10 of the best places to stay in the Wye Valley


Posted by Clare Willcocks on 29th March 2022

View from Symonds Yat

The beautiful Wye Valley in South Wales hugs the border with England and is packed with fantastic days out and glorious natural scenery.

Visit Symonds Yat Rock to admire the impressive view; get up close to the colourful residents of the Wye Valley Butterfly Zoo; head to the home of books, Hay-on-Wye; and take in the fantastic attractions of nearby Forest of Dean such as the sculpture trail and Puzzlewood. Even Abergavenny and the Brecon Beacons are within reach for a day out.

With family days out aplenty, mile-upon-mile of incredible walks, and eateries to tantalise the tastebuds at every turn, the Wye Valley is a top destination for a UK holiday. Below you’ll find our top suggestions for places to visit, or you can tap the button to have a browse of our holiday cottages in the Wye Valley.

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Montage of photos of Hereford

Hereford: best place to stay for city exploring

With its honey-hued cathedral, historic half-timbered houses and exciting cultural events, Hereford is a fantastic hub for those wanting to experience the best of the city and countryside. Spend a relaxed day taking in the museums, art galleries and independent shops, then head to the banks of the River Wye for a leisurely stroll alongside lush green fields.


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Montage of photos of Hay-on-Wye

Hay-on-Wye: best place to stay for bibliophiles

World famous for its books and bookshops, there is no better place to stay in the Wye Valley if you’re a bibliophile than Hay-on-Wye. The annual Hay Festival is a celebration of all things literary, with author talks, live performances, music, comedy and more. Even if your visit doesn’t coincide with the event, there are oodles of bookshops, antique shops and independent boutiques to help you get your culture fix.

Armed with a book and a tasty treat from one of the town’s bakeries, head for The Warren, a riverside meadow with small pebble beach, a fabulous place to relax on a warm summer’s day.


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Chepstow Castle

Chepstow: best place to stay for walkers

Sitting close to the River Severn, at the southern end of the Wye Valley, Chepstow’s many assets include its epic Norman castle, elegant road bridge and famous racecourse, home of the Welsh National. Besides its stand-out features, it’s also a hub for shopping and walking, with many trails, including Offa’s Dyke National Trail and the Wye Valley Walk, starting here.

In fact, it’s one of the top places to stay in the Wye Valley for ramblers, with its own dedicated walking festival in March. So, dust off those boots, take a deep breath of fresh Welsh air and set off on an adventure to discover the beautiful scenery on foot.


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Montage of photos of Monmouth

Monmouth: best place to stay for historic buildings

Monmouth is a historic market town on the River Monnow, a tributary of the River Wye, packed with museums, eateries, pubs and shops. Its iconic pedestrianised footbridge, complete with an attractive gatehouse, features in many a photo of the town, and riverside walks make for an enjoyable holiday activity.

Monmouth boasts historic buildings aplenty, 24 of which you can appreciate while ambling around the heritage trail. Take in blue-plaque buildings including Robin Hood Inn, Monmouth Priory and Monmouth County Gaol. There are many places to stay in Monmouth and the surrounding area, so finding your perfect holiday cottage will be a breeze.


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Ross on Wye

Ross on Wye: best place to stay for vintage shops

Set high up alongside the meandering River Wye, Ross-on-Wye is a picturesque town which has been a visitor destination for 250 years, thanks in part to 18th-century travel writer William Gilpin. The spire of St Mary the Virgin Parish Church pierces the skyline, and its labyrinth of streets house vintage shops, independent boutiques, chic galleries and plenty of welcoming places to stop for a bite to eat.

Enjoy a stroll through the recently established arboretum along the banks of the River Wye, or put your best foot forwards on one of the town’s self-guided walks. There are a whole host of places to stay in Ross-on-Wye and the surrounding area – perfectly positioned for exploring this delightful town.


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Montage of views of Symonds Yat

Symonds Yat: best place to stay for breathtaking views

Iconic Symonds Yat is best known for being a world-famous beauty spot, with breathtaking views from its lofty viewpoint, where you can admire peregrine falcons, goshawks, sparrowhawks, buzzards and ospreys. There are numerous waymarked trails through the forest for walkers and cyclists, and the village which straddles the river is Wye is one of the loveliest places to stay in the Forest of Dean.

Between the two sides of the village, known as Symonds Yat East and Symonds Yat West, runs a hand ferry – a passenger boat which is pulled on a rope by the ferryman across the river. Canoeing, climbing and caving can all be enjoyed here with experienced guides.


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Montage of views of Tintern Abbey

Tintern: best place to stay for religious history

As with many places to stay in the Wye Valley, Tintern is famous for one outstanding feature: its eponymous abbey. The historic gothic building lies in majestic ruins, an atmospheric attraction which is now under the care of Cadw.  

The village of Tintern is a vibrant little community, which has seen some big names pass through, including William Wordsworth, Alfred Lord Tennyson and JMW Turner, who were all inspired by Tintern Abbey. Nowadays, it’s a great spot for both walkers and cyclists, with plenty of trails and interesting attractions in the vicinity.


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Montage of photos of Ledbury

Ledbury: best place to stay for old architecture

Images of Ledbury are graced with elegant black and white timber-framed buildings, a flavour of its historic charm and rich culture. Its quirky stilted Market House still plays host to twice-weekly markets and an array of artisans sell their tempting wares in the town’s independent shops.

History buffs can also enjoy an interactive tour of the Master’s House, and take a wander down Church Street to admire the 16th-century Painted Room, the Old Grammar School which houses the Heritage Centre and Butcher Row House Museum.


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Couple walking in a forest

Coleford: best place to stay for railway enthusiasts

If you’re looking for places to stay in the Forest of Dean which are also convenient for accessing the towns, villages and countryside of the Wye Valley, the market town of Coleford is a wonderful choice. Once part of a thriving coal and iron ore mining area, the Great Western Railway Museum is now on the site of the former railway yard, home to several old locomotives and a miniature railway. For more train-related fun, head to nearby Perrygrove Railway – an exciting family day out.

Delve into a magical underground world at nearby Clearwell Caves, a natural cave system which sprawls beneath the Forest of Dean. And above ground, enjoy scenic walks and fantastic events – all of which can be enjoyed during a getaway to one of our Forest of Dean places to stay.


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Couple walking in a forest

Cinderford: best place to stay for visiting the Forest of Dean

Another former mining town in the Forest of Dean is Cinderford, which nowadays is a hub for many visitors to the area. Close to the town is The Dean Heritage Centre, a fantastic family attraction with a Gruffalo Trail, museum, cafe and gift shop.

Book onto a creative course at Cinderford Artspace, catch a film at the Palace Cinema or head to nearby Littledean Jail for a disturbing and gruesome insight into true crime.


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Stay in a self-catering cottage in the Wye Valley

Whether you’re looking for Ross-on-Wye places to stay, hunting for the perfect city hideaway in Hereford, or planning an upmarket trip to the Chepstow Races, we’ve got the perfect holiday cottage for you in the Wye Valley.

Wye Valley cottages

Disclaimer: Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information at the time of writing, please ensure you check carefully before making any decisions based on the contents within this article.