USK, an attractive town to visit at any time of the year, is at its very best in summer, when the streets are radiant with colourful flower arrangements in window boxes, flower beds and hanging baskets.

In recent years the town has been successful in many competitions, and has been voted Best Kept Small Town in Wales on a number of occasions.

The privately-owned 12th century castle of the De Clares and the Earls of March overlooks the main street.

Set in beautiful rural surroundings, Usk College of Agriculture is often used during the summer vacation by outside organisations. Its lecture theatre and classroom facilities with visual aids are available at college and group rates.

Peaceful Twyn Square, with its flower beds, ornate town clock, and attractive old inns, is typical of this easy-going little town, which for its size is very well blessed with fine buildings.

Usk is famous as a salmon fishing centre, ideally located as it is between castle and riverside among trees and meadows.

A regular winner in such competitions as Wales in Bloom and Beautiful Britain in Bloom, the town offers a fine choice of restaurants offering continental cuisine, and inns full of character serving more traditional fare.

Its situation, bang in the centre of Gwent, makes it an ideal base for exploring the surrounding area.

Gwent Rural Life Museum, housed in The Malt Barn, New Market Street, is a private collection run by the Rural Crafts Preservation Society on a voluntary basis.

The museum started in Llanvapley, near Abergavenny, in 1966, but moved to Usk in 1981 when Monmouth borough council offered the Society the Malt Barn, which probably served as a storage barn for the Maltster's House next door, to which it was once attached.

The main building is dominated by two wagons, one being a fine example of the Monmouthshire wagon in traditional livery of Venetian Red and Prussian Blue. It was built at the Onen, Monmouth. The other is the Glamorgan wagon, which carried the chattels of a local farming family in Gwent at the beginning of the century.

The Vale of Usk offers a wide range of outdoor leisure pursuits and activity holidays. A few miles out of Usk is the quiet hamlet of Gwernesney, in a beautiful area of low-lying countryside, perfect for gliding. It provides a base for the South Wales Gliding Club. Day flights or weekly flying holidays can be arranged with tuition.

The Usk Valley is exceptionally beautiful and makes an ideal base for a walking holiday. Informal leisurely walks, with members of the Gwent Countryside Warden Service as guides, are particularly suitable for family groups.