We arrived in Wales after our long night of sleeping in the car and were just looking forward to sleep by the time we got to Caerleon (on the River Usk), but when we drove through the village and saw how old and awesome it was, and read signs pointing to Roman Baths, Barracks and a museum, it was hard to justify messing up our sleeping schedule and miss all that. After some showers and dragging our feet a bit, we left The Roman Lodge hotel to check out the village. We walked around a bit and ended up at The Hanbury Arms an Inn that’s been standing in Caerleon next to the River Usk since the 16th century. They had a lentil burger, vegetarian chili and a couple more vegetarian options which was great, and Brains beer which was amusing in name and good for drinking (naturally).
We didn’t make it to the Roman sights that afternoon, as everything was pretty much closing anyway, but the next day we got up early with a list of things to do, first being the Roman Baths, Fortress, Museum and Barracks. I always wish there was more time for things like Museums. I could stare at a tiny little carved gem button for a long time, studying the detail and craftsman ship of all the trinkets and tools in a museum like that, but we did our rounds and moved from one sight to the next in a timely manner. I picked up every pamphlet I could find to read on the road in case I missed anything. Did you know that the Romans invented the “Swiss army knife” ? (not to mention about 1000 other things we use today).
The village of Caerleon was old and well kept. Narrow street and a one way “loop” road design that will keep you going in circles around the town if you miss your turn.
After Caerleon and a brisk history on the Roman invasion of the area, we spent the day roaming around Wales looking at castles!