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Adventures with Marcus - A Few Days In West Wales

Hello there.

Well here is a second instalment of AWM.

Cleopatra and I were able to get away for a few days in the Lampeter area of Ceredigion.

We stayed in Lampeter and were able to visit my sister, who we hadn't seen for awhile.

Day One - Lampeter

After leaving the M4 and then the A48, you are then on relatively narrow country roads from Carmarthen all the way to Lampeter.

A lot of these roads have a speed limit, on average, of 50mph, don't try going round the bends at this speed, as they are a bit on the sharp side.

We arrived in Lampeter, after a very scenic journey, an hour and 45 minutes after leaving the Cardiff area.

The map shows Lampeter's Welsh Quilt Centre, which is situated in the old Town Hall.

Lampeter, (Llanbedr Pont Steffan) often known as Llambed, is in Ceredigion at the confluence of the River Teifi and the smaller River Dulas (Afon Dulas).

The Norman castle of Pont Steffan was destroyed in 1187 having been conquered by Owain Gwynedd and its remains are now part of the foundations and campus of University of Wales, Trinity St David.

Lampeter is the smallest university town in both Wales and the UK.

We spent our first day exploring the town.

World famous collection of Welsh Quilts located in Lampeter’s old town hall. The exhibition changes throughout the year. There is a shop and a cafe as part of the centre.

Lampeter is also the birthplace of Welsh Rugby.

Monument to the Birthplace of Welsh Rugby

It is widely accepted that rugby was introduced to Wales by the Rev. Professor Rowland Williams, who became Vice-Principal of St David’s College in 1850 and who’d played Rugby Football as a student at Kings College, Cambridge.

The Welsh Rugby Union recognises Lampeter’s importance to the birth of rugby in Wales, and articles in the University’s archives mention playing rugby at Lampeter in the 1850s.

The first competitive match using the rugby rules wasn’t played until 1866.

The monument is situated on the university Campus between the Library and Canterbury Building.

Lampeter is home to the oldest University in Wales. Founded in 1822, by Bishop Burgess of Saint David’s.

The University now offers a mix of traditional and modern courses, and is pioneering teaching over the internet.

The grounds are open to the public, and you are welcome to visit.

The Founders Library, in the Old Building contains a fascinating collection of books, and hosts a variety of exhibitions throughout the year.

The University Chapel, also located in the Old Building is a must for any visitor.

Here are a few images of in and around Lampeter town.

Day Two - New Quay and Aberaeron

Today we visited New Quay and Aberaeron on the west coast. They are about 12 miles away from Lampeter.

Our first 'port of call' was New Quay.

A nice little place with a harbour and a beach.

We managed to park at the top of the town and walked downhill to the harbour.

Passing an interesting statue along the way.

Inspired by New Quay’s heritage as a community of fishermen, shipbuilders, sailmakers, navigators, and smugglers (to name a few).

Gwyntoedd Teg a Moroedd Tawel

Fair Winds and Following Seas

She has been inspired by the town’s rich seafaring history and the Welsh language.

The work speaks of the age of sail and the future of our oceans.

On a clear day, the peaks of Snowdonia are visible.

The sculpture draws on a history which saw Welsh schooners built on the beaches of Cei Newydd and Cei Bach, harness the wind to reach the Americas and beyond.

The common strand running through the work is the weather, especially the wind, which controlled the success of seafaring voyages and continues to dictate today’s ever-popular dolphin spotting trips.

The sculpture has also been inspired by mariners superstitions; the rituals associated with good fortune at sea — nearly all of which aim to offer protection from the weather.

The new deity will hopefully be read in a number of ways. She references New Quay's past and the people who have gone to sea, but she is also blowing a kiss to the future of our oceans. A symbol of luck for those who believe!

On a plaque is an inscription in English and Welsh which reads:-

Loaded with coal, the ships built in this bay

once tacked their way under canvas across oceans

and back. May those same winds breathe at your heels

to guide your steps along the shale and shoreline

of our coastal path.

Ar hanner eich taith

cymherwch hoe fan hyn, a chyn troi llygaid

i’r gogledd neu traed i’r de, rhowch gusan i’r Cei,

ei chychod, ei chwedlau a braich ei bae.

