Dragon Tours is based in Wales and specialises in tours of this ancient land. The Welsh people are the descendants of the Ancient Britons, the original inhabitants of Britain. The Welsh language (spoken as a first language by over 20% of the population) is one of the oldest spoken languages in Europe and is descended from the ancient Brythonic language spoken by those original Britons. The language is very much in evidence in Wales (all road signs are bi-lingual and in many places Welsh is the predominant language). 

Our tours aim to provide a unique insight into the history and culture of Wales. The country has a very long history. The oldest human remains in Britain were discovered on The Gower Peninsula in South Wales in 1823. The famous Red Lady of Paviland (later proved to be a man) has been dated at over 26,000 years old. Wales is awash with Pre-historic remains such as burial chambers and stone circles. The first stone circle to be erected at Stonehenge was constructed from the famous Preseli Blue Stones (carried over 200 miles from a quarry in West Wales to Salisbury Plain over 5000 years ago). 

A great flowering of Celtic Art appeared in Wales during the Bronze and Iron Age and the Romans were so concerned about the power and influence of the mystical druids that they wiped them out at their stronghold on the Island of Anglesey off the coast of north Wales (the Island has a wealth of Pre-historic, Celtic and Medieval treasures). The Romans left their mark on Wales too, notably at the town of Caerleon which has Britain’s only fully excavated Roman amphitheatre, along with a bathhouse, barracks and excellent Roman museum. Caerleon has close links with the King Arthur stories. Geoffrey of Monmouth (a medieval writer who wrote down a lot of the Arthur legends) named Caerleon as Arthur’s chief base. For many Arthur enthusiasts Caerleon is Camelot and Arthur is a Welsh hero who fought against the new Anglo-Saxon invaders of Britain who took advantage of the Roman abandonment of their province of Brittania to seek new lands and ultimately create England. 

After the Romans left Britain in the early fifth century tribes from northern Europe invaded and gradually pushed the native Britons westwards. In the eighth century the Saxon King Offa of Mercia built an earthwork defence between England and Wales and this boundary still basically marks the border between England and Wales today. From this period Wales existed as its own country and developed its own unique identity. This came under threat following the Norman Conquest of England in 1066. Soon afterwards land hungry Norman adventurers started to appear on the Welsh border and there followed a long period of invasion, settlement and war, characterised by castle building. Wales has more castles per square mile (over 400) than anywhere in the world. It also has the oldest stone-built medieval castle in Britain (Chepstow) and the last great medieval castle to be built in Britain (Raglan). Caerphilly castle is one of the largest in Britain and the castles of Edward I in North Wales are generally regarded as the best examples of late medieval castle building in the world (many have World Heritage Status). 

The last native Welsh prince, Llewellyn ap Gruffudd, was killed by the English in 1282. Edward I made his eldest son the first English Prince of Wales, starting a tradition that continues today. Despite the Edwardian Conquest of Wales in the 1280s, the Welsh language and culture survived and just over a century later the revolt of Owain Glyndwr showed that the desire for Welsh independence was still strong in Wales. Glyndwr established Wales’ first Parliament and was widely acclaimed as the true King of Wales. 

During the Wars of the Roses, the Tudor family came to prominence and ultimately came to be King’s of England. Henry Tudor (the first Tudor king) was born in Wales and the Tudor name is a very old Welsh one. Henry Tudor used his Welsh roots to claim that he was the true king from an ancient British line. He even called his first son Arthur and used the old Arthurian legends to imply that he was the true ‘son of destiny’ returned to unite Britain once more. 

During the reign of Elizabeth I, the bible was translated into Welsh (an event that proved to be of great importance in the survival of the Welsh language).

Wales was at the forefront of the Industrial Revolution. It had the necessary raw materials to ensure that South Wales was to became the world’s greatest exporter of iron and coal and, similarly, North Wales was said to be able to ‘roof the world’ with the huge amount of slate mined there during the nineteenth century. 

Dragon Tours aims to share Wales’ incredible history with you and show you how it has shaped the culture of modern Wales. 

Wales is a small country but has an incredibly varied landscape, with rolling hills, beautiful coastline and beaches and rugged mountains. Wales has three National Parks and a number of Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty. These regions are protected and offer wonderful opportunities for outdoor pursuits such as walking, pony trekking, canoeing, fishing and sailing. 

There are wonderful opportunities for a whole range of activities that can be enjoyed in Wales. Dragon Tours can arrange the following as part of your tour: 

* Walking * Golf * Pony Trekking * Canoeing *

* Sailing * Climbing * Fishing * Quad Biking * Mountain Biking *

There are also many special events that occur in Wales throughout the year. Why not combine a visit to one of the following events with your visit to Wales:

The National Eisteddfod (August) 

The International Musical Eisteddfod, Llangollen (July)  

Brecon Jazz Festival (August) 

Abergavenny Food Festival (September) 

Hay Festival of Literature (May/June)  

The Green Man Festival (August)

Visit Wales Promotional Video 2014:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c5mHrWGajIU





* Dragon Tours - Tour Wales with Dragon Tours - Welsh Guided Tours - Visit Wales! * 

* Dragon Tours - Tour Wales with Dragon Tours - Welsh Guided Tours - Visit Wales! *