What to look for a last minute break or holiday in Wales

Wales Budget Last Minute Break

Wales is often overlooked for tourist, but those who try it will find a warm welcome. It is a fairly big area, about 8000 sq mi, so it is not exactly impossible to travel round from one location, it may be wise to split your trip up into North and South Wales. If you stay in one specific region though you don’t have to spend too much on petrol.

If you are on a budget you might avoid expensive attractions, such as The Doctor Who Experience. Likewise, you might also avoid expensive castles. Places like the famous Portmerion Hotel you also have to pay to get in, but any costs should be offset by how long you spend in a specific place.
There are other ways you can save money, they are buying tickets online or using your National Trust membership. The estates owned by the National Trust tend to be castles – Powis and Chirk for example – but they are definitely worth exploring.

Another way to save would be joining CADW, the Welsh version of English Heritage. Whether you save money by joining depends obviously on how many sites you wish to explore and how long your stay is. If you are only staying a week and prefer to explore towns or beaches it evidently won’t be value for money.

The best idea for those not willing to spend too much is to look around the various towns and villages of the region. There are a number of walled cities with a somewhat Mediterranean appearance to investigate.

An example of one of these is Tenby, which is known as “Little England Beyond Wales”. As well as its wall including the Five Arches gatehouse it also has beautiful beaches. St Catherine’s Island was used as Sherringford complex in a recent episode of Sherlock.

St Catherines Island in Tenby Pembrokeshire Wales

There are a number of sandy beaches around the coast of Wales, many out of the way from the usual tourist trail. If however you require stony beaches with rockpools, Wales has a supply of them too. Many of them are considered “family friendly” and are ideal for days out with kids. Alternatively you can seek out the secret beaches, which seem to be located around Gwynedd and Anglesey.

The cost of parking is always a problem in cities such as Swansea and Cardiff, so these may be places to avoid. Eating out may also prove difficult, unless you chose to take packed lunch. You could always chose to eat somewhere like a fast food restaurant?

There may be a problem finding accommodation at the last minute, chalet and campsites fill up very quickly. Probably the best alternative if these aren’t available is a roadside hotel or B&B. It may make sense to go off the beaten track to find a vacancy. An alternative to all these ideas may be youth hosteling.

If you are on a budget you may not want to travel by the many steam trains which criss cross the country, but you still may wish to visit stations and observe engines puffing along. Even though it is not a steam engine station the station which is shortened to Llanfair P.G. has thousands of visitors each year.

Steam train Snowdonia National Park

The national park of Snowdonia is one of the most picturesque parts of Wales. Even if you don’t feel like climbing to the summit of Snowdon, you can always enjoy the scenery of the various nature trails as well as numerous villages. It is not the only national park in Wales, there is also the Brecon Beacons and the Pembrokeshire Coast. The natural landscape certainly appeals, whether it be cliffs and coves or hills and moorland.

horse at the Brecon Beacons in Wales

Again moving across national parks you might find that you have to shell out for parking quite a bit but if you avoid the larger car parks this may bring prices down. The other option is to park once and explore the area by foot, it all depends on how fit you think you are. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t explore the other areas of Wales, though the more out of the way places tend to have the more expensive tea shops and restaurants. It may be better to research the cheaper places to eat first?

The main problem with those travelling from Southern England and the South-West is the Severn Bridge. Maybe it’s better to divert your journey so you avoid paying the toll here? This isn’t a problem if you are heading for North Wales but is usually not advised if it ends up making your journey more expensive.

It’s to be hoped that your holiday in Wales are enjoyable and you don’t spend more than you have budgeted for. Enjoy your time off!