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Holidays in Llangollen

A historic town on the edge of the Berwyn Mountains

UK | Wales | North Wales | Llangollen
The Pontcysyllte Aqueduct

Nestled in a quiet spot near Wales’ border with England, Llangollen is a historic Welsh town best known for its annual Eisteddfod and the breath-taking Pontcysyllte Aqueduct, which passes over the Llangollen Canal.

Steeped in history, Llangollen is Welsh for “Collen’s church”, named after a monk who settled here and established a church on the banks of the River Dee. The oldest construction in the town, Castell Dinas Bran, was once an Iron Age fort, though what remains today is the ruins of a medieval fortress built in around 1260 to protect from the invasion of King Edward and his English armies.

Valle Crucis Abbey

Another historic building, the 13th century Valle Crucis Abbey, can be found two miles away in the small village of Llantysilio. Although it stands mostly in ruins, you can still visit and have a look inside some of the monastery, including the monks’ dormitory.

Llangollen is undoubtedly most famous for the International Musical Eisteddfod, which it hosts annually. This hugely popular event brings together musicians, singers and dancers across a variety of disciplines to take part in more than 20 competitions. The Llangollen Fringe Festival also takes place every July, again promising a variety of entertainment from music to drama and comedy.

Outside of when the festivals take place, Llangollen has plenty more to offer culture lovers in the form of its museums. Set within an unusual circular building, Llangollen Museum is home to a wealth of information on the town’s history, while the Llangollen Motor Museum houses a collection of more than 60 cars, motorbikes and other vehicles dating from before 1975.

Another excellent day out can be found at Plas Newydd, a gothic-style stone-built house which was once home to the ‘Ladies of Llangollen’. Inside, the house has a stunning oak-panelled interior, with detailed carvings, and visitors can explore many of the rooms to learn more about 18th century life in this house. It’s also surrounded by ten acres of spectacular gardens, which are home to everything from shaded woodlands to rose gardens.

The Llangollen Steam Railway promises yet another look into the past, offering visitors the opportunity to ride onboard a classic 1950s carriage, powered by a steam engine. Following the River Dee, the railway transports you ten miles away to the picturesque market town of Corwen.

“Llangollen has plenty to offer culture and history lovers…”

,p>Llangollen also has a variety of places where you can stop for refreshments and recharge your batteries. The Dee Side Café Bistro sits in the heart of the town and offers hearty meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner, while The Corn Mill is another popular option for a quality meal in a scenic location.

If you’ve been inspired to base your next holiday in this charming corner of Wales, take a look at our full collection of Llangollen cottages for more inspiration.

While you’re there

Llangollen Steam Railway

A charming classic railway following the River Dee to the nearby town of Corwen

Plas Newydd

A stunning 18th century house surrounded by ten acres of landscaped gardens

Valle Crucis Abbey

Explore the ruins of this well-preserved 13th century monastery

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