Breathtaking – can only describe the scenery and wildlife as some of the most beautiful in the whole of Wales. To see bluebells not under trees is awesome. We loved every minute. Sleeping in the hostel is fine and more luxurious than anticipated. Taking all food and drink for the 24 hours was perfectly manageable too. We did have to book the accommodation last year as it is so popular and there is only room in the hostel for 14 overnighters.
Skomer is accessible from the little harbour at Martin’s Haven and for those wanting a day trip boats sail (weather permitting) just three times a day. Contact Dale-sailing for more details. You have to be prepared to queue in the popular weeks ie Whitsun half term.
Looking towards St Brides Bay and Solva from the island. We also saw porpoises from the island and from the ferry crossing. And of course we saw the worlds largest population of Manx Shearwater returning around half eleven at night from their days feeding in the Irish Sea. What a fabulous noise they made!!
The little boat arrived to pick us up the next morning and take us safely back to the mainland – the crossing to Skomer is quite short and only takes about 15 minutes. Experienced crewmen know the seas well and don’t take risks if forecasts are poor. so crossings can be cancelled at short notice.
We think you will love Skomer 2015 too! Come and stay at Old Oak Barn in June and have a look for yourselves. We currently have two short breaks available around June 6th and June 21st. Phone on 01994230716 for more details.
You can see more pics of puffins in our other blogs!
Old Oak Barn near Carmarthen has 40 acres of woodlands to roam – with lots of tracks and paths which we maintain so that you can wander at leisure.
Towards the middle end of April the bluebells will begin to flower and depending on the weather they will put on an amazing show for up to a month.
In recent year small patches have been clearfelled in the woods as part of our woodland management programme – all felling is undertaken under license. Replanting over the past few years has been very successful and now the woods provide a great variety of habitats for wildlife and birds. We have two small areas which are left undisturbed completely. The small log cabin which has been in the woods for over 25 years is much loved and nearby we have two swings and a good picnic area where you can have BBQs and a real camp fire. We look forward to the holiday season of 2015 when visitors will be able once again to enjoy this semi natural ancient woodland as it is classified. We are confident the bluebells will put on another glorious show!
Click here – Bluebell Woods to see where else you can visit woods throughout the UK which have bluebells.
Top things to do in Carmarthen
Besides the lovely beaches dotted around the coastline from Pembrey to Amroth including the famous sands of Pendine we can recommend some great places to visit while staying at Old Oak Barn
Check out this Trip Advisor link which lists the following as being worth a visit!
And we are only a few miles from Pembrokeshire which has so many beautiful beaches, spectacular scenery over the Preseli Hills and lots of popular visitor attractions for children of all ages many of which are open all year round. We know the area well and are on hand to help you plan the most of your holiday in Wales.
Free entry to Gardens of Wales in January
This January the National Gardens of Wales are offering free entry during the week and charging only £2 at weekends. Why not visit this month to take advantage of this annual offer. There may not be an abundance of flowers as in the photo above but there is still a lot to see! In addition to free entry during the week there are 3 special weekends organised. The Gardens are only 20 minutes or so from Old Oak Barn and our visitors always rate them highly.
Saturday & Sunday January 10-11 – Antiques Weekend
Saturday & Sunday January 17-18 – Woodcraft Weekend
Saturday January 31: Snowdrop Day – talks and walks and buy-your-own snowdrop collection
February Events at The Gardens of Wales
Saturday February 14-Sunday February 22 – Going Flat Out for Pancakes at half-term
Cookery, pancake races plus lots more full-on half-term fun and games.
Sunday February 22 – Seed Swap Sunday
Bring along some seeds and swap them with fellow growers and take part in lots of talks and activities around the subject of ‘growing your own’.
Friday February 27 – Star Party
Come and join the Swansea Astronomical Society in the stunning surrounds of Lord Foster’s Great Glasshouse for an evening of star-gazing. The SAS’s stellar experts will be giving talks, too, and helping you with any difficulties you are having with your telescopes at a series of special one-on-one clinics. 6pm-9pm.
