Trip Planner:   Europe  /  UK  /  Wales  /  Powys  /  Pen-y-cae  /  Nature  /  The National Showcaves Centre for Wales
The National Showcaves Centre for Wales, Pen-y-cae
(4/5 based on 900+ reviews on the web)
The National Showcaves Centre for Wales is the main attraction for the 17 km (11 mi) long cave system also known as the National Showcaves Centre for Wales. The bones of 42 humans were found in one of the chambers of this cave system, along with a number of animal bones. The first explorers of the caves, brothers Tommy and Jeff Morgan, used candlelight to find their way through the passages. Now the underground lakes and Britain's most spectacular cave formations are lit by electric lights. The ticket price includes ten other attractions on the grounds, including a rebuilt Iron Age Village and a museum that outlines the conservation programs managed by the caves. For The National Showcaves Centre for Wales and beyond, use our Pen-y-cae vacation planner to get the most from your Pen-y-cae vacation.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • If you read my review from last year? This is pretty much a follow up. Still very expensive entrance fees, they have cut back some of the grass, but there is still too much under growth for small kids...  more »
  • Two cave systems plus interpretations and lifesize models of dinosaurs dotted about a limestone slope. 
  • We had never heard of the showcaves before, except for stumbling upon a brochure in the hotel lobby. We decided to drive up from Swansea and we were not disappointed! We ended up spending just over 3 ...  more »
Google
  • “A large site, needs more modernising” This is a great location in the stunning Brecon Beacons, it involves some climbing, hills and steps, but yeah, caves and mountains if you expected it to be on one level and really easy access you clearly are not paying attention to the fact that it has caves. There are bits of this attraction that simply wow you, or provide good value: the Cathedral Cave is amazing; the play barn lets the kids burn off steam; the cave system is well laid out; the conservation efforts are clearly well considered; the staff were friendly and helpful; the place is clean; there is a lot of activities on one ticket. Others have less effect: bone cave was hard to get to, but signposted as such, but to my mind was filled with odd distractions, especially the bear; the sound system was often distracting and the looping meant you didn't know what point you were at; some of the exhibits are looking dated, sorry guys but the dinosaurs are looking a bit old and could do with new paint, especially for the youth of today, also they seem inaccurate to modern ideas of dinosaur colouring as shown on TV documentaries (however see below); could do with toilets near the animals and play area. On the note of the dinosaurs my three and four year old loved walking through the legs of one near the entrance, so maybe more interactive experience might work? It is clear, from the fact there is an application to give you some virtual reality fun that the management are aware what century they are in. I personally like to say thanks to that, and thanks for having staff with tablets to let those people without the app see the fun. The museum was small and so was the shop and I feel that investment in these might yield greater reward, maybe more diversity of items for sale? Space is an issue tough. Keeping this type of attraction alive 365 days is going to be hard and this probably accounts for what others see as high prices, I thought it was reasonable considering the overhead and sinking of investment for staff and safety/upkeep. Will be nice to return in a couple of years to see what has been altered/updated. Visited April 2015
  • Absolutely fantastic place to visit!!! Great views from the top from the highest point. Stunning caves with adorable waterfalls inside of. Lots of things to do with children! Really good fun!
  • Absolutely brilliant; I really enjoyed my visit to the caves. Facinating history and the beauty of the geology is incredible. Only walked around the three caves; couldn't stop long enough to experience the rest of the Centre. I will definitely be going again and this time, I'll be taking my kids; they'll love it!
  • Tesco Clubcards FTW. I got an MLG discount off everything. Every little does help. Plastic dinosaurs should have been real but they can't afford alive ones because they are exctinct apparently which I think is an conspiracy theory. This is an answer if you type in "are dinosaurs extinct" into Google: "Many people believe dinosaurs to be extinct. However, it is evident that dinosaurs live on today as birds. The Cretaceous-Tertiary extinction event caused extinction of all dinosaurs except for the line that had already given rise to the first birds (4, Dinosaur)." But appart from that its cool isn't. I took wheelchair as I am disabled and I was bouncing all over the place on the rocky roads (even though I love rocky road dessert). suitable for all ages shapes and sizes and genders and vegetarianism.
  • Had a fantastic day at the caves. Felt a little bit smug that I'd remembered warm clothes for the caves themselves. Carried my baby in a sling, wouldn't have felt comfortable carrying her in my arms as needed to hold grab rails in certain areas. It really isn't very accessible for pushchairs in open areas as very steep but this is clearly advertised on website. Cathedral cave was absolutely beautiful and well worth the hike to the top. Toilets are very limited on site so needs a little organising of children. Food in cafe was fresh and hot. Very busy though as you'd expect.