Blaenafon Ironworks
Blaenafon Ironworks
4.5
Points of Interest & Landmarks
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Monday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
About
In 1789 Blaenafon Ironworks first harnessed the power of steam to blow air into its huge blast furnaces. The ruined furnaces are still visible today alongside the impressive remains of the foundry, cast house and water balance tower that raised wagons 80 feet into the air. But it would have been nothing without its workers. Explore their authentically furnished cottages and the recreated ‘truck shop’ where they spent their meagre wages. Their story, told through cutting-edge interpretation, lies at the heart of an industrial landscape so unique it’s been made a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The displayed opening times are our general pattern. Please check the Cadw website for unexpected closures, opening times, events, and site facilities.
Suggest edits to improve what we show.
Improve this listing
What is Travellers’ Choice?
Tripadvisor gives a Travellers’ Choice award to accommodations, attractions and restaurants that consistently earn great reviews from travellers and are ranked within the top 10% of properties on Tripadvisor.
Revenue impacts the experiences featured on this page, learn more.

Top ways to experience nearby attractions

See what travellers are saying
  • Ernie H
    Cardiff, United Kingdom2,115 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Industrial Heritage
    Car Parking, which is free, available across the road from the site. Entrance fee £6-90 for adults. Site consists of the industrial, in the form of the remaining buildings for iron production and the square of homes. These houses where lived in until 1971. Plenty of information available to gain an understanding of the process and the buildings on the site. We were lucky to have fantastic weather so wandered over all the site. There are picnic tables dotted about so take a packed lunch as there is no food provision available. Surprised how much I remembered from my O levels on the Industrial Revolution (Bessemer's Convertor etc)! The house layout over time (1769 - 1967) was interesting.
    Visited September 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 8 September 2023
  • LordCadwell
    Maidenhead, United Kingdom629 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Feel the heat!
    Unassuming from the car park but persevere - the site opens out into a wonderfully derelict collection of blast furnaces, calcining kilns, chimneys, cottages with a birds eye view from the top of the water balance lift. Welcoming staff and a very well executed audiovisual presentation. A great sense of the realities of life and work in the 19th century.
    Visited September 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 26 September 2023
  • Stephanie-Jayne G
    18 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Informative day out
    We visited the site for a little family day out and it was definitely worth the trip. There was a very friendly gentleman where we purchased our tickets who enthusiastically told us all about the history of the area and showed us around the site. Everything was well maintained and we were very impressed with the little houses the workers would have lived in while working. The staff in the shop were also very accommodating and welcoming.
    Visited February 2024
    Travelled with family
    Written 18 February 2024
  • Benfar6531
    London, United Kingdom91 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Well worth a visit
    We enjoyed our visit to the Ironworks (which, as English Heritage members, was free). In particular, we found the workers cottages fascinating; they took us on a journey from when the houses were first built (c1790) to when the final tenants left (late 1960s). Well worth a visit.
    Visited May 2024
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 15 May 2024
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as waiting time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

We perform checks on reviews.
Tripadvisor’s approach to reviews
Before posting, each Tripadvisor review goes through an automated tracking system, which collects information, answering the following questions: how, what, where and when. If the system detects something that potentially contradicts our community guidelines, the review is not published.
When the system detects a problem, a review may be automatically rejected, sent to the reviewer for validation, or manually reviewed by our team of content specialists, who work 24/7 to maintain the quality of the reviews on our site.
Our team checks each review posted on the site disputed by our community as not meeting our community guidelines.
Learn more about our review moderation.
4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles427 reviews
Excellent
284
Very good
121
Average
19
Poor
2
Terrible
1

Benfar6531
London, UK91 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2024 • Couples
We enjoyed our visit to the Ironworks (which, as English Heritage members, was free). In particular, we found the workers cottages fascinating; they took us on a journey from when the houses were first built (c1790) to when the final tenants left (late 1960s).

Well worth a visit.
Written 15 May 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Liss
Abingdon, UK4 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2024 • Family
The ironworks is a historical site that has been preserved and exhibited with cottages showing how people have lived through the centuries. We visited with a large family group in quite damp weather and it was quite pretty, and most of the exhiits were interesting. Certainly the volunteer was very friendly and knew a great deal about the site and the iron and steel industries in the area.

I had checked accessibility information before our visit as I am a wheelchair user, and the Cadw site suggested it should be relatively accessible. I found this to not be true, most of the site is accessed via a very steep incline, including the cobbled path to the main entrance. (there is a gateway you can be dropped off at and ring a bell to be let in but there was a car parked in it when we drove there)
The incline is surfaced with a drainable grid that has been left to moss over, beautiful, lovely and green, but incredibly slippy, and very dangerous for chairs in the wet, I slid back down what the Cadw site describes as a 'small incline' from the cottages and waited for my family under cover in one of the old blast furnace buildings while they went up top to see the rest.

