Discover the geography of the raging river that flows down the England / Wales border. Visit the great ruins, explore ancient art and get out there for our favorite activities in the Wye Valley.
With so many amazing things to do in the Wye Valley, it is amazing that it is not as famous as some of the world’s most outstanding natural beauty spots – the unique design offered in places that are considered to be especially beautiful, but not the ideal National Park.
(The Cotswolds come to mind.)
It is not unemployment. With a winding river that cuts through a loose line in the rolling green countryside, and harmlessly marks the border between England and Wales, there is a savage of things to do in the Wye Valley. Getting the best section of the day boat is one of them, going through the beautiful valley is another.
And we are not alone in appreciating this remarkable place. Throughout history, the kings and queens of the two noble independent states have long recognized the importance of the Wye district plan. The result is a dotted area with strange habitats, some of which have long contributed to destruction.
So, for a collection of historically interesting places, relaxing wildlife and bustling city markets, read on to discover our favorite activities in the Wye Valley.
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1 – CHECK CHEPSTOW AND ITS POWERFUL CASTLE
Chepstow Castle, located on the top of the Wye River on a large rocky outcrop, is the oldest surviving Roman site. Recognizing the strategic location between England and Wales, William the Conquer built a palace in 1067, the year following Norman’s invasion. Although its main gates are not the first, they are dated back to 1190, making them the oldest wooden doors in Europe.
The best point to see this castle is from across the Wye River. Like a raging river, the Wye may drop to about 50 feet [15 m], developing a magnificent rocky outcrop on which to build a palace. The city is also not to be missed. The 12th-century Roman entrance to St Mary’s church is like a magnificent street with its modern architecture and architecture.
2 – HIKE BETWEEN THE WYE VALLEY
The Wye Valley Hiking Trail begins at Chepstow Castle and continues for 136 miles along the river and surrounding hills. The trail cuts through valleys and ravines, desert plains and forests, and then rises to rugged and remote regions.
Some of the most beautiful places along the way are located on a small river crossing. The areas around Tintern, Symphs Yat and Hay on Wye are the most attractive for short-term hikes. Download maps here and experience as much or as little as you like.
3 – Navigate SECOND ABBEY PROGRAMS
Tintern Abbey was founded in 1131 by Cistercian monks who built a small wooden structure. The abbey was later enlarged by the rich and elite Marcher monks who lived under one of the Gothic monuments. The Tintern Abbey stood in glory on the banks of the Wye River until it was abandoned when the monasteries were completed.
Today, the abbey is one of the world’s most devastated ruins. Set an attractive section of the valley, the old walls containing the magnificent towers above the river. There are plenty of places to watch in the city, however, a climb to the Devil’s Pulpit (45 minutes) is worth the effort. It is a steep but steep path through dense jungle with twisted roots covered with moss and a sea of fern trees. The forest is finally separated to reveal the bird’s eye with the Tintern Abbey.
4 – CHECK OUT THE CHURCH USED BY THE FOREST
In the middle of the hill facing Tintern Abbey, very small – but like the wind – religious ruin lies in the rotten stages of decay. The result is a passionate thing to do in the Wye district.
St Mary’s Church was built in 1866 and after a relatively short life, it was destroyed by fire in 1977. What is left of the fire is now a catastrophic natural disaster. The roots go down and the branches attack the old stone walls. Extremely large cemeteries add an extra dimension to several unusual graves that fill the area.
The church has private owners and they are free to enter, however, ruin is considered unsafe and entry is a risk to yourself. Even if you don’t decide to navigate in, it’s more than just calling for an outside look. Unlike Tintern Abbey, no one will be there.
5 – ENJOY THE DRINK WITH A VIEW OF THE RIVER
With such an arrangement, Wye Valley offers many beautiful places along the river to enjoy beautiful paint or a relaxing lunch. Finding a fully-fledged bar is one of our favorite things to do in the Wye Valley. Here are some of the results of our research.
SARACEN’S HEAD, RETURNS YAT
Located under Symphs Rock on the river bank, The Saracen’s Head is a popular beverage stop. And it is easy to see why. Taking a spectacular view of a gorgeous rocky outcrop with a magnificent view of the river, it is one of the most iconic places on the river.
Boat INN, PENALT
With a beautiful tarmac garden leading to a waterfall that runs beneath the magnificent rockface, the Boat Inn is probably the most beautiful river restaurant in the Wye Valley. Technically in the village of Penalt, it is very interesting to reach it by footpath from Redbrook.
INN CAFÉ RIVER, GLASBURY
In a relaxed and relaxed setting overlooking the river, The River Inn Café is a great place to enjoy lunch after a long day rowing on the river. They also have a very cool repository for 14 groups or less if you want to hit the river early.
ANCHOR INN, INSIDE
The tables in the beer garden at The Anchor Inn are just a short distance from the river you will never really see. Never forget, what really attracts you here is the abbey standing unwillingly on the couch, looking down in contempt at the rude drinkers.
6 – COME TO THE RIVER ON THE WAY
The Wye River crosses the course through the valley, cutting through lush green areas as it crosses the border between Wales and England. It’s a village hit and seeing it in a kayak is one of the best things you can do in Wye Valley.
