Helen Davies, The Sunday Times Home editor, said: "Finding our very own best place to live now feels more important than ever, for our wellbeing and wealth, happiness and health. This year we were looking for community spirit along with convenience and culture. There is so much going on around the country, and so many great places that the choice was a hard one.”
For those searching for a picturesque location to call their home, you’ll be hard-pushed to find somewhere as well-connected as Chepstow. Just a two hour drive from London and just over half an hour away from Bristol, Cardiff and the Brecon Beacons, Chepstow is ideally situated to allow for country-living with city links. This close commuting proximity, along with the recent scrapping of the Severn bridges tolls, has made Chepstow a popular choice with English home buyers.
In its description of Chepstow, The Sunday Times said the newcomers were “tempted by the pretty little streets beneath the 11th-century castle, dotted with whitewashed buildings, colourful cottages and Georgian townhouses”.
Chepstow boasts plenty of history through the ages, with medieval cottages, the nearby Tintern Abbey, the Old Wye Bridge and St Mary’s Priory. The historic town is still renowned locally for its thriving markets as a centre for local farmers to convene and trade. However, Chepstow has also evolved over the years into an enjoyable shopping destination, inspired by local products and offering niche, boutique shops. Plus the town is home to one of the nation’s best loved racecourses too!
With so much going for it, it’s easy to see why Chepstow attracts large numbers of residents and tourists alike.
Whilst exploring the town you are greeted by an array of diverse independent shops, from the hidden gems to well-loved social hubs, up and down the length of the high street, and beyond. Branching streets uncover additional venues, shops and unique eateries to sample, whilst just a short walk down the hill you are greeted by the beach.
The impressive Victorian Pier, full of history and character, is one of the last remaining in Britain. Looking out onto the Bristol Channel, the Pavilion Building and its Pier are essential landmarks to visit and are admired and loved by visitors and residents alike. Cosmeston Lake is a prime choice for those searching for a wildlife walk and the barrage is just a short scenic walk away too. Penarth’s marina is nestled among a nest of winding homes, which all enjoy the spectacular views, and provides 24-hour access to the water via Cardiff Bay barrage.
Whether it be a place spend the day, or a destination to aspire to live, retire and grow up, Penarth really is the town that has it all.
In Mumbles, you’ll find true quintessential coastal living. Nestled in the curve of the Gower Peninsula coastline, it is the ideal spot for exploring the beautiful bays around Swansea and Gower, which are overflowing with native wildlife.
With a comforting community feel, but a cosmopolitan and culturally rich vibe, Mumbles is a desirable place to lay down roots, and you won’t have to travel far to find all of the entertainment opportunities you need. Surrounded by ancient lighthouses, a Victorian pier, and a crumbling castle, you can soak up the sea views, explore the curious bays, reflect on local history and tradition, or embark on outdoor adventures right on your doorstep.
As one of Wales’ best loved coastal gems, Mumbles holds many precious memories of summers spent by the sea for those who have lived and holidayed there. It’s hard to believe that you could have all of this within close proximity to the vibrant city of Swansea, and with easy access to the M4.