The cottages themselves are interesting, though a lot of it is corned off, meaning even if I could get my chair in there over the step I couldn't turn the chair round to look at anything in them, I ended up giving up and leaving the chair several times just to see something. If you are not ambulatory, there really isn't much to see. Most of the later cottages have a second floor too. The bits I did see of the later cottages reminded me very strongly of my grandparent's homes.
The museum/model room would have been nice to see, but despite there being no reason why there couldn't be a ramp into it, it was still accessed via step. So I left that out as I couldn't leave my chair in the rain.

The rest of the site on the lower level is surfaces largely in uneven gravel, strewn with quite chunky rocks. There's no real reason for this, I'm not sure it adds to the authenticity of the site, and I got a it stuck with wheels spinning a couple of times.

There is a cool model of the site how it used to look, made of iron in the center of the forecourt, its quite tall though, so I had to stand to make out most of the detail.

I know most of my family enjoyed their visit, and we really can't fault the staff at all, my husband and I were given free entry under Cadw's disability policy, so we were very grateful for that, had I paid, I would have been quite disappointed about everything I had missed.
Written 20 March 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Stephanie-Jayne G
Cardiff, United Kingdom18 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2024 • Family
We visited the site for a little family day out and it was definitely worth the trip. There was a very friendly gentleman where we purchased our tickets who enthusiastically told us all about the history of the area and showed us around the site.

Everything was well maintained and we were very impressed with the little houses the workers would have lived in while working. The staff in the shop were also very accommodating and welcoming.
Written 18 February 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

LordCadwell
Maidenhead, UK629 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2023 • Family
Unassuming from the car park but persevere - the site opens out into a wonderfully derelict collection of blast furnaces, calcining kilns, chimneys, cottages with a birds eye view from the top of the water balance lift. Welcoming staff and a very well executed audiovisual presentation. A great sense of the realities of life and work in the 19th century.
Written 26 September 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Ernie H
Cardiff, UK2,115 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2023 • Couples
Car Parking, which is free, available across the road from the site. Entrance fee £6-90 for adults. Site consists of the industrial, in the form of the remaining buildings for iron production and the square of homes. These houses where lived in until 1971. Plenty of information available to gain an understanding of the process and the buildings on the site. We were lucky to have fantastic weather so wandered over all the site. There are picnic tables dotted about so take a packed lunch as there is no food provision available. Surprised how much I remembered from my O levels on the Industrial Revolution (Bessemer's Convertor etc)!

The house layout over time (1769 - 1967) was interesting.
Written 8 September 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

FedFan
Coalville, UK13 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2023
Very interesting site. Learned a lot about how iron is produced. Especially enjoyed the workers cottages which were set up in different eras from 1870’s to 1960’s.
Written 6 July 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

slarson127
Dover, NH297 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2022 • Couples
The descent into the black mine was in a crowded lift. The old miner that led the tour shared personal experiences working in a 1 meter shaft.
Incomparable
Written 13 November 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Peter E
Shropshire, UK74 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2022
this is a place well worth a visit for industrial history plenty of parking the climb to the hill top is well worth it
Written 18 October 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Tom B
Chesterfield, UK906 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2022 • Couples
The iron works is a great place well worth a visit and an hour or two of your time.
The industrial revolution was founded on coal and iron and the iron works shows how the iron was produced. 2000 people worked in this small area. The housing showing how the homes changes over the decades is very interesting.
Parking free just across the road .
Written 29 September 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Ann S
13 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2022
Called in here and wasn't really expecting much as it doesn't sound too exciting but don't be deceived. The lady in the little shop where we purchased our tickets we very enthusiastic about the site and gave us lots of information. We enjoyed the visual experience set up in one of the furnaces which gives a great impression of what life would be like when the ironworks was open. There are also some houses on the site - some set up as they would have been in 1760 right through to 1967 and a display about the ironworks business and how it developed. It was really interesting - much more than we expected and although it's not a massive site we were there for around 90 minutes The ironworks is also connected to The Big Pit which is a visitor attraction.
Written 28 September 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Showing results 1-10 of 409
Revenue impacts the experiences featured on this page, learn more.
Is this your Tripadvisor listing?
Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.
Claim your listing

BLAENAFON IRONWORKS: All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with Photos)

All things to do in Blaenavon
RestaurantsFlightsHoliday RentalsTravel StoriesCruisesCar Hire