Centre for Alternative Technology

Centre for Alternative Technology

Looking for places to visit in north Wales? 

Are you looking for things to do in north Wales? Perhaps you're visiting Snowdonia National Park and you're looking for special places to visit in north Wales during the holidays with your family?

We think we have just the thing...

The Centre for Alternative Technology (otherwise known as CAT) has one main aim - to “inspire, inform and enable humanity to respond to the climate and biodiversity emergency”.

They couldn’t have chosen any better location to do just that than Llwyngwern Quarry. Nestled in mid Wales on the bottom edge of Snowdonia National Park in the stunning UNESCO Dyfi Biosphere in Mid Wales, not much more than an hour's drive from Pwllheli, this may just be the beautiful family day out in Wales you've been looking for.

Plus, at just £9.50 for an adult ticket and £4.50 for a child, this is an ideal budget family outing - you can even bring your own picnic to enjoy on the grounds. 

The beginnings of The Centre for Alternative Technology

In the rising hills and dipping valleys of Machynlleth (sounds like muh-kuhnth-leth), Llwyngwern Quarry was once a prominent slate producer in Mid Wales before being abandoned in the 1950s.

Then in 1973, a bunch of enthusiastic volunteers came along to set up an off-grid community experimenting with alternative methods of living.

We can all admit it, there have been times when we’ve all wanted to escape the modern world – live in the woods where your only worries are of squirrels pinching hazelnuts from your larder. To be surrounded by wilderness in peace and quiet.

That notion of leaving the world behind and living in tandem with the environment will always be at the heart of CAT.

Discover it yourself as you wander along woodland trails and through their organic garden.

Wildlife and woodland paths in Snowdonia

"Discover a hidden world, packed full of working examples of renewable energy, beautiful organic gardens, experimental green buildings and sustainably managed woodland habitats"

Wandering through the woodlands, keep an eye out for yellowhammers, red kites, and peregrine falcons gliding through the sky.

Take the kids along and let them burn off some energy along the Quarry Trail.

You’ll head up above the Visitor Centre to discover CAT’s sustainable off-grid water systems and be rewarded by expansive views across Snowdonia National Park.

With the wildlife buzzing around you and the treetops rolling away like a green sea, the value of CAT really comes into focus.

The earth is home to more species than most of us could imagine and after a visit to CAT, that becomes all the more clear.

An organic bite to eat

Bring a picnic and re-energise while wandering through the woodland or take a seat at their café and browse their fully vegetarian and vegan menu.

A lot of the produce they use comes from the very garden you were strolling through moments before.

Stop off at the shop on your way out to pick up some fantastic eco-friendly gifts for a loved one.

They’ll feel just as inspired as you to live more sustainably when they see the easy swaps to be made.

SY20 9AZ
  • Free parking
  • Toilets
  • Café - much of the fruit and veg grown on the visitor circuit and in the two-acre field is turned into delicious dishes by the talented chefs in this vegetarian café. Enjoy tasty salads, tender greens, protein-packed pulses, and even courgette cake, all made with fresh produce grown on the CAT site
  • Adventure playground is just a short walk from the café
  • Quarry Trail - it's a manageable and well-maintained footpath, which takes visitors up into the hills surrounding CAT through beautiful woodland to unlock stunning views of the surrounding area. We recommend suitable clothing and footwear

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