Caerleon - the “fortress of the Legion” - was one of the most important military sites in Britain under the Roman Empire. It was the home of the 2nd Augustan Legion, housing 5,000 soldiers and horsemen, with an amphitheatre, baths, shops and temples.
Today Caerleon is an attractive historic town with a selection of pubs, restaurants and tea rooms. You can find more information on Caerleon via the links below:
Aspects of Roman history are brought to life at the imaginatively displayed Fortress Baths, (opens new website) once a giant 'leisure centre' with heated changing rooms, swimming pool, huge gymnasium and baths halls.
The National Roman Legion Museum (opens new website) graphically portrays the daily life of the garrison with life size models and an exciting ‘hands on’ area for children. For more information about the Romans at Caerleon, including a view of the fortress in 3D and explanatory videos on key locations and structures, see the Digital Roman Caerleon Trail (opens new website) where you can experience a walk through time. Download the trail leaflet in two sections here and here
Lost Roman Port found
Dig at Roman Caerleon –
Thursday 4 August – Thursday 1 September 2011
In the summer of 2011, a team of volunteers and academics from Cardiff University came to Caerleon, and found what they had been hoping for; a Roman Port, one of only two in Britain.
For more information on how the summer’s dig went, and the discoveries which were made, see the Cardiff University web page which also links to the dig blog.
Amphitheatre and barracks
The amphitheatre and barracks – currently the only Roman barracks block visible in Europe – are open free to the public all year, with the exception of occasional events. Please contact the Tourist Information Centre for further information about what’s on.
The Legend of King Arthur
Legend has it that Caerleon was the first of King Arthur’s Courts, the Amphitheatre allegedly being the site of the famous Round Table.
You can learn more about the Arthurian literature of Geoffrey of Monmouth and other early Welsh writers, and how the legend developed, on the Caerleon Net website.
You can also journey on a quest through South East Wales that challenges you to discover where the Legend of King Arthur was born.
For more information about the trail from Caerleon, up to the Black Mountains and on to the wonders of the Wye Valley, and for a downloadable version of the trail leaflet, go to the Home of the Legend of King Arthur website
The Ffwrrwm Arts and Crafts Centre has several craft shops, a tea-room and restaurant, art gallery and sculpture garden.
How to get there;
By train – as far as Newport city centre, and onwards via bus, bike or on foot;
By bus – from Newport city centre bus station, services 27,28 and 28B
By bike / on foot – on the NCN route 88 from Newport city centre
By car – coming from the West, take Jct 26 from the M4, follow brown signs
- coming from the East, take Jct 25 from the M4, follow brown signs
Tourist Information Centre5 High Street
Tel: +44 (0)1633 422656