We’re incredibly lucky in South Wales to have so many beautiful places on our doorstep that can be visited free of charge. We have a huge number of green parks, rocky and sandy beaches and coastline, mountains, woodlands, museums, historical buildings and lots more that won’t cost you a penny for entry.
As you’ll know if you’ve read Cardiff Mummy Says previously, I’m passionate about promoting inexpensive family days out, both local and further a field, in the hope that it will inspire other families to explore places they have never been to before.
I’ve written about lots of these free days out previously on Cardiff Mummy Says – just search the Cardiff section of the blog for ideas. In fact one of my most popular blog posts ever is this one on 67 free days out in South Wales first published in July 2016.
As a family, we were discussing all the places we’d like to visit this year and it got me thinking. Could we set ourselves a challenge to see if we can visit 52 free family-friendly attractions in South Wales in 2019?
That’s one a week – although I know some weeks, especially in the school holidays and warmer months, we’ll visit more than that and some weeks we won’t visit any.
We’ll document it all here on Cardiff Mummy Says and on the Cardiff Mummy Says Instagram feed.
The rules are simple.
- The attractions must be either in Cardiff or within easy reach. This means it must be possible to get there and back in a day with a reasonable amount of travel (so no more than 90 minutes each way but ideally under 60). Even better if the places are easily accessible by public transport.
- Our visits have to be proper and worthwhile trips where we explore the place fully rather than a quick drive by.
- The place must be free to visit for adults and children or in exceptional circumstances incur a very minimal cost (an example here would be Cardiff Castle where people who work or live in Cardiff can buy a Castle Key pass for an admin fee of £6 which gives free entry for three years).
- Reasonable parking charges are acceptable.
- We mustn’t spend a fortune on food and drink while there because that defeats the purpose of it being a free day out.
- It doesn’t matter if we have visited the place prior to 2019 but only one visit per each place in 2019 will count towards the total.
- Places must be permanent attractions rather than one-off events.
- At least a quarter (13) of the 52 are to be places we as a family have never visited before.
- As Cardiff Daddy works full-time and I’m at home with the children during the school holidays he probably won’t be present for all 52 trips but we’ll make sure he’s there for as many as possible.
- Each of the 52 will be documented on Cardiff Mummy Says blog and Instagram account.
- Trips will be tagged on Instagram with the hashtag #52SouthWalesFamilyTrips2019 – feel free to join in.
A few new places we have on our list so far are to walk the Sugar Loaf Mountain near Abergavenny, to see the sand dunes of MerthyrMawr near Bridgend, and to visit Cyfartha Castle in Merthyr. I’m sure some of our old favourites will make an appearance in the challenge such as Bute Park in Cardiff, the various National Museums of Wales, and plenty of our wonderful local beaches.
I’m looking forward to seeing where our challenge take us this year and what adventures we have in store.
I’d love to hear your suggestions of the best free place to visit in and around Cardiff. Perhaps as a family you’d also like to set yourselves a similar challenge. If 52 seems too many, then what about a more manageable 12, one a month?
Let me know how you get on in the comments below, on the Cardiff Mummy Says Facebook page or you can tweet me on @cardiffmummy Don’t forget to follow Cardiff Mummy Says on Instagram where I share more photos and videos of our days out.