Friday roadtrip

Yesterday my wife Claire, my son Noah and I headed off on a roadtrip through Mid Wales to the edge of the Snowdonia National Park and then back down the coast through Ceredigion before heading home via Lampeter and Llandovery.

The journey in total was just over 260 miles. We left at 8ish in the morning and got home at 17:30, not bad for a day out.

We got to take in some of the most beautiful scenery in Wales. And visit some new places that we hadn’t been to before.

For Noah who is nearly 3 the journey was very exciting. From the tractor shop at Builth Wells to the cows, sheep, horses and red kites throughout the trip. The highlight for him though was two passes by an American special forces MC-130J (Hercules), once just outside Machynlleth and then again straight over the town at somewhere near 600-700ft. There was a very big “Wow” from the back seat. Another highlight was the choo choo train crossing the level crossing in front of us just outside Borth.

First stop was Machynlleth. The Powys town is full of history with the Clock Tower at the centre of the town instantly recognisable. That’s one of the reasons I wanted to visit, to photograph this beautiful places with its backdrop of mountains. Machynlleth was also the location of Owain Glyndwr’s parliament in 1404. Glyndwr was a legendary Welsh ruler and the last native Welsh man to hold the title Prince of Wales.The building on the site where the parliament once stood now houses historic artefacts related to him.

Another photo stop was the Museum of Modern Art near the Clock Tower before heading to the Pont-ar-Ddyfi bridge over the River Dyfi which sits on the edge of the town on the A487.

From here we headed to the RSPB Nature Reserve at Ynys Hir, famous for its Osprey visitors every spring. It’s one of the only places in Wales to see Ospreys.

The next section took us down the Ceredigion coast. First stop was Borth, somewhere neither me or Claire had been before. We all enjoyed a good walk along the pebbles even finding some perfectly shaped shells.

We then made the short trip to Clarach Bay another new location for us. Here we parked up over looking the beach and again had a nice walk in the fresh air. It was picnic time, taking in the sea views with hardly a cloud in the sky. The Welsh coast at its mesmerising best.

After lunch we travelled through Aberystwyth and on to Llanon. The views from the coast road just outside Llanon are spectacular. Our stop here coincided with a farmer feeding his sheep and lambs which were grazing in a field over looking the coast. They were perfectly placed to be in the foreground of an image with the coast behind them.

From Aberaeron we started to head home, via Lampeter, Llandovery, Brecon and Abergavenny.

Wales at its finest with spring well and truly in the air.

You can see more of my images here: www.nathanaeljonesphotography.com

With Ceredigion images here: www.nathanaeljonesphotography.com/Ceredigion

St David’s Day mission

About 10 days ago I was contacted by Visit Wales and asked if I would submit images to be used by them on St David’s Day.

Visit Wales have shared my images from Instagram on their Twitter and Instagram accounts before.

The brief was that the images had to be easily identifiable as Wales and if possible have references to St David’s Day, so beautiful daffodils in bloom. Images of spring were also wanted, lambs and their mothers and flowers.

I jumped at the opportunity and over the last 2 weekends set about getting possible images.

Locations I visited included:

  • Caerphilly Castle
  • Castell Coch (twice)
  • Abergavenny Castle
  • Big Pit National Coal Museum
  • Talgarth
  • Brecon
  • Usk
  • Chainbridge

12 images were submitted and 2 were used on the Wales Facebook page, which you can view on the link.

It was a magical mystery tour of places I hadn’t been to in years. My son Noah loved it too, especially the castles, Abergavenny seemed a particular favourite of his with room to run around and explore.

I went to Castell Coch twice, the first time it was veiled in heavy mist and looked very eerie. The daffodils had only just started to open. So I returned a week later when the skies were lighter and a few more dafs had opened.

The search for lambs took me to Abergavenny, Talgarth and Brecon without a single lamb being spotted. I then tried Usk, Chainbridge and Goytre with more success.

Here are a selection of the images I made over those 2 weekends.

You can see more of my images on my website including my gallery of Welsh castles and monuments.