Visit Wales through fantastic TV shows and films set (or filmed in) Wales! Or by listening to Welsh musicians and musical groups, or reading Welsh literature.
Make some popcorn (or your new favorite Welsh food!), put your feet up, stream a Welsh show, listen to some Welsh tunes, try one of these Welsh authors or books, or head to S4C, the Welsh language television channel, for some language immersion. Afterward, you’ll have to remind yourself you’re still in your own home!
Visit Wales via TV
Visit Wales through the Gavin and Stacey (comedy/Amazon Video + more) television series, which transports you straight to Barry, South Wales, and the story of a Welsh woman and English man meeting, developing a relationship, and the amusing events that subsequently occur. Or, visit Wales through both the Dr. Who and Torchwood series (sci-fi/fantasy/BBCAmerica + more). In addition, the first season of the series reboot in 2005, showcases many locations in Cardiff.
Perhaps try the current Netflix hit Hinterland (Welsh crime noir/Netflix), filmed and set in Wales – you can even find it performed in Welsh as well (look for Y Gwyll, or The Dusk). In addition, if you’re yearning for retro Wales, check out The Prisoner (Drama/Amazon Video, etc), filmed in the lovely and unusual town of Portmerion in the 1960s.
Fantastic Welsh Films
If you prefer films, check out The Old Dark House (1932/Boris Karloff, Charles Laughton, Gloria Stuart/Amazon Prime Video), considered the original “Scary House” horror film, which takes place in Wales on a dark and stormy night. In the same vein, The Wolf Man (1941/Lon Chaney Jr., Claude Rains/Amazon Prime) may tickle your fancy.
Not keen on being frightened? Try How Green Was My Valley (1941/Roddy McDowall, Maureen O’Hara/YouTube), considered director John Ford’s best drama – about a coal-mining family and the changes family members endure over time.
Prefer something modern? Why not cue up Twin Town (1997/Rhys Ifans, Llyr Ifans/YouTube), a bright anarchic tale of twin brothers and the chaos that follows them when they try to help their dad out of a jam. After that, watch The Edge of Love (2008/Kierra Knightley, Sienna Miller, Matthew Rhys/Amazon Prime + more) which was filmed around Wales. Lastly, you can view the sweet comedy/drama The Englishman Who Went up a Hill But Came Down a Mountain (1995/Hugh Grant, Colm Meaney/YouTube and more) This film demonstrates how a town’s pride was threatened by cartographers who find their mountain is 16 feet too short to be deemed a mountain. Sound boring? Not at all – try it and let us know what you think.
Welsh Authors and Literature
If you prefer reading, Wales has an embarrassment of riches in the author department. Try Roald Dahl (children/young adult), or perhaps Jasper Fforde or Malcolm Pryce (both absurdist fiction) for engaging reads. Looking for something more challenging? Perhaps Dylan Thomas (poetry and more) or Bertrand Russell (philosophy) will engage your imagination. Or if you prefer thrillers, read some of Ken Follett’s work. Or perhaps go very old-school and lose yourself in one of the various translations of The Mabinogion – the first prose stories in British literature, from the 12th and 13th centuries.
More books we recommend:
- Last Tango in Aberystwyth (Malcolm Pryce)
- Matilda (Roald Dahl)
- A Child’s Christmas in Wales (Dylan Thomas)
- In Praise of Idleness: And Other Essays (Bertrand Russell)
- The Eyre Affair (Jasper Fforde)
- A Column of Fire (Ken Follett)
- Until Our Blood Dries (Kit Habianic)
- The Dig (Cynan Jones)
Visit Wales with Welsh Music
In addition to the many Welsh choirs, listen to these groups to immerse yourself in all things Welsh:
- Super Furry Animals (psychedelic/alternative)
- Gryff Rhys (Welsh and English lyrics)
- Cate LeBon
- Anweledig (alternative)
- Cerys Matthews (traditional Welsh)
- Tom Jones
- Manic Street Preachers (alternative)
- Lo-Cut a Sleifar (Welsh rap)
- Robin Huw Bowen (Welsh triple harp)
- Ffynnon (traditional Welsh)
- 9bach (Welsh alternative)
What’s your favorite show or film set in Wales? Do you love a particular Welsh author? Which of the Welsh music genre do you pick? Let us know in the comments, we love to hear your thoughts! If you’d like to prolong your visit to Wales, check these virtual tours, or make and enjoy a traditional Welsh meal. And when you’re ready to travel to Wales, solo or in a small group, contact us – we’ll get you there and make your dreams come true!!
Start planning your trip