We had some fish 'n' chips near the harbour, which were very nice, and watched an unfortunate driver having his car removed by a tractor from the beach.

He must have broken down and the tide came in, there was water pouring from inside the car and the headlights were full of water as well. :(

Cleopatra didn't enjoy the walk back up the hill to the car park either.

So it was back in the car and off to Aberaeron!

It's the first thing you see when you approach Aberaeron are the charming, colourful houses adorning the town like jewels. Here's a place to come and relax - mooching around the harbour, exploring the independent shops and craft centres and enjoying a homemade cake and cuppa.

The town is right on the Wales Coast Path and The Coastal Way.

Ceredigion's coast is also well-known for wildlife including the famous Cardigan Bay bottlenose dolphin pods.

I tried the honey ice cream, it was delicious.

One of the things we noticed walking around the town where the large ammount of people conversing in Welsh, which was great to hear, also the flags flying from buildings.

The were, of course the national Welsh flag with the red dragon and the St. Davids flag. Two others caught my attention....

The Ceredigion flag.

The Welsh county of Ceredigion, known for centuries in English as Cardiganshire, has long been associated with a reguardant lion (looking backwards).

This design was attributed as the arms of the ancient Welsh ruler Gwaithfoed and his kingdom of Ceredigion, from which the modern county derives.

The other flag was this one.

Banner adopted by Owain Glyndŵr and thought to be derived from the counter-charged arms of the princely Houses of Mathrafal and Dinefwr.

It is currently in use by the National Eisteddfod for Wales, Cymdeithas yr iaith and widely amongst independentist groups.

Day Three - Cenarth

The last time I visited Cenarth was over 30 years ago!

Cenarth is a fascinating village on the border of Pembrokeshire, Ceredigion and Carmarthenshire.

The focus of the village is Cenarth Falls, a series of small waterfalls and pools on the river Teifi and a well-known salmon leap.

Cenarth is also famous for it's coracles!

A coracle is a small, rounded, lightweight boat of the sort traditionally used in Wales, and also in parts of the West Country and in Ireland, particularly the River Boyne, and in Scotland, particularly the River Spey.

The structure is made of a framework of split and interwoven willow rods, tied with willow bark. The outer layer was originally an animal skin such as horse or bullock hide (corium),[4] with a thin layer of tar to waterproof it – today replaced by tarred calico, canvas, or fibreglass.

There were no coracles in sight when we visited, but here is a picture of one.

Here is a picture of the falls, we were able to walk beside them on a recently constructed gangway that hugged one side of the river bank.

There is a very old bridge that crosses the river below the falls.

Cenarth Bridge, also spelt Kenarth Bridge, is a three arch bridge which spans the River Teifi at Cenarth, Carmarthenshire in Wales.

The bridge was built between 1785 and 1787 and designed by David Edwards, the son of William Edwards who built the Old Bridge at Pontypridd.

We stopped of at a cafe, near the bridge, for a nice pot of tea and some delicious bacon and sausage rolls.

Looked at some properties in Lampeter.

Put an offer in for one, which was accepted! O-o

Are we really committed to move?

Day Four - Chill Day in Lampeter

Today we just chilled in my Sisters garden and watched the birds.

Thoughts going through our heads about moving to West Wales.

One of my favourite birds we saw today were the Jays.

There were also visits by a variety of birds including Chaffinches and Bullfinches.

Chaffinch and Bullfinch

Circling overhead were some Red Kites

Day Five - Return to Cardiff

Well after a lovely break in West Wales with my Sister, we returned to Cardiff.

On the way we watched the traffic in the opposite lane heading to the west from Carmarthen.

Very busy. :(

We didn't realise at the time that Katuda was in the nearby Swansea area, so we were unable to meet up.


After a couple of days back at home we realised there was no way we could leave our beloved home in Cardiff.

No matter how much money we could have made on the exchange.

The seller in West Wales also loved his home too much as well, so we mutually pulled out of the agreement.

We hope we will never be tempted again. Lol


Well I hope you enjoyed coming along on our little trip and found it interesting.

Please upvote this dispatch if you liked it.

Here's to our next adventure. :D