TWO Monmouthshire towns have been listed in a national newspaper as among the best market towns to visit.

Chepstow and Monmouth made the list in the Guardian, and with people looking to holiday closer to home this year, such national acclaim is likely to be a boost for locals.

Monmouth, described as "a busy market town in the ridiculously picturesque lower part of the Wye valley, is a haven for those with a love of the outdoors.

Points of interest mentioned in the Guardian run-down are the ruins of Monmouth Castle (free and open to wander into) and, a little way upriver, the triple-arched Monnow Bridge, the last remaining medieval fortified bridge in the UK, with its gate tower still intact.


The Kymin, a white tower built atop a nearby hill in 1794 is described in the list as "a prototype man shed for nobles".

Now that non-essential shops are open again, potential visitors to the town can browse the many independents here.

Chepstow also gets the nod in the Guardian list and, as is often the way, the first point of note is that it is not only worthy visiting for the famous racecourse.

Walking in the Lower Wye valley and a glut of historic attractions mean there’s loads to do.

Outdoor events may be scaled back somewhat this year, but that does not mean that there isn't plenty to fill your time in Chepstow.

Chepstow Castle (currently free but book ahead) is most visitors’ first port of call, but the Guardian also made mention of the Dewstow Gardens and Grottoes (adult £7.50, child from £2.50, book ahead), "a moss-dripping, fern-wafting verdant wonderland of tunnels and caves and tropical planting" and the "graceful Gothic ruin of Tintern Abbey" (free, book ahead).

Also included in the Guardian's list are places as far flung as Linlithgow and Forres in Scotland.

Closer to home, Machynlleth is the only other Welsh town to make the list.

While Coleraine is included as the only entry from Northern Ireland.