Nestled in the picturesque South East of Wales, Monmouthshire shines with rolling hills, charming market towns, and majestic castles. Boasting a rich heritage coupled with the palpable magic of the Welsh countryside, visitors and residents alike value its tranquility as much as its vibrancy.

In our area guide, we delve into the essence of Monmouthshire, its historic towns such as Monmouth and Abergavenny, and provide practical details about living in the county. We cover everything from history, landmarks, and cultural highlights to transportation, education, and preferred places to reside.

History of Monmouthshire

Monmouthshire has a rich and compelling history dating back to prehistoric times. The Romans' influence is still palpable in the historic town of Caerwent and the strategic fort at Usk. It was in the medieval period when many of its iconic castles were constructed — Raglan, White, and Skenfrith castles each narrate their unique stories. Monmouthshire's industrial past is also notable, especially its role in Britain's iron industry, encapsulated by the awe-inspiring Big Pit National Coal Museum. The county has evolved, yet it continues to honor its heritage, merging past and present seamlessly.


Monmouthshire is a land filled with historic heritage and culturally relevant landmarks. The iconic Raglan Castle, a 15th-century fortress, exemplifies Tudor architecture with its striking hexagonal keep, and Abergavenny's 11th-century castle whispers tales of Norman invasions and fierce battles. Additionally, Tintern Abbey, revered as one of the world's most inspirational ruins, is set against a backdrop of the Wye Valley's stunning natural beauty. These places combine history, architecture, and landscape to offer authentic Welsh experiences.

Landmarks we love

  • St. Mary’s Priory - In the heart of Abergavenny, a place of worship, history, and artisan craftsmanship.

    St. Mary's Priory combines spirituality with awe-inspiring medieval architecture and houses a collection of rare carved wooden sculptures. It's also known for hosting music recitals and food festivals.

  • Chepstow Castle - Riverside medieval beauty in Chepstow.

    Chepstow Castle, a Norman masterpiece, boasts impressive architecture and exquisite views over the Wye River. It's also noted for hosting historical re-enactments.

  • Caerleon Roman Fortress and Baths - At the heart of the town of Caerleon.

    These well-preserved ancient Roman military remnants offer a peek into Britain's Roman period. The interactive museum brings history to life for visitors of all ages.

  • Sugarloaf Mountain - Just North of Abergavenny.

    A gem among the Brecon Beacons, Sugarloaf Mountain presents panoramic views of Monmouthshire's green rolling landscapes. It's a popular spot for hiking and picnics.

  • Caldicot Castle - In the Parc Castle Grounds, Caldicot.

    This Norman-era castle, surrounded by picturesque gardens, is not just a window to the past but also a venue for numerous cultural events and festivals.

Top 10 things to do in Monmouthshire

  • Visit Abergavenny market - Located in the town center.

    Famed for its colorful array of stalls, Abergavenny market has been an integral part of the town's life for centuries. From fresh produce to craft items, the market promises variety and quality.

  • Go hiking in the Brecon Beacons - North of Monmouthshire.

    As part of the Brecon Beacons National Park, this area offers thrilling outdoor adventures like hiking, walking, and even exploring caves.

  • Wine Tasting at Ancre Hill Vineyard - Close to Monmouth town.

    The award-winning Ancre Hill Vineyard offers an opportunity to taste some exquisite local Welsh wines.

  • Cycling along the Monmouthshire and Brecon Canal - Runs through the county.

    This peaceful waterway offers beautiful cycling routes showcasing stunning scenery and brimming wildlife.

  • Explore The Kymin - On a hill overlooking Monmouth.

    This historic picnic site and viewpoint on a hilltop: The Kymin, offers breath-taking views of the Wye Valley and the town of Monmouth. It’s a great spot for an outdoor picnic.

  • Attend the Abergavenny Food Festival - In Abergavenny.

    A culinary delight festival with a variety of stalls brimming with local and international delicacies, demonstrations by top chefs, and a cheerful festive spirit.

  • Visit the Big Pit National Coal Museum - On the hills above the town of Blaenavon.

    Immerse yourself in the industrial heritage of Wales by going underground into a real coal mine, accompanied by former pit workers as guides.

  • Enjoy Outdoor Activities at Wye Valley and Forest Of Dean.

