Welcome to South Wales
Newport and The Valleys
Whether travelling by car or public transport, The Valleys in South Wales are easily accessible and easy to find. They are a short distance from Cardiff in the south and Brecon to the north.
No other part of Wales is as instantly recognizable as the Valleys or narrow gashes in the mountainous terrain to the north of Newport and Cardiff.
Each of the Valleys relied almost solely on coal mining which, although nearly ceased as an industry, has left its mark on the towns. Visitors will see row upon row of brightly painted terraced houses, tipped along the slopes at incredible angles, along with austere chapels, the occasional remaining pithead and the memorials to those who died underground.
This may not be traditional tourist country, but it’s one of the most interesting and distinctive corners of Wales, with a rich social history.
Some former mines have reopened as museums – Big Pit at Blaenafon and the Rhondda Heritage Park at Trehafod are the best – while other excellent civic museums include those at Pontypridd and Aberdare.