The best section for boating or kayaking on the upper Wye is the peaceful paddle between Glasbury and Hay on Wye. In the Wye below, the Ross on Wye to the Smonds Yat is the most spectacular. Nothing is more challenging than other small rapids that can bring a very small touch of adrenaline, otherwise you are facing a very relaxing day.
Down the river Smonds Yat gets a little tricky with fast rapids as you head towards Chepstow. This category is best for people with less experience under their paddles. All the details are in our kayaking in the River Wye article.
7 – INSERT COMMENTS FROM SYMONDS YAT ROCK
On a solid turn in the Wye River, Symphs Yat Rock is one of the most spectacular views in the Wye Valley. At the top of the valley, the river flows through the surrounding countryside with beautiful views far and wide. In theory, there are several marked roads around the country and down to the riverbank. If you are taking the road to the river, take a look at the house featured on the Netflix hit Sex Education.
The head of Saracen, right under Symphs Yat Rock, has one of the best places on the river where you can stop for a drink. Pull a table and relax in the beauty of the Wye valley. There is a hand boat that allows you to cross the Symptoms Yat East across the river, however, it is usually closed.
Symphs Yat Rock is a very popular place, all of which are well organized and well organized. Therefore, it can be completely obtained, especially in summer. A solid one-way road to a rock can be a frustrating bottle, so try visiting an off-peak.
8 – GO HISTORY IN GOODRICH CASTLE
Goodrich Castle was founded shortly after Norman’s invasion of England. The time of the halcyon, however, came in the 13th century when it was expanded into a luxurious royal residence. After the fall of the late 17th century, the castle withered into a spectacular ruin from there, built into a wide ridge of the Wye River.
There is enough castle of the palace to give a good idea of what it should look like at the height of its power, but with enough rotten enough to give it an unmistakable sense of atmosphere. A good sound guide takes room by room to describe the palace in an educational and fun way. The journey ends at the top with the best views of what would have been its proud rule.
After hours, the gates are always open for walking so, while you can’t get into the castle, you can walk around without anyone else.
9 – LIVING WORD AND PICTURE BY WYE BANKS
Enjoying a river on a wild swim trip is one of the best things you can do in the Wye valley. With such a beautiful river and beautiful rocky beaches, there are plenty of great outdoor recreation areas.
Some of the most beautiful places include the area below the Iron Bridge in Redbrook; skating on the Kerne Bridge; downstream of the river stop bridge in Sellack; under the bridge at Brewardine; and The Warren in Hay on Wye.
Relaxing dip with a nice picnic head in Sellack. From the village, it is a 10 minute walk over the church and across the farm to a beautiful place with a large sea of stones. Start the floating flow of the river at Kerne Bridge and put in a few strokes as it now dawns on the Lower Lrook, then backslide (3.5 miles).
There can be a lot of boats on the river, so you can swim before 9:30 or after 5:30 pm when most are gone.
10 – EXAMINE MEDIA VALUES FULLY
Mappa Mundi, located in Hereford Cathedral, is one of the world’s most important medieval treasures. Built on a single sheet of calf skin, the map is dated to about 1300 and shows the world as it was known at the time. With Jerusalem in the center, the map is a masterpiece of Christian history, geography, and destiny. It is interesting to see the real thing, but the English translation helps to communicate the understanding of the world that was captured in the 14th century.
While at Hereford Cathedral, raise your head in a chain-bound library – the world’s largest survivor. The books were fastened to the shelves with chains long enough to allow them to be read, but they were not stolen.
After visiting Mappa Mundi and handing out that you have not yet stolen the books, take a good coffee in the King Street Kitchen and lunch to take if you take a picnic on the river.
11 – SEE HAY BOOKS ON WYE
Freed from the ban on the chains of the 17th century, the bookstores on Hay on Wye were designed to be cared for and enjoyed, especially during the Hay Festival at the end of May, when writers from the country descended on the city. Hay is a great place to have a few days’ fun and brain activity to do in the Wye Valley.
For more information see our article on how to spend a weekend at Hay on Wye including our favorite indoor and outdoor activities in this book-loving gem.
12 – CONTINUE THE GOSPEL POST ON THE DARK MOUNTAINS
Strictly speaking, the Gospel Pass is not in the Wye Valley but, being just a border technology, and a magnificent place, we realized that it would be negligent to exclude us from our list of things to do in the Wye Valley.
The road to Gospel Pass follows the long, narrow Ewyas Valley, along the gorgeous roads with views of this rolling country and dark mountains on the other. The one-track road is the highest in Wales and reaches its peak at Hay Pass car park. From here you can take the hill to Hay Bluff, the highest point in the area.
Continue along the Gospel Pass and reach the highest point of the Llanthony skyline where the ruins of the darker mountains are formed. It’s a great place to hang paint even if you’re not in the Wye valley.
SITTING IN THE CENTER OF THE EYE
With so much to do in the Wye Valley, staying in as much space as possible is important. But with such a magnificent river range, it is not surprising that many of the most beautiful settlements in the Wye Valley make use of this magnificent area.
There are also many different living options, such as this hidden tree for example. Alternatively, check out CozyCozy which offers hotels, vacation rentals and quirky accommodations in popular destinations.
Here are some ideas from us about the best places to live in Wye Valley.