Arthur’s wizard Merlin was born in Carmarthen and is said to lie buried just outside the town that stages a yearly festival in his honour. But he’s not dead reputedly, just trapped - you can listen for his groans on Merlin’s Hill. Pay a visit to The Merlin’s Hill Centre is at Alltyfyrddin on land that has been farmed for more than 2000 years.
The gnarled stump of an old tree once stood in a traffic island, in Merlin’s home town of Carmarthen. Some maintain the oak was planted to celebrate the return of King Charles II to the throne, but local legend links it with the supernatural sidekick of King Arthur: 'When Merlin’s Oak shall tumble down, then shall fall Carmarthen Town'. In 1978 the last fragments of the tree were taken to the local museum; shortly after, Carmarthen suffered its worst floods in living memory.
Or do something different...
Be a sorcerer’s apprentice! Sign up for a magic course inspired by Merlin himself. Your teacher will join you in your holiday cottage or hotel for a night of magic. Or take The Creepy Carmarthen Tour, a fusion of local history and magic, combining real events from the town's past with magical experiments in mind-reading and extra sensory perception. thespookymagiccompany.co.uk
Or head to Dolaucothi Gold Mines
nationaltrust.org.uk/ dolaucothi-gold-mines and try your hand at panning for Welsh gold, possibly the very precious metal used to inscribe the sword Excalibur with the words 'Whoso pulleth out this sword of this stone is the rightwise born king of all England'. Legend says the famous weapon was made by an elf on the mystical Isle of Avalon, which many believe was in Wales.
Enchanting places to stay
Faerie-Thyme Hill camping. This three-acre camp site in Crwbin, Kidwelly has its own mysterious stone circle. It offers tent pitches with firepits, vintage caravans with their own garden area and hard-standings for small campervans, as well as space to relax by magical giant dreamcatchers, faerie-thyme.co.uk
This eight-room converted coach house on a working dairy and sheep farm in St Clears offers b&b and its famous Wizard’s Tea for grown-ups and apprentice magicians alike. Some rooms are suitable for families of five lletycynin.co.uk