Tourism in Mumbles hoping for a good summer.
Written by: Tim Morizet
Swansea might never be able to compete with Cardiff when it comes to the city break market tourism, as Cardiff benefits greatly from events held all year around at the Principality Stadium and Motorpoint Arena. But Swansea, according to the local tourism office, can offer a combination of award winning beaches with Gower being within close proximity of the coastal fishing village of Mumbles and the City of Swansea.
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"Visitor can have a short break, where they can surf on Rhossili Bay, go boutique shopping in Mumbles and enjoy the lively City and Waterfront area all in one visit."
Boutique shopping in Mumbles? Not so much at the moment, local shopkeepers moan: We've been promised so many things over the past few years, a redevelopment of the seafront and a revamp of Mumbles Pier, so far, nothing happened. Tourists are staying away."
Pier-owning company Ameco received the outline planning consent in 2011 and was planning on building 27 apartments on the foreshore, and a new hotel on the headland. After putting the long dispute about the quarry rock face behind in 2015, the company re-applied for planning permission and a two-year extension to get the project running.
"The Hotel industry in Swansea is doing well. Unfortunately, quite a few smaller B&B's closed down in Mumbles. The Mumbles Mile has gone as well," General Manager at Morgans Hotel, Mark Gallagher agrees.
Once famous for its wild seafront pub crawl, known as the Mumbles Mile, the nightlife in Mumbles has become significantly more calm in recent years.
The £5.5m Oyster Wharf scheme from developer Nextcolour is supposed to change that. The developer is planning on turning the amusement arcade and Art Deco cinema at Mumbles into a fresh and new restaurant and retail scheme. The construction works started a few months ago.
A local restaurant owner added: "We agree and support the proposed re-use of this important Mumbles site, it will assure jobs, and a fresh drive to respected high street name that has become more or less a neglected area."
With Swansea's City Centre becoming more and more popular for tourists due to the introduction of new restaurants and bars, many local Mumbles restaurant and cafe owners are fighting for their survival.
"What we need is a good summer, more parking, better public transportation and a fresh spirit in town."
Let's hope for the best.
Impressive. 4.50 million visitors welcomed in Swansea last year!
Written by: Tim Morizet
Only a few days ago, all over Swansea Bay, the first banners popped up introducing its citizens to a long list of upcoming events during summer 2016.
Popular events such as the Wales National Air Show, taking place from July 2 to July 3, have invited over 4.50 million visitors to Swansea in 2015. The free Air Show alone is attracting thousands of visitors every year from all parts of the UK to Swansea. Over 170,000 people visited last year’s event, and the Council plans to promote this as an annual highlight, due to its success.
But even earlier this summer, the International Jazz Festival with its free workshops and concerts, from June 17 to June 19, will welcome visitors from the United Kingdom and artists from all over the world into a large Jazz area, with several stages and areas around the city.
Mark Gallagher, General Manager, at Morgans Hotel in Swansea said: ‘Events such as the Manic Street Preachers concert at the Liberty Stadium, the Jazz festival and the Rugby show a positive effect on the tourism in Swansea. Our hotel is fully booked for all of these events.’
But what attracts people to Swansea?
There are quite a few highlights in the Swansea area according to Tonia Thomas, tourism officer at the City and County of Swansea: "Traditionally the Gower and Mumbles, but increasingly the City Centre, and Rural Swansea, with new investments and improvements to areas such as Penllergaer Woods."
"The Gower Peninsula, an ‘Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty’ (AONB), described as ‘The most beautiful place on earth’ by visitors on TripAdvisor offers a wide range of beaches, cliffs, woodlands and beautiful medieval churches and castles.
Rhossili Bay Beach offers 3 miles of sand and coastline, as well as surfing opportunities and was awarded 9th best beach in the world by the TripAdvisors Travellers’ Choice.
Wales Peninsula #wales #gowerpeninsula #rhosilli #bay #beach #sheep #bah #water #sea #coast #scenic #scenary #ocean #sand #beachlovers #grass #green #countryside #mountains #wind #breeze #view #landscape #landscapephotography #photography #nature #naturephotography #beautiful 💚
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General Manager at Morgans Hotel, Mark Gallagher, predicts a bright future for Swansea's tourism industry: "I'm looking forward to the future developments around Swansea, especially the 3,500-seat arena and the aquarium. They will invite new tourist to a new and unrecognisable Swansea"
Swansea City and Council are planning to transform the City Centre so it will be ‘unrecognisable’ by 2020. Key features of the development include:
- 3,500-seat arena hosting exhibitions, concerts, and conferences
- New parking areas
- The tallest residential building in Wales
- New restaurant and bar quarter
- Swansea's first aquqrium
- State-of-the-art cinema
- Revamped public square
Further planned is the Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon, a power plant producing energy for more than 155,000 households. This development would include expanding the job sector in engineering as well adding an additional tourist attraction, as it will be partly available as a seafront path.
"Are you going to your job everyday so you can survive or are you doing something you enjoy, that gives you life, that fulfills you?"
