The model for St Fagans Folk Museum just outside the city of Cardiff, was taken from a similar museum in Finland, which provided invaluable help in setting this one up.
The Folk Museum preserves and displays ancient and/or important buildings which are part of Welsh history and heritage, painstakingly taking them apart stone by stone and reconstructing them – together with furniture and furnishings – on site. Cottages, a manor house, school, chapel, shops, farmhouses, a woollen mill, tannery, a Celtic settlement and even a pig sty are just some of the amazing and nostalgic places to visit. There is also a terraced row of 2-up-2-down cottages and their gardens, each progressively decorated through a number of decades of the 20th century and containing items many of us would recognise as having belonged to grandparents or great-grandparents.
The buildings are quite spread out on a beautifully landscaped site, and the choice of which to see can be determined by how far a visitor feels like walking! A site plan and information on wheelchair accessibility can be had from the desk in the museum's excellent exhibition building, which also has a restaurant – though it's a perfect place to take your own picnic. Knowledgeable curators also await in each building to provide information, and they delight in answering questions from children, who are fascinated by beds in cupboards and livestock sharing accommodation! There is ample car parking, and buses run from the city centre. Best of all of course, is that the museum is totally free to visit.