climbs in the National Park, with inclines to test even the most experienced explorer. Walking, horse riding, and caving are also on offer, the list really is endless. Whether for an short activity break, or a relaxing longer stay, reserve a rustic retreat in timeless Brecon and bask in its wild beauty.
The Craig-y-nos Country Park is also a fantastic day out - it's a park that sits inside a park, namely the Brecon Beacons National Park. You can walk, picnic, play by the two rivers and enjoy the tree-shaded walks, some of which have hard surfaces suitable for pushchairs. Even the four-legged member of the family is welcome on a lead.
If you'd like someone else to do the driving through the magnificent Welsh scenery, then a trip on the Brecon Mountain Railway could be the perfect antidote to otherwise busy days. This is a wonderful narrow gauge steam railway. Located near Merthyr Tydfil, it offers all-weather observation coaches that are pulled at an altogether leisurely pace behind a vintage steam locomotive to Dol-y-Gaer. Passing along the Taf Fechan Reservoir and taking in much of the wonderful scenery of the Brecon Beacons National Park this is perhaps one of the most popular railways in the country. You can nip off the train at the old village of Pontsticill with its 15th Century buildings and remnants of an old lime kiln. The commanding views across the Brecon Beacons necessitate a camera, and a ramble along the reservoir is a must. You can visit the workshops for the railway located in the town and or pop in for afternoon tea in the traditional tearooms.
If you want a really memorable family day out, a visit to the Dan-yr-Ogof national showcave centre near Swansea is a must. As well as the main attraction, there's the Bone and Cathedral Caves with their journey through deep history, the Iron Age Village where you can build your own hut, a fabulous Dinosaur Park that is one of the largest in the world and the wonderful Shire Horse centre where you can meet these fabulous animals. There are altogether 10 separate attractions at Dan-yr-Ogof, so be prepared to return again to see what you might have missed on your first visit!
Holiday cottages in Brecon Beacons also allow you to visit the ancient market town of Llandeilo, which is knee-deep in culture and castles, the most striking of which is Carreg Cennen Castle, with its incredible location on a sheer limestone crag cliff and rocky hilltop. It has been said that use of the site dates back all the way to the Dark Ages and there is also evidence of Roman occupation. Unusually for a castle, there is a comprehensive collection of agricultural artefacts, rare and unusual farm animals and Victorian plants on the site.
And so on to the town of Brecon, the commercial centre of southern Powys, situated where the Usk and Honddu rivers meet, with delightful narrow Georgian and Jacobean building-lined streets.