Carmarthenshire (Sir Gaerfyrddin) is one of the three counties which make up West Wales. Its rolling green countryside, shaped by its farming history, and the fact that it is home to some of Wales’ most famous gardens has led to the county being known as ‘The Garden of Wales’. Carmarthenshire is renowned for a fine range of agricultural produce and its thriving local markets are a showcase for award-winning food and drink. The secret of its success lies in its lush green land and network of rivers and estuaries.
Carmarthenshire castles Carmarthenshire is a county of myth and legend and within its borders lie some of the most authentic and atmospheric castles in Europe. Some of these ancient ruins are so well preserved that it’s like stepping back in time, with the best examples being the romantic mountain castle of Carreg Cennen and the coastal castles of Kidwelly and Laugharne, with their turrets, towers and secret passages.
Gardens to visit in Carmarthenshire
The National Botanic Garden of Wales in the Tywi Valley has the largest glasshouse in the world maintaining a Mediterranean climate throughout the year and housing a great number of rare species from around the world. Activities and events take place at the gardens all year making it a popular day out for all ages in all weathers.
Aberglasney House and Gardens is an ancient estate undergoing restoration. The house and its 10 acres of gardens are also set in the beautiful Tywi valley. The three walled gardens showcase an extensive range of rare and unusual plants along with an Elizabethan/Jacobean cloister and parapet walk.
Dinefwr Park and 12th century Castle is now a National Trust property near Llandeilo, enclosing a medieval deer park. There are several beautiful walks in the Park and frequent special events are held throughout the year.
Other places in Carmarthenshire Carmarthen was the creative home of Dylan Thomas, one of the most important writers of the last 100 years. He completed the major part of his work, including Under Milk Wood in The Boathouse at Laugharne, which is open to visitors.
The Millennium Coastal Park has been converted from over 1,000 hectares of industrial land into a landscape that complements and enhances the natural beauty of the estuary. The award-winning park is most impressive for its scale and beauty where 22 kilometres of coastline along the Loughor Estuary has been transformed into a unique array of tourist attractions, wildlife habitats and leisure facilities.
The cycle path on the Machynys peninsula provides a great (and flat!) route with excellent views over the mud flats of the Burry Inlet, which is internationally important for its bird life. The estuary is a Site of Special Scientific Interest and is within the Carmarthen Bay Special Area of Conservation.
Another site of conservation is The National Wetlands Centre which is family orientated. Open all year, the centre provides a range of facilities and activities from canoe safaris to hand feeding some of the rarest birds in the UK. With over 600 species of the world’s most spectacular birds, including the bright pink Caribbean Flamingo, it is a great place to bring the family.