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Aberystwyth is located on the West coast of mid-Wales. It has a stunning and unique location, with Cardigan Bay to the west and the Cambrian mountains to the East. The temperature is normally good between May and September with good amounts of sunshine, however, since it’s a coastal town, it can be windy. There is also a fair chance of rain at any point during the year, however, this is normally pretty light during the summer months.
Accessing Aberystwyth is best done by car or train, however, be prepared for a 3-hour drive/train ride if traveling from England – there is no motorway and trains only run to the east. However, it is worth the journey when you discover how much of a hidden gem it is!
The residents of Aberystwyth are very friendly and always go above and beyond to make visitors feel welcome, and it is a very safe area with low crime rates. As a local, I can always take a walk through the town and bump into someone I know, and stop for a chat – one of the many reasons to love the town!
There are loads to do in Aberystwyth – I have lived here all my life and I’m still finding new things!
Aberystwyth Castle: situated overlooking the promenade and seaside, Aberystwyth castle offers a unique insight into the historical era of Aberystwyth. The castle is largely in ruins, but many people still like to visit and learn more about the history of the town. The castle grounds also offer a play park for kids and a good picnic area overlooking the sea.
National Library of Wales: Aberystwyth is home to the National Library of Wales, which is a legal deposit library and hosts a huge range of collections, including 250,000 hours of video, 6,000,000 books, and newspapers, and 950,000 photographs. The National Library also offers stunning views across Aberystwyth and surrounding areas.
Constitution hill cliff railway: Aberystwyth boasts the longest electric cliff railway in Great Britain, which runs up Constitution Hill that is located at the North end of the promenade. Trains run regularly throughout the summer and visitors can enjoy the café and small selection of attractions when at the top. Constitution Hill can also be climbed, and although steep in places, it would take a moderately fit walker about 30 minutes to complete.
Pier: situated in the middle of the promenade is the Pier, which houses a range of indoor attractions, including amusements, restaurants, sports bars, and pool/snooker halls. There is also an outdoor seating area on the end of the pier, where people can sit to eat and drink whilst taking in the panoramic views of the bay.
Promenade: Aberystwyth’s promenade is about 1 mile long, and is wide, which means that during peak season it hosts a range of outdoor café’s and other attractions. The traditional walk from one end to the other and ‘kicking the bar’ is also a must for any visitors!
Aberystwyth University: Aberystwyth is home to a large university, which is home to 1000’s students during the academic year. The University also offers a fitness center which can be accessed by locals and visitors, however, if intending to use this service it would be worthwhile enquiring in advance. The appeal of Aberystwyth is so strong that many students who study here end up staying.
Arts Centre: Aberystwyth has a medium-sized arts center, which offers a good range of events and activities. There are regular comedians performing and often tribute bands, which give an excellent night out! There is also a cinema and café and visitors are welcome to also go and view the different art galleries.
Shops/pubs/restaurants : You won’t find many chain shops or restaurants in Aberystwyth, which is something that gives it its character – when visiting Aberystwyth visitors must take advantage of sampling the local restaurants for a unique dining experience. As it’s a student town it also has a large range of pubs and a few nightclubs so have a great selection if you fancy a night out! There’s also a great range of independent shops on offer throughout the town.
Cinema: This is no Cineworld, but it’s so much better! When in Aberystwyth visitors must pay a visit to the local cinema to enjoy the unique experience!
Aberystwyth sunset: Aberystwyth is pretty famous for its sunsets! In my opinion, the best ones happen in September and they’re not to be missed if in the area!
Local walks: Aberystwyth and the surrounding areas offer a huge range of hiking and walking opportunities from climbing Pen Dinas, the old Roman hill fort, to following the Ystwyth and Rheidol river trails – most of these walks are family-friendly too, making it an excellent day out for everyone.
If you are looking to stay in Aberystwyth or the surrounding areas, you have a few options. There is a range of independent bed and breakfasts and hotels, and there is also a Premier Inn which only came to the town a few years ago. As well as this there are also multiple campsites located just outside of the town and in nearby villages. Aberystwyth is a highly popular tourist destination, especially through the summer months so if you are looking to visit, please make your preparations early to avoid disappointment!
Overall I would highly recommend Aberystwyth as a fantastic place to visit and for the size of the town, it offers a huge range of activities and places for people to visit and enjoy. It doesn’t offer some of the things that you’d find in larger towns and cities but it makes up for that with its unique character and stunning scenery. As the local saying goes “there’s nowhere better to be when the sun is out than FAberystwyth!”