Lodge on a Lake
Cefn Mably Lakes, Cefn Mably, Cardiff
There’s something comically appropriate about wallowing in a hot tub at Cefn Mably Lakes. It’s as if, when dusk comes and the day-visitors have gone home, you are joining the fish in their peaceful, watery solitude. Gaze at the sky, bask in the greenery of your surroundings and watch the last thin wisps of smoke from your barbecue as they drift like ripples through the air. Life lodging by the lake at Cefn Mably is good. Be you man or fish, it’s a perfectly pleasant place to be.
Just 15 minute’s drive from Cardiff city centre, it’s tough to believe such a scene could be right on the edge of busy, urban environs. The brown tourist signs that lead you down the final country lanes to Cefn Mably Lakes are like pointers into a rural hideaway; a greening wilderness that’s shielded from the city.
Once there, the eight different lakes – half for course fishing and half for carp – spread across the vast 35-acre space, with the glamping lodges situated beside the Spring Lake in a quiet corner. Each has an outside deck and hot tub, with views across the water, while, inside, the wooden lodges have a kitchen area, double bed and fully en-suite facilities. All have a parking space directly alongside and have their own, secluded location along the lakeshore.
If you’re a keen fisher then the Osprey Cabin is the pick of the bunch – you can cast directly from your deck – while those who stay in the Kingfisher Cabin are permitted to fish on the other lakes instead. If you’re not angling to go angling, meanwhile, then the Heron Cabin has the most secluded location (best for birdwatchers) and opportunities still abound in the immediate surroundings. You can walk past hedgerows thick with blackberries and along the local footpaths to the nearest pub, one mile away, or hop in the car to visit Caerphilly Castle or the beaches of Cardiff Bay. Oh, and did we mention that the city is right on the doorstep?