Hay on Wye is a smallmarket town in Powys,Wales, just across the border with Hereford, England. It is best known for itslarge number of second-hand and specialist bookshops, and since 1988 has hostedthe famous Hay Festival of Literature and Arts, which takes place over 10 daysin May and June.
The town sits on the River Wye, and on the edge of theBreconBeacons. The town has a delightfully relaxed, old world charm, butalso makes a very convenient base from which to explore the nature, wildlifeand leisure activities of the countryside around it.
Shopping in Hay on Wyeb>Hay on Wye is famous for itsbookshops. While the number of bookshops in Hay onWye has declined in recent years, the town still boasts aroundtwo dozen shops specialising in particular fields or offering more generalstock. All the shops in Hay on Wye areindependent, and there is a strong opposition towards chain stores among thetown’s residents. As well as bookshops, the town has a number of other shops,including art galleries, antique shops, craft shops, clothes boutiques, musicshops, food shops and charity shops.
Outdoor Pursuits in Hay on WyeLocated at the edge of the spectacularBrecon Beacons National Park, Hay onWye offers a huge selection of leisure activities for lovers ofthe great outdoors. Canoeing on the River Wye is especially popular, but youcan also enjoy horse riding, cycling, mountain biking, hiking, rock climbing,caving, paragliding, abseiling, fishing, shooting, archery, paintballing, golfand more in this beautiful landscape.
Food and Drink in Hay on WyeMuch of the food scene in Hay onWye is centred on the many town pubs, some hundreds of yearsold, which offer relaxed dining with menus based on fresh local produce, and aselection of locally brewed beers. A traditional market is held on Thursdays,where you can buy local cheeses, meat and fish, fresh vegetables, locally bakedbread and cakes, plants and flowers, and even antiques, clothes and householdgoods.
The area around Hay onWye also has much to offer the discerning food lover, with anumber of excellent pubs, restaurants and cafes a short journey out of town,including several with Michelin stars.
Attractions in Hay on Wye The town is dominated by its ruined castle, datingback to Norman times but destroyed and rebuilt several times since then. Thecastle grounds are home to an unstaffed honesty bookshop, where you areencouraged to pay for your selections by posting money into a collectionbox.
In addition, the well-preserved motte of another,earlier Norman castle can still be seen close to St. Mary’s Church.
Visit Hay on WyeNaturally, avid readers should feel right at home inthis town of books, but those seeking more physical pursuits are just as wellcatered for, with a vast range of outdoor activities available, and abreathtaking landscape to explore.