Monday, 3 September 2018

A Toddler explores Dan Yr Ogof - The National Show caves of Wales

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A Toddler explores Dan Yr Ogof - The National Show Caves of Wales


Last Wednesday, Bee was having his jabs and was with his mummy, so we wanted to take Bear to somewhere special. I wanted to use the opportunity of just the three of us and take Bear somewhere that we wouldn't go with Bee. We chose Dan Yr Ogof - The National Showcaves of Wales.
The showcaves are not suitable for buggies due to the steps and so we thought this was the perfect place to visit without Bee.

We arrived just after it opened and managed to park very close to the entrance. There is an overflow car park at the bottom of the hill, and a free little road train that travels up and down the hill continuously.

Bear was so excited, he ran to the entrance and was hardly visible posing under the giant dinosaur. What a great start!

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Once inside there are more dinosaurs everywhere, there are over 200 and many move. Bear was very brave and put his hand in the dinosaurs mouth. Chomp! We counted his fingers and he had them all.

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 The caves are clearly marked and the main cave is through a tunnel guarded by a Welsh dragon.

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It is quite dark inside the caves, and very wet. Emergency torches are outside but we couldn't find one that worked so took our chances.

Bear loved it. He was a little nervous at first and held our hands, but once his eyes had adjusted he was fine.


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The caves are amazing, with certain parts lit up and story boards explaining what you are looking at. Look out for the curtains and the bacon!

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The second cave is the Cathedral cave, it is large as one would expect but so noisy! The water pours down and the footpath weaves it's way through the waterfalls much to Bears delight. You can get married here but how you'd hear yourself speak I do not know.



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The last cave is the Bone Cave. I didn't go to this cave as the entrance is a back breaking low tunnel where you have to wear hard hats. I have a bad back and just couldn't bend over for that long. No problem for Bear haha. On the way to the Bone Cave is a group of dinosaurs and some volcanoes. The water bubbles and the volcanoes smoke, then suddenly one shoots water into the air with a WHOOSH! Made us all jump, so we had to watch it again and again.

Bear and Grandad went up into the Bone Cave and said it was a big cave once inside, and yes it does have bones in it.

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The signs direct you past the Iron Age village, I was expecting somewhere we could walk around and explore but it's behind a fence and quite boring. This was the only bit that disappointed me, Bear didn't notice he just ran past it.

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Once we had explored the caves we stopped for an ice cream and lunch. There are lots of picnic tables but it had been raining so we decided to eat in the car.

Then we caught the road train down the hill to the Shire Horse Centre, this is included in the entrance price.
We took our buggy as Bear was already showing signs of being tired, there are lots of steps and lots of walking.

The path to the Shire Horse Centre goes through a field of sheep, llamas and rheas. They didn't bother us at all. I'm not sure if Bear was secretly disappointed that the llamas didn't spit at us.

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At the Shire Horse Centre there are all sorts of animals, pigs, donkeys and of course the horses. Inside a barn are the cutest chipmonks too.

There is also a playground (ages 6 - 10) and another barn with karting for 3- 6 year olds, but we didn't get to do that as we were all worn out.

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We had an amazing day, there is so much to do and we spent four hours there and didn't do it all.

Entrance fees are £15 adults and £12 children ages 3 -12, under 3s go in for free. We used Tesco Vouchers and so our entrance fee cost £14, an absolute bargain. Even at full price it's good value as there is enough to entertain everyone all day.

Please check the National Showcaves of Wales website for opening times and up to date prices.

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