Family Day Out: Caerphilly Castle

The first week of the Easter Holidays brought us some lovely Spring weather. Knowing that the sunshine can disappear as quickly as it arrives, we made the most of it with a trip to Caerphilly Castle.

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Sitting right in the middle of the town of Caerphilly and surrounded by an extensive moat, the castle is partly ruins with one ominously leaning tower, although in nice weather this makes for a pleasant walk.

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Pip was thrilled to find dragons in the castle grounds!

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These sculptures were amazing, such beautiful detail. The red dragon has apparently been at the castle for a long time, while the blue was added more recently.

Signs warned us not to approach the geese that waddled about, as they’re nesting at the moment.

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We walked up a winding narrow staircase to reach the top of the castle. If I’m honest, I’m not keen on spiral staircases, particularly ones with ancient slippery steps and even less so when my daughter happily bounds up them when I’d rather she take her time. There’s no stopping little adventurers! However, I’d say the view from the top is well worth the climb.

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I would say that this is not a suitable day out for pushchairs or wheelchairs. There’d be very little you could see and even navigating the grounds could be tricky.

The price of entry was perhaps a little expensive for what’s on offer. £7.95 for adults, £5.20 for students, senior citizens and under 16s or £23.70 for a family ticket (2 adults and up to 3 children). I understand that maintaining an ancient structure costs money and that’s probably reflected in the price but there wasn’t a lot to interact with. I suppose I’m comparing that with Cardiff Castle, which as Cardiff residents, we only have to pay £6 every 3 years for our Castle Keys for unlimited entries and reduced event prices.

After spending a couple of hours walking around the castle and the obligatory visit to the gift shop, we ended our day out with a drink in the visitor centre cafe.

Overall, we enjoyed this trip. It was a good learning experience and an enjoyable walk outdoors in the Spring sunshine!

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Holiday Part 2 – Meeting the Animals

This is the second part of a series of posts about our family holiday on a farm.

On our first morning on the farm, we took a walk around the farm with a bag of goodies for our new neighbours – the animals!

There were goats.

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Sheep.

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A donkey.

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Chickens.

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A lovely big pig called Serena.

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Two mini pigs, who managed to cover us in mud when they jumped up at their fence for some vegetable scraps!

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I think our favourite was Tinkerbell the miniature pony but I think because we spent lots of time feeding her carrots and stroking her, I didn’t get a picture of her!

The animals made a really lovely addition to the holiday. Pip loved feeding them. I think we all did!

There was also a riding school with lots of horses at the farm but I’ll save that for another post!

Holiday Part 1 – Journey, Arrival & Settling In

So we’re now home from our holiday! We’ve spent a week on a farm near Abergavenny with Husband’s Mum and Nan. It’s been a really lovely time and we’ve all had lots of fun times.

Getting to our holiday destination took a bit of logistical planning. Husband’s Mum and Nan were driving there and could divert to our house first but we couldn’t all fit in the car with luggage too. So they helpfully picked up our luggage then left for the farm while we took the train. This was a good plan, aside from our train being hours after the car left, leaving us at home with a rather frustrated child who couldn’t really understand why her Nanny and Nan Nan had left without us when she’d been told that we’d be spending a whole week with them.

Eventually it was time to leave. The journey to Abergavenny was smooth and simple then we were picked up at the station to be taken to the farm. It was a really pretty setting. Surrounded by mountains and fields, plus having quite a few very friendly animals, the farm was a really lovely place to spend the week. Our cottage was very spacious, having three bedrooms so Pip had plenty of space to herself plus the luxury of picking which of the two single beds in her bedroom to sleep in each night – there was lots switching about!

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By the time we arrived at the cottage, there wasn’t much to do beyond eating dinner and settling down for the evening. The TV wasn’t working but luckily we had brought a nice collection of our favourite board games to occupy us with!

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Pip settled in immediately and went to bed after a story. Her Nanny had kindly bought her a new set of books especially for the week, all different stories about bears. This was particularly handy as somehow I had completely forgotten to bring any books!

I’ll post the next part of our farm holiday tomorrow!