Trip Planner:   Europe  /  UK  /  Wales  /  South Wales  /  Torfaen  /  Blaenavon  /  Nature  /  Big Pit: National Coal Museum
Big Pit: National Coal Museum, Blaenavon
(4.8/5 based on 1,500+ reviews on the web)
Explore the underground world of a working coal mine at Big Pit: National Coal Museum, dedicated to operational preservation of the Welsh coal-mining heritage. This is no ordinary "theme park" tourist attraction, and the pit props and steel bands are not for show, but for holding up the mine’s roof. The water flowing down the tunnels toward the cages is real, apart from the fact that, unlike a century ago when it splashed all over the miners’ feet, it now flows down purpose-built channels. Safety measures are strictly enforced and explained to visitors before each tour. Automatic gas monitoring systems are discreetly positioned around the tunnels, as are emergency telephones. Special talks and exhibitions are also regularly hosted by the museum. Add Big Pit: National Coal Museum and other attractions to your Blaenavon trip itinerary using our Blaenavon travel itinerary planner.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • Only cost £3 for parking, this museum offers guided underground tour for the coal mine. They dressed you in helmet and safety harness before sending you down the mine shaft with a old miner, and he ta...  more »
  • Just the idea of spending every daylight hour underground gives me goosebumps. The experience of standing in absolute silence in the pitch dark was one to remember. The history of coal and the lives o...  more »
  • A cheap day with loads of great historical knowledge to take away with you. The guid was brilliant with the whole group and everything about the day was great value including the shop and cafe. 
Google
  • We visited as it was recommended as a good thing to see and do. We enjoyed the underground tour with our guide Wayne. (Just keep your head low!) We then had lunch, cafe - not a large choice and quite expensive. Canteen we didn't eat as queues were long and again limited choice. Views were very good along with the history of the place. Well worth a look just eat before hand though.
  • Well worth a visit. The mine is very interesting and has a number of exhibits above ground and, of course, a chance to tour the mine it's self. The guides are excellent and very friendly, if a bit business like (but. let's face it safety is very important). Great for young and old alike.
  • An enjoyable tour and walk around in otherwise poor weather but unfortunately the wait for the underground bit was over an hour and a half so we had to miss it. The rest of the site is open and you walk between each section on good paths. Considering the site is free (£3 parking for the day) I would say it is very good value. Watch their coffee shop though as it was pricey for very basic fare.
  • Had an excellent day here despite getting lost on the way. The guides are clearly a very close team and really know their stuff. We were a mixed group on the tour, myself and my friends being from around Wales, other members from overseas. Being from Wales as well really helped build a rapport with all the guides around the site, and the exhibition in the shower block was really interesting and in some parts quite emotional. What was nice to see was that while the heavy political information is there to read (and well worth reading) there are things to keep children out of the way and otherwise occupied. The King Coal exhibition was new from last time I was there and provided an interesting bridge between the tour underground with its historical angle and the way that modern mines are run. Well worth visiting, make a day of it as there's a lot to see and take in.
  • Just bloody awesome! Its real, the guides are real and the history and workings of the mine are just amazing. This has not been covered in cotton wool. Its a real mine and you go down the shaft in the same lift as the miners did when it was operating. ALL the lads that show you around ARE ex miners and the stories they tell are funny, sad and just great. I could go on but just go see it yourselves. Wear sturdy shoes and mind ya head :-)