When I started this blog, just a little over four months ago, I set a challenge of getting out and about more, which as a family we certainly have done.
But as any traveller knows, the more you start to travel and explore, the more you realise there is still so much more to see! And I’m just talking about Wales here!
So, rather than going down the route of making a list of resolutions for 2017 that I will likely break, I thought I would make a list of my top places in Wales that I would like to visit in 2017. In no particular order, here it is!
So, despite being born and bread in South Wales, I have never managed to make it to North Wales. This is of course shocking to all my English friends who seem to think that because it’s in Wales it must be just up the road! Its more like a four hour drive, but really that’s not much of an excuse is it!
So this is the year I’m hoping to put that right!
I would like to visit Portmeirion, the said to be slice of Italy in Wales. I would like to walk in Snowdonia National Park and I would like to play a bit of Ivor the engine by travelling first class on the Welsh Highland steam railways from Caernarfon to Porthmadog.
I love the look of Trefeddian Hotel, located between the Snowdonian mountains and the Cambrian coast, which looks gorgeous and is reportedly family friendly.
Camping in the Gower
I have been camping before, but not yet with my youngest in tow. She is a handful at the best of times, and so at 19 months of age, we have not yet risked camping with her, despite ourselves being keen campers.
But this year, I’m up for it, albeit for just a long weekend. I’m thinking a May bank holiday in the Gower.
It has been way too long since I have visited the West Gower. So that’s where I’d like to camp, and fit in visits to Worms Head, Rhossili and Llangennith. Kennexstone is a lovely campsite, ideal for families.
And, if all goes wrong I can always pop into my parents for a warm shower or a cuppa.
As yet I have not taken the boys to Pen-Y-Fan. They’re old enough to manage the walk now that they are 9 and 6 years old.
I would also like to try out some of the other walks and do some biking there. A couple of years ago we did the Taff Trail from Cardiff to Brecon which was amazing, although I couldn’t walk for two days after!
Whilst that would be too much for the boys, it would be great to do some of the Taff trail with them with a stop off for a pub lunch somewhere.
Again on the bike theme, for a day trip I would like to take the bikes and do the bike ride from Llanelli to Pembrey country park, all along the seafront.
We’ll take a picnic to eat in the park and bike it there and back. It’s pretty flat so the boys should be able to manage it ok and people have told me that the scenery is stunning.
On another day, I would also like to head to the Llanelli Wetland Centre where you can hand feed the rarest goose in the world, see flamingos and go pond dipping. I’ve heard great things about this place, but as yet we have never been.
Who doesn’t think of Castles when they think of Wales?! My boys love castles, but there are so many we have yet to visit. This year I would like to visit Cardiff castle and watch the knights jousting. Hopefully the sun will be shining and we’ll be able to take a picnic.
I would also like to visit Castle Coch and walk the Fforest Fawr Sculpture Trail. Then there’s Caerphilly Castle, the second largest castle in Britain.
Too many restaurants to choose from, but here’s three that I am really keen to try.
Slice is a very small restaurant in Swansea, which since it opened in 2014, has gained entry to the Michelin Guide and Good Food guide. Adam Bannister, who is one of the Chefs, won the Welsh title on the BBC’s Great British Menu in 2016.
I would love to go with friends and try out either their tasting menu or the al la carte, I’m not fussy. On the current menu I love the sound of their pan fried sea bass and poached lobster, with courgette spaghetti and baby fennel. Yummy!
The Lamb and Flag, Wick
Many of you will already know of the culinary delights dished up in the very popular Arbennig in Cardiff and of it’s cosy Emporium next door offering cakes and snacks.
Well I am very excited that the team are now taking over the Lamb and Flag in Wick. They’re opening up for business in January and I can’t wait to see what they do with the place in the future. I look forward to them serving up pub classics in a village which is just around the corner from us.
Leicesters Restaurant, Laleston
I can’t believe how close we live to Leicesters, and yet we have never been, despite all the raving reviews. It’s on my list to try in 2017. They have a mid-week market menu which has two course for £19.95.
Having just read the menu my mouth is drooling. They also have childrens menus so I’m taking that as it’s child friendly.
It’s always nice to fit in some girlie outings with my Mum and my sister. We already have a few things planned this year which I am really looking forward to.
Afternoon Tea at the Celtic Manor
My mum helps me out so much with the kids, I really don’t know where I would be without her. But we haven’t been out just the two of us for ages.
To say thank you for all she does, I would like to treat her to a Champagne afternoon tea in the Celtic Manor.
I am a big fan of the theatre and we are so lucky to have the Welsh Millennium Centre relatively close. We recently went to see Mary Poppins, which was spectacular.
Growing up my sister and I were big Streisand fans and so I am really looking forward to seeing Funny Girl later this year. Having seen the television series Cilla, in which Sheridan Smith was absolutely amazing, I can’t wait to see her playing the leading role of Fanny Bridges.
I also have Sister Act to look forward to and I’m hoping to see at least one opera before the years out.
So that’s it, much better than resolutions! What’s on your list of places that you would like to try out in 2017?