Llangollen, 140 mi/225 km north of Cardiff, is nestled in a wooded vale of the same name. Adding to the rustic charm of this country town is a revived steam railway.

Each July, the Llangollen hosts an international music and cultural festival, or eisteddfod. But year-round you can see the haunting ruins of the 13th-century Abbey of Valle Crucis, a few miles/kilometers north, or the 700-year-old Chirk Castle, 6 mi/10 km to the east, on the border with England.

While in the area, make a point to visit Erddig, a country house just south of Wrexham, where things have been left largely unchanged for more than two centuries.

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