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Visit Wales is set for a sizzling summer of events and activities

July 2014

New attractions, breaks and experiences

With the school summer holidays almost upon us, Wales is well prepared to excite and entertain both young ones and grownups alike. Bounce on the world’s largest underground trampoline, get to the heart of Welsh culture at the Royal Welsh Show or explore a working medieval village at Cardiff Castle’s Grand Medieval Mêlée. September will also see Wales take centre stage as it plays host to the largest gathering of international leaders ever to take place in Britain at the NATO Summit 2014.

World’s largest underground trampoline opens in Welsh slate mine

The world’s largest underground trampoline has opened in an enormous cavern, twice the size of St Paul’s Cathedral, at an historic disused Welsh slate mine. Bounce Below, designed by the owners of outdoor pursuits centre Zip World, is the world’s first subterranean playground of its kind. The three giant trampolines, with three metre net walls, are each linked by an 18 metre long slide and are reached by an old mining train. The one hour activity will see visitors dress in cotton overalls and helmets before jumping on the train to travel inside the mountain. A technicoloured light show will illuminate the cavern as guests bounce through the mine.

New Wickedly Welsh Chocolate Factory opens with Golden Ticket competition

Visitors to the newly opened Wickedly Welsh Chocolate Factory, close to Haverfordwest in Pembrokeshire, can and enjoy some tasty treats and learn about the story of chocolate. A 50 minute demonstration enables visitors to view the factory at work as well as sample liquid chocolate before it gets made into the final product. The factory is also home to a Chocolate Shot Café and a Chocolate Delicatessen. Café visitors can create their own chocolate pizzas, lollies and a hot chocolate flavour. This summer, the Wickedly Welsh Chocolate Factory is partnering with Oakwood Theme Park to offer a selection of thrill-seeking chocoholics the opportunity to win a magical Golden Ticket which will provide VIP entry to both attractions. This Wonka-inspired prize will be hidden inside orange and popping candy chocolate bars, which will be available at selected retail stores as well as on site at both attractions.

New behind the scenes Food Adventure in the Welsh countryside

New Welsh food business Food Adventure is offering an exclusive insight into Welsh food and drink production. Visitors can take part in behind the scenes food tours and visit vineyards, farms, restaurants and hotels across South Wales. Guests will have the chance to meet independent, local food and drink producers, farmers and chefs to find out more about their companies and sample their produce on either a half or full day tour. Activities include foraging in the Welsh countryside, taking part in food demonstrations with renowned chefs and exploring farms to learn how exceptional meat and vegetables are reared and grown. Bespoke tours are also available for special events.

Luxury Twr Y Felin Hotel to re-open in West Wales

Twr Y Felin Hotel in St Davids will reopen in 2015 as a luxury boutique property in West Wales. The hotel will offer 20 ensuite bedrooms, a restaurant, bar and conference and event facilities. The hotel, converted from a 200 year old windmill, is situated in the heart of the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park. Wildlife enthusiasts can discover rare habitats and species, history buffs can explore prehistoric tombs and Iron Age Hill Forts and beach enthusiasts can relax on Wales’ south western shore. This luxury hideaway hotel, together with its sister properties at Roch Castle Hotel and Penrhiw Priory, is set to become one of the most sought after retreats in the UK.

Official opening of Porthcawl's new marina doubles the number of berths

A new £3.2 million marina has been opened at Porthcawl in South Wales, doubling the number of berths on the waterfront. The brand new marina includes a new harbour gate and an extension to its eastern breakwater and pontoon moorings for 70 leisure, commercial and visiting craft. Advance moorings have already been booked for visitors planning to visit Porthcawl for the Senior Open golf tournament and the annual Elvis Festival. The regeneration of the waterfront is a key element in the future development of Porthcawl as a premier seaside resort and is the subject of a long-term initiative known as the 7 Bays Project.

Zero carbon Snowdonia guesthouse wins top UK eco award

A small eco guesthouse in Snowdonia has beaten renowned hotels to celebrate victory at the prestigious UK Considerate Hotelier Awards. After winning the Considerate Small Accommodation Provider of the Year Award 2014, Bryn Elltyd Eco Guesthouse at Tanygrisiau, near Blaenau Ffestiniog has followed up with the Considerate Green Team of the Year accolade. The three star, six bedroom guesthouse, which has had solar panels since 1983, is carbon neutral as all energy comes from renewable sources. The solar panels heat water, rain is harvested to flush toilets and to water the garden and there are also two commercial hydro plants within 200 meters. Wood has been harvested to make a dining table, coffee tables, window sills, flower beds, as well as being used for structural timber and seasoned firewood.

NATO Summit comes to Wales

This September, Wales will host the largest gathering of international leaders ever to take place in Britain at the NATO summit 2014. President Obama, Chancellor Merkel and President Hollande are expected to attend along with leaders and senior ministers from around 60 other countries. As one of the UK’s finest international conference venues, The Celtic Manor Resort will be a fitting host for The NATO Summit. A newsletter providing news and information is available for all those interested in finding out more about Wales and the NATO Summit on a regular basis. Sign-up here: About Wales.

All images are credited to © Crown copyright (2014) Visit Wales


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