Brecon's Attractions

Brecon is a medium sized market town founded in 1093 with a population of around 8000 situated in the south of Powys on the confluence of the rivers Usk and Honddu.

Set to the north of the Brecon Beacons National Park which covers 519 square miles and contains a wide variety of countryside, Brecon is within easy reach of many large centres of population. The National Park Visitor Centre, situated on the wild moorland of Mynydd Illtyd, contains a wealth of information about the area’s unique history, geology, flora and fauna. The town centre shops are just part of the rich heritage and historic buildings that are situate within a short distance. The town is a mix of Georgian buildings, the Guild Hall, churches and recently renovated shops and dwellings. Come with me on a tour of the town and experience some of Brecon’s attractions. Beginning in the Bulwark head east toward the Watton on your right you will see Brecknock Museum standing proudly on Watton mount. This building was once the town’s Assize Court and still has an old court room inside. It also houses a great wealth of artefacts and displays and is well worth a visit. Continuing on down the Watton towards the avenue of trees call in at the Oriel Jazz Gallery, containing paintings and photographs and audio visual material, it gives you a wonderful introduction to the world of jazz. Carry on down to the South Wales Borderers Museum which contains a comprehensive collection of artefacts from the regiment’s historic past. Brecon has been home to the regiment for over 120 years and still retains strong links with the military. Cross over the road and walk back towards town, about 100 meters from the Barracks turn down into Rich Way and this leads to Brecon’s new theatre. Opened by Prince Charles in 1996 it is an impressive building standing at the terminus of the Brecon and Monmouth Canal. From here proceed back to town and visit St Mary’s church, the impressive stained glass window is a big feature of its interior views. Now we go north from the Bulwark into the High Street past Lloyds Bank, dating from 1778 down Ship Street and over the river Usk to Christ College. This public school was founded by King Henry 8th in 1541 on the site of a Dominican Friary. Retracing your steps back across the river and turn left into Market Street, a short walk brings you to Brecon Castle. Built by the Normans in 1090 the remains now form part of the east wing of the Castle of Brecon Hotel. Over the bridge spanning the river Honddu is the Postern which leads to Priory Hill atop which stands the Cathedral. The Norman Church was built around 1093 shortly after their conquest of this part of Wales, probably on the site of an earlier Celtic Church. At the Cathedral there is now a Coffee Shop for you to take refreshment and a Heritage Centre. This short tour will probably fill half a day and give a flavour of what is on offer in Brecon. Those with more time to spare can take in the walks along the river Usk at the promenade and along the Island Fields as well as along the Canal towpath and also the Priory Groves. Around Brecon there are many activities on offer for the more adventurous. Walking, cycling, pony trekking, outdoor pursuits, canoeing, camping and many more. Annual events such as the Brecon Jazz festival on the second weekend in August and the Brecon Agricultural Show at the end of August attract a wide variety of people. There is a twice weekly livestock and produce market. Comfortable accommodation, hospitable inns and a variety of restaurants allows the long stay visitor to make full use of the wide range of facilities on offer in and around Brecon.