Wales is famous for being a land of natural beauty, brimming with historical sites and stunning landscapes, and the area in and around Newport is no exception. Sitting on the banks of the River Usk, Newport and the surrounding areas offer a unique blend of urban cosmopolitanism, magnificent countryside and ancient ruins. From rolling hills and lush valleys to pristine coastlines, there are countless captivating and scenic spots to discover in this sometimes-overlooked corner of Wales. Here, we take you on a journey through some of the most picturesque areas to visit in and around Newport.
The Usk Valley
The Usk Valley is a true gem for nature lovers and walkers alike. Dotted with medieval castles and chocolate box villages, the Usk Valley follows the River Usk as it weaves its way through the area’s spectacular scenery.
Walkers flock to the Valley to meander through the rolling countryside and along country lanes, taking pitstops in the numerous rural pubs scattered throughout the Valley and marvelling at the impressive mountain views.
The Usk Valley is particularly lovely in Spring, when the hillsides are covered in vibrant wildflowers, and during Autumn, when the foliage morphs into a mesmerising tapestry of rich reds, oranges and yellows.
Tredegar House and Park
Tredegar House is a grand 17th-century mansion set within 90 acres of beautiful parkland just a short drive from Newport City Centre. Visitors can immerse themselves in the history of the house, from the Great Kitchen with its gigantic cauldron, to the vintage 1930s bedrooms, before strolling through the magnificent gardens and enjoying a picnic by the lake. Now a National Trust site, the house is a wonderful day out for all the family.
Newport Wetlands Reserve
Newport Wetlands Reserve is a must-visit attraction for bird enthusiasts and anyone in search of a peaceful retreat into nature. Noted as one of the top sites in Wales for observing bird life, the nature reserve is home to an abundance of birds, including falcons, widgeon and lapling, along with other wildlife, such as badgers and moles. With a variety of walking routes to explore as well as viewing platforms, a children’s play area, a café and a shop, visitors can while away a pleasant few hours at this beautiful wildlife haven.
Five miles Northeast of Newport sits the charming historic town of Caerleon, where a Roman Fortress and Baths provide a fascinating glimpse into the lives of the 5,000 Roman soldiers who once called the town home. Visitors can take in the remains of the enormous open air swimming pool, peek into the cramped barracks where the men slept and marvel at the Roman amphitheatre, the most complete in Europe, with the performers’ entrance and shrine intact. After a few hours of historical exploration, you can refuel at one of the many traditional pubs, cafes and tea rooms before mooching around the pretty town.
The beautiful Caerphilly Mountain can be reached in under half an hour by car from Newport. A regular feature on the Tour de Britain cycle race route and famed for its stunning walks, the mountain offers spectacular views over Caerphilly and Cardiff Bay. The summit is 271 metres above sea level and can be reached by path or car.
Visitors to Newport don’t need to travel far from the city centre to immerse themselves in the treasure trove of picturesque landscapes and fascinating historical sites that surround Wales’ third largest city. From lush valleys and rolling countryside to fascinating historical sites and quaint villages, it’s all there, waiting to be discovered and offering the perfect antidote to the hustle and bustle of urban life.