Watch: TikTok star stunned by Welsh speaking town in Argentina
A TikTok star travelling around South America was stunned when she stumbled across a small slice of Wales in the middle of Argentina.
TikTok creators Emmy and Simon known to their followers as ‘The Weird Couple’ were on a trip of a lifetime when they discovered the beautiful Welsh speaking town of Gaiman in Patagonia.
@thatweirdcouplee We’re in the Welsh settlement of Gaiman in Patagonia, the Welsh settled here in the 1800s – the Argentinas couldn’t understand why they wanted to settle and not to conque and take over, but they did just want a safe place to continue the language and traditions ! #welsh #wales #welshlanguage #gaiman @ffionangell ♬ original sound – Thatweirdcouplee – Emmy & Si
The remote Welsh settlement of Y Wladfa (The Colony) first saw the arrival of Welsh immigrants in 1865 and today the legacy lives on in the pretty Welsh-Argentine town where the community speak a variety of the Welsh language known as Cymraeg y Wladfa.
During the mid 19th century Welsh speakers in Wales were routinely persecuted and the language was being actively discouraged, especially in schools with the ‘Welsh Not’ being hung about the necks of Welsh speaking students as a punishment for uttering the language.
In 1862, land was offered by an Argentinian minster to Lewis Jones from Caernarfon who had travelled to Patagonia with the Welsh politician, Sir Love Parry-Jones. Shortly afterwards, a leaflet was sent back home describing a beautiful land not so different from Wales.
Around 150 Welsh people, many from the Rhondda Valley, set sail from Liverpool on an 8000 mile journey in the hope the new land that awaited them would be safe and welcoming.
In the viral TikTok video, Emmy showed her followers around Gaiman where to this day a Welsh community still happily lives and school children are taught Welsh to ensure the language is preserved.
Pretty Welsh tea houses can still be found and there’s even a delicious Patagonian version of Bara Brith.
The town is littered with Welsh flags and Emmy wandered around with her partner in the sunshine marvelling at the Welsh language signage dotted about.
The social media influencers ended their visit with a spot of Welsh afternoon tea at a quaint cafe named Ty Gwyn.
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