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Welsh history comes alive at Cadw sites this half term

20 May 2024 6 minute read
Castell Coch. Image: Cadw

Cadw has revealed its exciting lineup of events across Wales for May half term, offering a range of activities for families at Wales’ mightiest castles, historic houses and industrial sites.

Whether you’re craving adventure, eager to uncover history or simply seeking quality time with your loved ones, Cadw’s events are suitable for all.

A selection of the most unique events is below; for a full list of Cadw events over the half term holiday and admission information, visit Cadw’s website.

Castell Coch. Image: Cadw

May Bank Holiday Madness at Castell Coch

Embark on an enchanting adventure this bank holiday weekend by completing the fairy trail at Castell Coch.

Wander through the wooded pathways and discover hidden wonders around every corner.

Children can visit the face painting station and craft their own crown and wand to complete the magical experience at Wales’ very own fairytale castle.

Saturday 25, Sunday 26 and Monday 27 May 11:00– 15:00

Raglan Castle. Image: Cadw

Medieval Murder Mystery at Raglan Castle

Step back to 1487 at Raglan Castle for a thrilling Medieval Murder Mystery event. Amidst Henry VII’s reign, treachery looms, and it’s up to visitors to unravel the truth.

Arms and armour demonstrations, interactive activities and other historical displays are also available throughout the day for visitors to enjoy.

Sunday 26 & Monday 27 May 11:00 – 15:30

Plasmawr in Conwy and the steps to the tower room where legend suggests a pregnant mother and her child fell to their deaths in the 1600s.

The Wise Woman and the Surgeon at Plas Mawr

Explore the immersive world of Tudor medicine and surgery at Plas Mawr, Britain’s finest surviving townhouse of the golden Elizabethan age.

Engage your senses as you delve into medicinal herbs and remedies, feeling their textures and inhaling their scents.

Visitors will also have the chance to try replica surgical instruments and learn about the role of surgeons in the Tudor era.

Sunday 26 and Monday 27 May 10:00 – 16:00


Plantagenets at Castell Harlech

Ever witnessed a knight at work? Marvel at the excitement of a thrilling knight’s tournament at Castell Harlech featuring epic clashes of sword and shield and the mastery of horseback warfare.

The event will also include archery showcases, the elegance of graceful dances, and the enchanting melodies of live music, so visitors can fully immerse themselves in the culture and living history of the period.

Saturday 25, Sunday 26 and Monday 27 May 11:00 – 16:00

Blaenafon Ironworks. Photo Mark Mansfield

World War 1 Blaenafon Ironworks

Surround yourself in the sights, sounds and stories of The Great War at Blaenafon Ironworks.

Explore living history up close – with authentic weaponry displays, blacksmith demonstrations and a military hospital to step back into the wartime period.

This unique event offers visitors a glimpse into one of the most significant times in human history.

Saturday 1 and Sunday 2 June 11:00 – 16:00

Medieval Festival Beaumaris Castle

Experience the very essence of medieval history as Beaumaris Castle rewinds time to give visitors a glimpse into life as knights, lords, ladies and archers.

Attend knight school, drill training and jester performances but don’t miss the finale: an epic battle between two rival forces – who might even need some extra recruits…

Saturday 25, Sunday 2  and Monday 27 May 10:00 – 17:00

St Davids Bishop’s Palace. Image: Cadw

Minstrel Tom and the Wise Woman at St Davids Bishops Palace

Be serenaded by enchanting medieval melodies of Minstrel Tom this half term as you explore the wonder of St Davids Bishop’s Palace.

Journey through time with the Wise Woman as you learn about the fascinating uses of herbs throughout the ages, from ancient remedies to culinary delights.

Wednesday 29 & Thursday 30 May 10:00 – 16.30

Caerphilly Castle. Picture by Rob the moment (CC BY 2.0)

A Medieval May time at Caerphilly Castle

Journey into the heart of medieval history at Caerphilly Castle with crafts, costumed performances about knights and the castle, and the charming castle trail.

This weekend guarantees an unforgettable adventure for the whole family, so don’t miss the opportunity to explore Wales’ mightiest medieval fortress across the bank holiday weekend.

Saturday 25, Sunday 26 and Monday 27 May 11:00 – 15:00

An Aerial view of Caerleon Roman amphitheatre. Photo by CADW is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.

Under the Sea – Caerleon Roman Fortress and Baths

Dive into the depths of history and unravel the underwater secrets hidden at Caerleon Roman Fortress and Baths.

Keep your senses sharp and your eyes peeled, for hidden amidst the ancient baths lie underwater mosaics waiting to be discovered.

Every day from Saturday 25 May to Sunday 2 June 10:00 – 16:00

Medieval Musical Moments at Tretower Court and Castle

Experience the magic of the 15th century brought to life through music this bank holiday weekend at Tretower Court and Castle.

Enjoy these two historical buildings in one as the melodies of the musical duo Pease Pottage echo through the ancient walls and whisk you away to Wales’ past.

Saturday 25, Sunday 26 and Monday 27 May 10:30 – 16:30

Criccieth castle. Picture by Mark Bradley

Tales of Wales at Castell Cricieth & Castell Rhuddlan

Listen to the tales and legends of old Wales at both Castell Cricieth and Castell Rhuddlan on bank holiday Monday, two castles steeped in history.

Hear of the giants, maidens, wizards and dragons that predate the castles themselves through storytelling and song.

Monday 27 May at various times between 10:30 – 15:30

Half Term Fun at Denbigh Castle

Travel to this formidable 13th century fortress to explore its towering ramparts  and breathtaking views across the countryside.

This half term, gather friends and family to Denbigh Castle and enjoy an adventure-filled day of games on the castle’s lush green lawns and creativity at the craft table.

Saturday 25 May 10:00 – 16:00

Laugharne Castle. Photo Nation.Cymru

Birds of Prey at Laugharne Castle

Witness the majestic world of birds of prey at Laugharne Castle this half term.

From graceful falcons to powerful eagles, their unique beauty is sure to captivate every visitor.

With spectacular flying displays at 12pm and 3pm, watch as these birds soar through the sky with breathtaking agility and grace around this mighty medieval castle, Tudor mansion and poet’s hideout.

Saturday 25 & Sunday 26 May 11:00 – 16:00

Further events

Cadw’s events are filled with fun, history and valuable experiences and a full list can be found here.

Cadw memberships offer free event entry and unlimited access to over 130 historic places across Wales all year round, offering a unique way to explore Wales’ rich heritage.

To help you discover new adventures for your children and their friends, all adult Cadw memberships now include free entry for children.

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26 days ago

Welsh history? Well, according to Cadw there is no Welsh history, isn’t it all Roman, Saxon, Norman etc? Cadw doesn’t represent Wales at all, and they often hold grudges against independent Historians who show an evidence that runs contrary to what they say about these sites.

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