22nd Apr 2012 3:17pm | By Frankie Mulliin
Looking for the perfect holiday in Wales? So were we. And we found our ideal break in the UK in the Pembrokeshire National Park - in a holiday park overlooking the Preseli Mountains.
As the one-carriage train pulls out of Swansea and sets off across ever more remote Welsh countryside, my friend Sam and I breathe almost theatrical sighs of relaxation. Blanking out the cider-drinking uni students a few seats down, we are already settling into a holier-than-thou ‘I’m on a detox’ state of mind.
We’re en route to Bluestone, an eco resort in the middle of the Pembrokeshire National Park. Along this quiet track, the train stops by request only and we’re the sole people to alight at Narberth.
A short taxi ride later we’re at Bluestone, driving a golf buggy towards the timber lodge that will be home for the weekend.
Call me a snob, but the term ‘holiday park’ usually has me running for the hills. Bluestone, however, is already in said hills and goes a long way to breaking down some of my assumptions about this type of getaway. For a start, there’s the accommodation.
Roomy wooden cabins look out over the Preseli Mountains – on some days. these distant peaks are sharp and clear, on others they rise from the mist. Then, there’s Bluestone’s green pledge.
The resort operates on principles of sustainability and attempts to cause minimal impact on the environment – there’s no shortage of recycling facilities and the park aims to reduce energy and water consumption wherever possible.
We spend our first night in a pub located in the faux old Welsh village at the centre of the park. Despite the convincing stone exterior, the boozer’s authenticity is slightly dubious, but we don’t care. “We’re here to get healthy,” we say virtuously after a solitary bottle of wine.
True to our word, we’re up early the next day and are rewarded with glorious sunshine. And no hangover! First up is a session of laser clay pigeon shooting. Instead of a bullet, we fire a beam from a modified shotgun and a digital screen registers whether we’ve hit our flying target.
I suffer from the delusion that whenever I try something new, I’ll discover it’s my calling and be heralded ‘a natural’. As frequently happens, however, this isn’t so, and Sam wipes the floor with me, hitting as many clay birds as I miss. I make her swap guns in case the competition has been rigged. It hasn’t.
Somehow still friends, we make our way to Camp Smokey, a wooden bar with BBQ at the bottom of a wooded ravine.
Click to the next page to continue reading...
Greece’s islands are a top destination for sun-seeking travellers – the lacework of beaches,...
Now the summer’s closing in, the toughest decision is this: city break or sun-and-sea holiday?
Here's our pick of the world's best scuba diving holidays.
London’s recent heatwave has us all hot and bothered and gagging to strip off. We started thinking...
Here’s our (not-exhaustive) list of the best breaks for being bad. Not that we in any way...