Bridgend City Guide

Conveniently located halfway between Cardiff and Swansea, and a stone’s throw from the Brecon Beacons and the Gower Peninsula, Bridgend is a thriving market town. Settled since pre-Roman times, it is steeped in history. From its Norman castles, beautiful beaches and areas of outstanding natural beauty, to its bustling shopping district, fine restaurants and excellent sporting facilities, there is truly something for everyone in Bridgend.

Bridgend sits on the River Ogmore, and is named after the old bridge that crossed it. In 2009 a riverside walkway was opened along the river.

Sport in Bridgend

Bridgend has a long history of rugby and football, with the Bridgend Ravens rugby union team dating back to 1878. For those who enjoy the great outdoors, Bridgend has an abundance of facilities: cycling, surfing, mountain biking, hiking, golf, tennis and swimming are all well catered for.

Shopping in Bridgend

Bridgend town centre offers a diverse range of independent shops, from traditional butchers to bespoke jewellers. The bustling indoor market is a great place to buy food and local artisan produce, or simply to put your feet up and have a coffee whilst watching the world go by. Just a short drive out of the centre of town you will find plenty of retail parks offering discount designer clothes and much more.

Eating and Drinking in Bridgend

From traditional Welsh fare to international cuisine, Bridgend’s wide range of cafes, restaurants and pubs will have something to satisfy the most demanding food lover.

Things to See and Do in Bridgend

Bridgend boasts three Norman castles which once formed a defensive triangle protecting the area. The ruins of Newcastle Castle stand on Newcastle Hill, overlooking the town centre. A second ruin, Coity Castle, is in Coity Higher to the northwest. To the south lies the third ruin, Ogmore Castle, in the nearby seaside village of Ogmore-by-Sea.

For nature lovers, the Gower Peninsula was declared the first Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in the UK in 1956 and can be reached by train, bus or car. The Brecon Beacons National Park is also a short drive away, and on summer Sundays and Bank Holidays the National Park operates a Beacons Bus service from Bridgend.

How about a day at the beach? Nearby Sker Bay, Pink Bay, Rest Bay and Southerndown are hugely popular with surfers, and the local surfing academies offer training courses for beginners. If that all sounds a bit strenuous, why not relax on a secluded beach such as Tresilian Bay or Dunraven Bay? Or head down to Ogmore-by-Sea and get onto the Glamorgan Coastal Path for some excellent walking.

Bryngarw Country Park is the largest in the region and offers a variety of natural habitats as well as excellent amenities for visitors. The beautiful Oriental Garden is definitely worth a visit.

Nearby Kenfig Pool is Glamorgan’s largest natural lake, and a national nature reserve, offering spectacular views and important wildlife habitats. Local legend has it that a lost city lies beneath the water.

Visit Bridgend

There’s everything you need in Bridgend for an enjoyable holiday, whether you want to keep busy with invigorating activities or just take it easy and enjoy the warmth of the relaxed Welsh welcome.

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