Merthyr lying in the south of Wales is in one of the most beautiful and stunning regions in the country. With a hire car it is possible to see not only this interesting town but also to tour the wondrous Brecon Beacons National Park. The town of Merthyr has a rich and illustrious history, particularly in manufacturing during the industrial revolution. This is because Merthyr Tydfil was perfectly placed to take advantage of the wealth of nearby coal mines and iron ore deposits; as such the town was labelled the iron capital of the world during the industrial revolution, making many of the cannon present on British naval warships. This manufacturing industry declined however and today employment in Merthyr Tydfil relies on the service industries rather than industrial manufacturing.
As previously stated the Brecon Beacons National Park is only a short drive with your hire car from Merthyr Tydfil. This region, regarded by many to be the most beautiful in Wales is certainly worth visiting when in the area. With large numbers of small market towns, castles and more open space than it is possible to shake a stick at, it is a region literally filled with fun and entertainment. The simple pleasure so of using your hire car to tour the rolling hills and deep valleys is a sublime experience that in short, is an essential component of any trip to the region. Children will also be entertained in the Brecon Beacons as there are plenty of attractions specifically focussed towards younger visitors with adventure playgrounds and activities to keep them occupied while mum and dad relax.
A nearby country estate is Cyfarthfa Castle, built from profits earned during the industrial revolution, it was constructed in 1825 and sits in one hundred and sixty acres of superbly manicured gardens and parkland. Today the castle is the site of a museum detailing elements of Welsh history from the past three thousand years. Within the castle are art collections that include pottery and porcelain from heralded designers Wedgwood. Naturally the museum plays host to an exhibition showing the rise of this small town to one of the capitals of the industrial revolution. There is information on Richard Trecithick's Penydarren Locomotive that was in fact the first train to pull a load along rails. The museum also gives visitors the chance to see the roots of the labour movement and information pertaining to the country's first labour member of parliament. Thankfully the castle is easily reachable with the use of car hire services from Merthyr.
As with much of this region of Wales a strong pride is felt for the industrial heritage and hard work of their mining ancestors. This is why when in Merthyr Tydfil and the surrounding region using a hire car to visit one of the many old collieries is highly advisable. One of these collieries is in Blaenavon; the site has actually been added to the UNESCO World Heritage Site list since 2000. The reason this site is so important to the history of Wales and the world more generally is because it showcases the pre-eminence of the region in the sphere of iron production during the industrial revolution. Nearby is the big pit museum that allows visitors to head down into the ground while Blaenavon Ironworks gives an idea of how the ore was worked until it became a suitable material for construction. Whatever you do around Merthyr it is hard to get away from the rich industrial heritage.
A visit to Merthyr can be fascinating for all the family. While some will love the open space, rugged beauty and sublimely tranquil Brecon Beacons National Park others will enjoy finding out about the regions amazing industrial heritage and rise to prominence as one of the major manufacturing areas throughout the industrial revolution. Whatever your reasons for visiting Merthyr, consider a hire car the perfect accompaniment allowing you to travel at your own pace and in comfort.
Travel expert Thomas Pretty looks at how car hire Merthyr Tydfil services are great way to see the town and surrounding area.