Christmas shopping in Llandeilo is not to be missed! But this pretty market town is worth a visit all year round and has lots of great little independent shops to browse. There is also the Antiques Centre at the far end of town and Dynevor is only 5 minutes from the main street too. There are lots of lovely cafes and restaurants with The Cawdor and The Angel being worthy of a visit for a special treat!
We visited last week and were struck by the beautiful window displays.
If staying at Old Oak barn you can drive to this popular market town in about 30 minutes.
These three videos show some great local walks near Old Oak Barn in Carmarthenshire. We have ordnance survey maps to borrow and lots of good ideas of where to go to get off the beaten track.
The first is around Laugharne
The second around Stackpole in Pembrokeshire
The third from Wisemans Bridge to Saundersfoot and beyond.
So put your walking boots on and get walking! You can always pop into Carmarthen to the local Cotswold outdoor shop to buy new boots! It is a great stockist of everything you may need if you too like the Big Outdoors.
The Gardens of Wales.
Situated only a short drive from Carmarthen and only 25 minutes from Old Oak Barn are the fabulous Gardens of Wales. We have vouchers which will enable one adult to get in free along with one fee paying adult. Well worth a visit at any time of the year. The photos below were all taken in August 2014.
Open every day except December 24 and 25 between 10 – 6 April – September and between 10 – 4 October – March there is always something going on at The Gardens. It rarely gets crowded and is a great day out for all ages.
The National Botanic Garden of Wales has declared Friday September 12, 2014, to be “Meet the Neighbours day”, which means free entry for anyone able to prove they live in the SA31 postcode area. This special ‘Postcode Day’ initiative includes key talks by Garden staff and behind-the-scenes tours.
Recent News September 2014
The first stage of a £6.7 million plan to restore historic Regency landscape at the National Botanic Garden of Wales has been given the green light.
What will be the biggest project in the Garden’s history aims to uncover the origins of Middleton Hall – the 568-acre estate that the Garden now occupies and to tell the story of more than 250 years of East India Company influence that shaped the landscape of this part of Wales.
It was announced in September) that the Garden has received initial support from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) with a pledge of more than £300,000 to develop its plans for the Regency Restoration project.
The scheme includes major archaeological work which will reveal the secrets of the estate from the time of Shakespeare and before, and see the restoration of the later Regency landscape that was one of the finest water parks in Britain. When completed, the Garden will once more feature the necklace of seven lakes, cascades, falls and weirs created more than 200 years ago and again boast the Regency planting scheme that formed the heart of its parkland.
Folly Farm – voted best in the west by our visitors!
Below we have 6 of our favourite animals found at this major Pembrokeshire visitor attraction! Photos were taken by a visitor from Bristol Jeff Gendall who stays with his family on a regular basis either at Old Oak Barn or at Puffin House.
This is a must for visitors to this part of West Wales. Last summer there was a great offer on which allowed you free entry for a second time within the same week and several of our visitors did infact end up going twice! Approx 30 minutes from Old Oak Barn near St Clears and also a similar distance from Puffin House in Broadhaven. The inside attractions including vintage fun fair rides mean that whatever the weather you and your family can enjoy a brilliant day out.
Photos taken recently!
They were taken in October 2013 half term when many children visiting this part of Wales will have also paid Folly Farm a visit!
1. Meerkats Rule at Folly Farm!
3. Two fat porcupines!
Recommended tourist attractions in Carmarthenshire
Oakwood Theme Park
Stay at Old Oak Barn near St Clears or Puffin House in Broad Haven while you go to Oakwood – always a great day out in Wales!
Sunday 27th October
Thursday 31st October
The Ghost of Skull Rock Show with Live Actors, Laser Show and more!
Spooky 3D LIVE!
Oakwood Theme Park is open throughout the year although limited in winter.