This is a brilliant experience to share with children (aged seven and over) offering exhilarating fun and physical challenges via climbs that start at the super-easy and graduate to the more demanding. Taster sessions (90 minutes to have a go with a coaching instructor including equipment hire) cost £10 per person, and then sessions (adults £7 and juniors £5) can be booked to suit.

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There is nothing children like more than a splash and a swim and in Bridgend County we have five public pools (Bridgend, Maesteg, Pencoed, Pyle and Ynysawdre) where an adult and two youngsters can enjoy a swim for under a fiver (during free swimming sessions) with junior prices applied at other times.

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Bridgend has launched the fabulous Sports Stars programme which gives your children the chance to learn up to 15 new sports skills (from footie to rugby, cheerleading to gymnastics). There’s a preschool timetable throughout the day, and after-school and weekend activities for older children.

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Bridgend Life Centre, Angel Street, Bridgend CF31 4AH Youngsters can explore their sense of adventure by sliding, balancing and climbing across three floors of wobbly bridges, ball ponds and squashy obstacles.

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The perfect stop-off with young children, your local library is a treasure trove of magical adventures you can share via a book. The library at Bridgend Life Centre organises a baby bounce and rhyme session every Monday from 11–12 and story times every Saturday 2.15–3. Plus a film club and reading group for children aged from seven.

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  Rediscover the joy of train travel through the eyes of your kids by heading off on a train from Bridgend. An off-peak return day trip to Cardiff, for example, (less than half an hour each way and around £12 for one adult and two children over five – under fives go free) can be turned into a day’s adventure.

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The Odeon Cinema at the McArthurGlen Shopping Centre offers an Odeon Family ticket (between £20 and £25 for four), Odeon Kids (special screenings on Saturday and Sunday mornings where you pay £10 for four £2.50 tickets) and a monthly Odeon Newbies (especially for new parents or carers – take the baby along).

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Merthyr Mawr, Vale of Glamorgan After a scenic drive past thatched cottages, blow the cobwebs away with a two-mile walk to the sea, or sledge down the amazing dunes (including one of the largest dunes in Europe) and picnic on the sand. If you’re lucky, you might even spot the Welsh rugby team training or see a movie being filmed.

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Fountain Road, Tondu CF32 0EH. Tel: 01656 724100 A fantastic place to go cycling or walking, see wildflowers and watch birds in woodlands, wetlands and grasslands. There are some charged facilities. For example you can sample the refreshments in the coffee shop, rent an Explorer Backpack from the Visitor Centre, make a bird-box or sign up for activities such as pond-dipping and bug-hunting.

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St. Bride's Major, CF32 0TF Although the beach is officially called Dunraven Bay, the locals in this county call it Southerndown beach. Whatever you call it, the views will blow your mind.

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Ton Kenfig, Bridgend CF33 4PT. Tel: 01656 743386 Learn to identify birds and plants with the help of the reserve’s rangers and interpretation boards, spot rare orchids and wander round Glamorgan’s largest lake at this stunning Site of Special Scientific Interest.

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Coity, Bridgend CF35 6BH Cross the bridge that spans the dry moat and picnic amid the impressive ruins. Walk in the footsteps of Owain Glyn Dŵr’s besieging army, and see if you can spot which parts of the site date from the twelfth century and which from the fifteenth.

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Bridgend, CF35 5BW Touch hands with the past at this castle-like Norman church which has remained in use for nearly 900 years. Once garrisoned by soldiers and tended by monks, it features a fortified curtain wall, a gatehouse and castellations.

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