If we aren’t working at 100 miles per hour, we are running around being everything other than ourselves. STOP.
For just 30 minutes take yourself away to a different world, one of friends, warm welcomes, hot beverages and deliciously naughty sweet treat .
Over the past 10 years the coffee shop has reinvented itself to times gone by, when everyone had a few minutes every day to catch up with friends and family over a cup of tea. Especially in war times when ladies gathered in support of each other in difficult, emotional and financial times. Nothing soothed the nerves like a sweet cup of tea, accompanied by a large slice of homemade victoria sponge, or so it was told.
It was frowned upon for women to be seen in working men’s clubs in the Valleys of Wales and even after the 2nd World war men left the mines after a long day and headed down the pub for a few beers with their mates.
As habits of having a swift pint or a catch up glass of wine after work dwindle, more and more people are heading to the coffee shops either mid morning during a shopping spree or as a pre arranged meeting.
In the 1980s the classic cappuccino started to become more popular in America and before long, chains of coffee shops started popping up all over our UK high streets. Certain larger chains have a year on year growth and are opening many new outlets every week.
However there is nothing like finding a secret hide away with a beautiful view for a catch up with friends.
Take the beautiful Llandegfedd Reservoir, situated just outside Cwmbran. Having recently been voted best view in Wales for a coffee, their brand new café is located on the second floor of their new building. With floor to ceiling windows, whether it be a stunning sunny day or a miserable wet day, there is no doubting that the view is incredible . Serving homemade cakes and a selection of snacks and hot meals it truly is secret hide away.
If you find your self out shopping in Abergavenny, why not try out one of the many local coffee shops tucked away down the cobbled streets of this delightful old welsh town. For the Love of Cakes is gem of a find. Walking from the main shopping area in the town centre to Frogmore Street you will find this shop. Don’t be intimidated by its coziness, you will receive a hugely warm welcome from the owners. With table clothes on the table and beautiful decoration the homemade cakes are not to be missed. Just take a look at the amazing reviews they have had on trip advisor.
Over in Bleanavon after visiting many of the heritage attractions step up the hill to 1860 . A café promoting healthy eating . Here the owners are proud to say that they not only make all their food but that they source many of their ingredients locally. Hang out in the large comfy sofa in the window with a mug of your favourite locally sourced coffee and watch the world go by and maybe indulge in a piece of chocolate cake supplied by a local baker. Mouth watering.
On a Sunday afternoon while the Autumn winter sun glistens in the sky, just about warming the earth below. The leaves are falling , making for a crunchy carpet under foot. its time to buy your pumpkins for Halloween and your bulbs for planting.
A stroll around a garden centre can be a chilly affair, so why not reward yourself with a comforting hot chocolate and a homemade scone with Jam in. This is of course the Secret Garden just outside Pontypool and tucked away behind the main green house you’ll find Sallys Tea Rooms. The cooking of fresh cakes and food take places in front of your eyes, very difficult to resist. There is also a covered balcony which has the most fantastic view over the Usk Valley.
Alternatively why not wrap up and don your wellies and take a stroll along the canal that runs from Newport to Pontypool . At Goytre Wharf you’ll discover the Goytre Wharf café . Recently renovated and offering many delightful treats and a wide range of lunchtime snacks. Theres even a kiddies corner to keep your little ones occupied giving you 5 minutes to yourself.
We are all guilty of running around being busy, life these days is so much faster. So next time you find yourself rushing a round, take 5 minutes, stop, and treat yourself to a coffee and cake in one of our many little Welsh gems . Happy sipping .