Written by: Tim Morizet
This week I had the pleasure to talk with self-confessed travel maniac Mikah Meyer, who some of you probably recognise from his blog Travel Beyond Convention.
Born in the United States, Mikah, a professional singer currently based in Washington DC, is planning on visiting all 410 U.S. National Park Units in only 3 years and therefore, would become the sole person to visit all 400+ units of the US National Park System on one contiguous trip.
Mikah Meyer talks about how his traveling passion started, his big upcoming trip and happiness. Here are excerpts from the interview.
You have been traveling quite a bit over the past years. How did that interest start?
Travel was always a big part of our family lifestyle. We never really took lavish, airplane trips or international travel. I never left the country until I was 21. But we did a lot of road trips. We often would drive to and from Florida, which is about a 28-hour drive. So, I grew up, always wanting to travel a bunch, not having really the money to do it. And when I was 19, and my dad passed away, we had our very first road trip planned already for what turned out to be just days after this funeral. So I ended up taking that road trip anyway with my best friend at the time and it was just a perfect time to escape my hometown, which would just remind me of death and a lot of sadness. Hit the road for new wisdoms, new scenery and new people and it was an amazing experience.
So, you are leaving for 3 years now. Breaking a few world records as well.
I’ve been thinking about this since I was 28, because I knew that age 30 would be the first planned epic road trips. So in June 2014, I started thinking about what I wanted to do and remembered the amazing places I saw during my previous trips and I decided that I wanted to see all the National Parks. Once I realised that there are so many, I determined that it would take a little bit longer than one year to reach that goal.
You leaving in a month. Already feeling nervous?
Oh, I’m completely scared! I’m insane, like, I wake up nightly like how crazy I am, and that I can’t believe that I’m actually doing this and all the things that could go wrong.
Many people are currently living for their nine-to-five jobs. For them, traveling is happiness. Do you agree? How do you define happiness for yourself?
There is a wonderful saying. ‘Are you living to work, or working to live?’ Are you going to your job everyday so you can survive or are you doing something you enjoy, that gives you life, that fulfills you? So I think, happiness for me, is not regretting the one life that you get. When I reach 65 or 80, or I don't, I don’t want to regret the way I lived my life. You regret more the chances you don’t take than the ones you do. And happiness for me is knowing that I don’t have to say to myself in 5 years, what if?
There we are - traveling makes you happy. But, you don't need to travel far to experience that tickling in your stomach. Next week's post will take a look behind the tourism industry in Swansea (UK). Until then, listen to the rest of the interview with Mikah below.
Happy 4th International Day of Happiness everyone!
Written by: Tim Morizet
Having been founded in June 2012 by the UN, the first International Day of Happiness was celebrated March 20th in 2013 and has now become a day for people from all parts of the world to celebrate the importance of happiness.
Inspired by the country of Bhutan whose political philosophy measures and prioritises happiness across their population over income, March 20th is the day for us to sit back and think about what makes us happy and take action.
Not only amongst students, we know it's rather unanimous that travel makes us happy. But what exactly about traveling is it that makes us happy? The little things, the main destination? Does it start even before you leave while planning our getaway(s) and you evaluate what to pack?
Travel makes me happy because...
"There are countless adventures waiting for us to be experienced and lived. Travelling doesn't only make you discover the world; it also makes you discover different or new parts of yourself that you couldn't even imagine to exist." Liz
"My worries are left behind." Luca
"It's like an endless journey that always inspires you to look forward to what's next." Christophe
"I love being outdoors, in nature, reconnecting with myself and exploring new areas, cultures, and possibilities." Tammy
Philosopher and author Alain de Botton hit the nail on the head when we wrote: “Travel agents would be wiser to ask us what we hope to change about our lives rather than simply where we wish to go.”
The very idea of travel makes us happy as it offers us the excuse, space, and time to step outside our self-constructed, worn out routine. It provides us with a platform to explore and form an ideal vision we have of ourselves. An ideal version, admiring the awesomeness of Scotland's mountain range from the lofty heights of a hot air balloon at sunset -- divorced from our concerns and anxieties about status, safety and security.
Travel expands the mind and spirit. It is educative and puts us in contact with new ideas and people. It doesn't matter if you're visiting a great city with a vibrant culture or a beautiful countryside. It is the constant resetting of our inner happiness ratio that's forcing affluent travelers to seek for more happiness.
Looking into studies and previous personal experiences, it would seem almost impossible to escape the well-known post-vacation crash. The best antidote to the post-holiday blues probably is to simply: start planning another trip!
So is Mikah Meyer, a professional singer based in Washington DC. He only recently ended his 260 day, 16.400-mile North American road trip. The American is currently finishing up the latest preparations for his newest trip.
Leaving April 29th, Meyer is planning on visiting all 410 U.S. National Park Units within only 3 years. Not only is he becoming the youngest person to visit all 400+ units of the US National Park System. He will also be the sole person to do so on one contiguous trip.
Stay tuned for an exclusive interview with the record-breaker next week when we discuss his upcoming trip and try to find an answer to the question: Does travel really make you happy?