List Wales


The market town of Carmarthen lies on the River Towy in Carmarthenshire, West Wales, situated midway between Cardigan and Swansea. Renowned as Wales’ oldest town, Carmarthen offers visitors an attractive mix of history and culture alongside modern day amenities.

History of Carmarthen

Highlights of Carmarthen’s rich history include Carmarthen Castle, the Black book of Carmarthen, and the remains of Merlin’s Oak.

The ruins of Carmarthen castle can be found overlooking the river Towy from Notts Square and along Castle Hill. Originally built by the Normans during the 11th century, the castle endured a series of attacks during the 12th and 13th centuries resulting in significant reconstruction and the addition of defensive features including the stone curtain wall. During the 18th and 19th centuries the castle was converted into a county prison, whilst today the castle grounds house Carmarthen’s council offices.

The Black Book of Carmarthen was written in c.1250 and is considered to be the earliest surviving Welsh language manuscript. Bound in black, the book comprises a collection of poems with reference to religion and also the legends of King Arthur and Myrddin (otherwise known as the wizard Merlin) who was believed to have been born in a cave near Carmarthen.

Merlin’s tree refers to an old oak that once stood in the centre of Carmarthen town. One particular story tells how Merlin declared that "When Merlin’s tree shall tumble down, then shall fall Carmarthen town”. The remains of the old oak can be seen today at the Carmarthenshire County Museum alongside interesting displays of many other local historical artefacts.

Attractions in Carmarthen

Visitors to Carmarthen can enjoy a range of cultural and historical attractions within the town and surrounding area. Located in St Catherine’s Walk is the Apollo cinema Carmarthen, Europe’s first all-digital, fully 3D enabled multi-screen cinema. On King Street, Carmarthen's Lyric theatre offers an exciting programme of productions including theatre, music, ballet and comedy. For art lovers, the Oriel Myrddin Gallery on Church Lane showcases contemporary art and craft exhibitions from Wales and the UK.

Just a couple of miles outside of Carmarthen lies Merlin’s Hill Centre at Alltyfyrddin Farm, Abergwili. Here visitors can follow in the footsteps of the legendary wizard Merlin along the ancient paths up to an Iron Age Hillfort. The farm also features a heritage centre displaying farming traditions over the years, and collection of woollen gifts made from their flock of Jacob sheep. Also situated in Abergwili and set in beautiful parkland is the Carmarthenshire County Museum which hosts an exciting range of displays dating back to Carmarthen’s Roman past.

Local Amenities

Carmarthen has an active sports scene including Carmarthen Town A.F.C, Carmarthen Quins Rugby Club, and Carmarthen Bowling Club, as well as a leisure centre and swimming pool located in Johnstown. The town is also home to the University of Wales Trinity Saint David, formerly known as Trinity College Carmarthen, before it merged with the University of Wales Lampeter.

Having recently undergone major redevelopment, Carmarthen’s town centre offers a wide choice of shops, cafés and restaurants stretching from Merlin’s Walk in the south of the town up to the Market Hall and St Catherine’s Walk in the north of the town. The town enjoys an excellent transport network with the surrounding area served by Carmarthen train station on the south of the river Towy and Carmarthen bus station located on Blue Street. A Park and Ride can also be found at the Nant-y-ci showground to the west of the town.

Ample parking is available in the pay and display car parks located across Carmarthen including John Street car park and St Catherine’s Walk car park to the north of the town and Friars Park Car Park and Merlin’s Walk car park to the south.

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Further information

Carmarthen Map


Towns Near Carmarthen

Abergwili (1.8 miles)

Places near Carmarthen

Carmarthen Market (0 miles) Shops in Carmarthenshire
The Café at Number 4 (0.1 miles) Cafés in Carmarthenshire
Emma Phillips Bridal Studio (0.1 miles) Shops in Carmarthenshire
Restaurant 7teen & Deli (0.1 miles) Restaurants in Carmarthenshire
Hamilton's Wine Bar and Restaurant (0.1 miles) Restaurants in Carmarthenshire
Apollo Cinema Carmarthen (0.1 miles) Cinemas & Theatres in Carmarthenshire
Diablos's (0.1 miles) Pubs and Inns in Carmarthenshire
The Lyric Theatre (0.1 miles) Cinemas & Theatres in Carmarthenshire
The Rose and Crown Hotel (0.1 miles) Restaurants in Carmarthenshire
Boar's Head Hotel (0.1 miles) Hotels in Carmarthenshire
The Antique Centre (0.1 miles) Shops in Carmarthenshire
Mountain Antiques (0.2 miles) Shops in Carmarthenshire
Oriel Myrddin Gallery (0.2 miles) Galleries in Carmarthenshire
The Falcon Hotel & Restaurant (0.2 miles) Hotels in Carmarthenshire
Spilman Hotel & Restaurant (0.2 miles) Hotels in Carmarthenshire
The Ivy Bush Royal Hotel (0.2 miles) Hotels in Carmarthenshire
Stag & Pheasant (0.2 miles) Pubs and Inns in Carmarthenshire
Furnace House Surgery (0.2 miles) Doctors Surgeries in Carmarthenshire
Frankie & Benny's (0.2 miles) Restaurants in Carmarthenshire
Fortune House (0.3 miles) Restaurants in Carmarthenshire
St. Peter's Surgery (0.3 miles) Doctors Surgeries in Carmarthenshire
Morfa Lane Surgery (0.3 miles) Doctors Surgeries in Carmarthenshire
The New King George (0.4 miles) Pubs and Inns in Carmarthenshire
McDonald's Restaurants Ltd (0.8 miles) Take Aways in Carmarthenshire
Krazy Kids (0.8 miles) Days Out in Carmarthenshire
Lan Las (0.8 miles) Holiday Homes in Carmarthenshire
Dolwerdd Bed & Breakfast (1 miles) Bed and Breakfast in Carmarthenshire
Glangwili General Hospital (1.2 miles) Hospitals in Carmarthenshire
Carmarthenshire County Museum (1.8 miles) Museums in Carmarthenshire
Gwili Railway (2.3 miles) Places of Interest in Carmarthenshire
Merlin's Hill Centre (2.5 miles) Days Out in Carmarthenshire
Cwmdwyfran Farm Holiday Cottages (2.9 miles) Cottages in Carmarthenshire
White Water Canoe & Kayak Hire (3 miles) Outdoor Activities in Carmarthenshire
Carmarthen Golf Club (3.1 miles) Golf in Carmarthenshire
Red Kite Cottage (3.5 miles) Cottages in Carmarthenshire
Penrhiw Cottage (3.6 miles) Cottages in Carmarthenshire
Shakeshafts (4.3 miles) Bed and Breakfast in Carmarthenshire
Capel Dewi Uchaf Country House (4.3 miles) Bed and Breakfast in Carmarthenshire
Sarnau Mansion (4.4 miles) Bed and Breakfast in Carmarthenshire
List Wales, High Street, Llandysul, Ceredigion, SA44 4DN Tel: 01559 363553 - Mon 21 May 2018 00:38:36