    An Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty offering a myriad of outdoor activities from abseiling, rock-climbing, canoeing to wildlife watching.

  • Visit the Shire Hall in Monmouth - In Agincourt Square, Monmouth.

    Rich in history, it hosted one of the most famous treason trials. Now serving as a museum, it also hosts a wide variety of community events.

  • Visit the Nelson Museum - In Monmouth.

    This museum devoted to Admiral Horatio Nelson, houses an impressive collection of memorabilia associated with Britain's greatest naval hero.

Our recommended areas to live in Monmouthshire

  • Monmouth - On the confluence of the Wye, Monnow, and Trothy rivers.

    Monmouth is a charming town that beautifully balances country living with urban amenities. Its community-focused culture, friendly neighborhoods, and top-quality schools make it an ideal place for families.

  • Abergavenny - On the River Usk.

    Known as the 'Gateway to Wales', Abergavenny offers a rich cultural life and some of the most spectacular landscape views. The town is highly sought after for its gastronomic scene - home to Michelin-starred restaurants and famous food festivals.

  • Usk - In the heart of Monmouthshire.

    Usk offers a peaceful lifestyle in a beautiful town known for its floral displays. For families, highly rated schools, sports facilities, and a strong community spirit make it an attractive location.

  • Caldicot - In the southeast of Monmouthshire.

    Caldicot is popular among commuters due to its proximity to Bristol and Cardiff. Home to Caldicot Castle and country park, it offers a combination of rural beauty and city conveniences.

  • Chepstow - At the southernmost edge of Monmouthshire.

    Chepstow is ideal for those looking for a diverse community with easy access to both the natural beauty of the Severn Estuary and city amenities of nearby Bristol and Cardiff.

Best schools in Monmouthshire

Monmouthshire boasts some of the best schools in Wales. Monmouth's Haberdashers' schools, the Boys' School and Monmouth School for Girls, are renowned independent schools that boast exceptional academic results. The co-educational Monmouth Comprehensive School is highly regarded, as is King Henry VIII School in Abergavenny, known for its strong academic and sports programs.

For primary education, Overmonnow Primary School in Monmouth and Cantref in Abergavenny are among the best. There's also the special Usk Primary School, hailed for its nurturing environment and pupil development. Chepstow School is well-respected for its secondary education, combining academic success with a strong pastoral ethos. The county is also home to several Welsh language schools, including Ysgol Gyfun Gwynllyw, where pupils are skilled in both English and Welsh. Monmouthshire's robust education system caters to every child's needs and aspirations.

Transport links in Monmouthshire

The transportation network in Monmouthshire is robust, making it easy to get around the county and to nearby cities. Major highways like the M4 and M50 provide excellent road access to Cardiff, Bristol, and the Midlands. For residents seeking to travel further afield, Bristol and Cardiff airports are under an hour's drive away.

Monmouthshire's rail services, offered from stations in Chepstow, Caldicot, and Abergavenny, provide convenient links to larger cities. Trains from these stations can whisk you into central Cardiff or across the border to Bristol and beyond. Additionally, Monmouthshire’s scenic countryside is easily explored via the network of local buses connecting towns and villages within the county.

In conclusion, Monmouthshire offers a beautiful blend of rural tranquility and lively market towns. It's a place where you can connect with history, immerse yourself in a rich culture, and embrace the great outdoors. Living here means appreciating the charm of Welsh life, the warmth of the people, and the peace of enchanting scenery. Excellent education and transport links further solidify Monmouthshire as a charming and convenient place to live. This county offers a quality of living that is truly hard to match.

Buy A Home

With thousands of homes for sale, find your RealMove today.

Buy A Home in Monmouthshire

Rent A Home

With thousands of homes for Rent, find your RealMove today.

Rent A Home in Monmouthshire

Create alerts and save properties & searches

We've created a new tool to help you easily find the areas that match your budget and needs.

Creat an Account


Whether you're looking to buy your dream home, rent your very first apartment or want home design inspiration, we have everything you’re looking for just one click away.

Latest property news

Everything you need to know about the housing market, explained by our experts.

Subscribe for Newsletter

We've created a new tool to help you easily find the areas that match your budget and needs.