Here at River Tawe Holiday Apartment you will find a rural escape with easy access to city life. Situated in between Swansea and Brecon, This is an ideal base from which to explore.
Whether you fancy a fun-filled family day out at Aberavon or exploring the caves and ancient monuments of the Gower Peninsula, fine dining in the Mumbles or a cocktail at sunset by Swansea Marina, our coastline has a lot to offer.
The village of Ystradgynlais links directly through to central Swansea by both the A4067 and the Sustrans cycle path 43 part of the National Cycle Network. This cycle path consists of mainly off-road cycle paths and some stretches of safe road and dedicated cycle lanes. Both the road and cycle path provide excellent access to Swansea Bay and the Gower. Download this map for more information on the Swansea Valley Trail and download this brochure Traffic Free South Wales
Family Fun Days
For family days out, there are so many options:
You could choose Aberavon Seafront. It has a new swimming pool, outdoor kids splash water play, crazy golf, huge and exciting play area and excellent cafes.
Why not head to Mumbles pier to play in the arcade or visit the lifeboat house and then find the secret beach at the end of the pier for rock pools and lovely sand. Take a trip to Verdi’s cafe for pasta or pizza and an ice cream. With quick service, a floor length glass frontage with views over the bay, and plenty of outdoor seating, it’s a favourite with families. –Verdi’s – Italian Restaurant and Ice Cream Parlour – great views quick service
Let the kids try rock climbing and swimming at LC2: Swansea’s Leisure pool and sports centre. Afterwards they can enjoy the five level indoor play centre, then go for some delicious lunch by the marina at a waterside cafe or bar like The Swigg. You could follow this with a trip to one of Swansea’s many museums or art galleries. –The Swigg – Marina Side Bar and Cafe with excellent food and drinks.- National Waterfront Museum –Dylan Thomas Centre
An Elegant Adventure
Start with an early lunch at Norton House served from 12-2.30, £13.95 set menu for two courses. Then why not head to the shops and boutiques and beauty parlours of The Mumbles for some retail therapy and pampering.
The Brecon Beacons contains two stunning areas, which can often be confused due to the similarity of their names. The westerly one is Black Mountain or Y Mynydd Du, and it is on the Border between Carmarthenshire and Powys, above Upper Brynamman. The Black Mountains are over towards Crickhowell and Talgarth, to the east of the Brecon Beacons, and they form a border separating Wales from Herefordshire.
While either area is well worth a visit, the Black Mountain is much closer to Ystradgynlais and with limestone outcrops and tremendous views, it is a place to explore the rugged hills and try to spot the rare alkali loving plants found in the area.
There are a couple of car parks along the A4069 one with spectacular views and picnic benches and sometimes a burger or ice cream van! The other allows for exploration of old Limestone Quarry Known as Herberts Quarry, good for climbing and boldering. There are several caves in this area so be cautious with younger children.
From Ystradgynlais Follow the road to Cymllynfell at the junction with the A474 at the north of Gwaun-Cae-Gurwen, and travels through Lower Brynamman and Brynamman. The route then crosses over the Black Mountain range of the Brecon Beacons and emerges near Felindre near Llangadog. It then crosses through Llangadog and continues northeast until the junction with the A40 at Llandovery. It reaches a height of 493 m (1,617 ft) above sea level.
Less than 20 minutes away from the River Tawe Holiday Apartment are several places you can park to explore waterfall country. Start at the Waterfall Centre in Pontneddfechan, where they will let you know about all the routes you can take, and the geology of the area, which causes such spectacular waterfalls. Dinas Rock also has a few walking routes of differing length and difficulty, including one really short one. There are also harder routes where you can spend all day taking in many of the Falls. The village has several pubs and a tearoom that is open at weekends with a Children’s play area that is always open behind it.
Welsh Actor Luke Evans mentions “Llyn Y Fan’s Great Beauty” in Visit Wales’s amazing new advert promoting Wales. Llyn y Fan is a lake in the Brecon Beacons or in fact two lakes. Llyn y Fan Fawr and Llyn y Fan Fach lie on a mountain just north of Ystradgynlais, where River Tawe Holiday Apartment is situated.
It is a short drive and a beautiful walk to visit these ancient and mysterious lakes which have been the subject of legends throughout the ages.
The Red book Of Hergest, an ancient manuscript, written just after the year 1382, holds a tale that starts by the shores of Llyn y Fan Fach and the same story is also recorded in the Mabinogion.
Hendryd Waterfall is South Wales’s tallest waterfall with a 90ft drop. It is situated near Coelbren on the River Nant Llech.
A spectacular and mysterious sight especially as for the sure footed it is possible walk behind the falls.
The Fossil Trees which stand outside Swansea Museum were found here by Sir William Edmond Logan who later became the head of the Geological Survey of Canada.
The waterfall was also the entrance to the bat cave in the film Batman – The Dark Knight Rises.
It is a steep walk that can sometimes be slippery, wear waterproofs if planning to get close.
Travelling a little further to Pontneddfechan and the Waterfall Centre, where there is information given on the many stunning walks available some easy ranging up to huge adventures taking in up to nine waterfalls in one day.
Guarding the entrance to a picturesque and mysterious valley, called Penwyllt, full of caves, quarries, ancient monuments, cosy pubs and stunning scenery lies the Sleeping Giant. This hill called the Cribarth looks like a huge sleeping giant. Legends have it that the giant will awaken to help his people in a time of need.
Overlooking the village of Abercrave, the Cribarth hill according to Nigel Phillips on the Brecon Beacons park society website:
“Cribarth must be one of the most intensively quarried mountains in Wales, but this actually adds to its appeal. The hey-day for this activity was between the opening of the Swansea Canal in 1794 and the 1890s. Limestone, silica rock and rottenstone were extracted in huge quantities for the iron, copper and tin industries further south around the Swansea Valley.
There were thirty-three large quarries and innumerable smaller ones, served by 10.5 miles of tramroads and railways and by eighteen inclined planes, four of which ran steeply down to the canal at Abercrave.”
This has created a beautiful and rugged landscape full of mystery due to the presence of two cairns and the presence of the valley with Craig y nos Castle, a hotel and Craig y nos Country Park, which contains 40 acres of Scenic Park Land.
The valley also contains the National Showcaves Centre a major tourist attraction as well as the Caving Club at Pewyllt.