Bridgend is one of the most popular counties in Wales and a hotspot for family life – but what makes it so special?
Nestled in the heart of South Wales, Bridgend is a county known for its stunning natural beauty, quirky festivals, and warm communities. It has earned a reputation as one of the most popular places to live in Wales, offering a charming and affordable lifestyle. In this blog, we’ll explore why Bridgend is a fantastic place to call home, highlighting its unique characteristics and the many activities it has to offer!
Is Bridgend a nice place to live? Let’s hear it from the locals!
To gain a real insight we asked some friendly locals if Bridgend is a nice place to live, this is what they had to say ↓
“Bridgend is perfectly placed between the Brecon Beacons mountain range and beautiful beaches like Newton, Coney, and Aberavon – it often feels like being on a perpetual holiday!
“The area has many nature attractions, like Kenfig Nature Reserve, home to endangered species of birds and plants. Bridgend is also close to the M4, which gives ease of access to the wonderful city of Cardiff, 20 minutes drive East, and also to the picturesque Swansea City, 20 minutes drive to the West.
“There are also many housing options within the County, with newer estates and older, charming homes in the Valleys and so much cheaper than purchasing a house in or near Cardiff. In short, yes Bridgend is a nice place to live!” – Louise, a resident of Bridgend
“It’s a lovely area with a lot to explore and much quieter compared to big cities, with friendly people that say hello wherever you go.” – Callum, a resident of Bridgend
According to this 2020 article by Hunters Estate Agents, Bridgend has been ranked among the happiest places in Wales! Rightmove also endorsed this statement through their research in 2020, and in the article, Rightmove’s data property expert Tim Bannister said, “This year’s study shows a greater appreciation for green spaces and nature, and a strong correlation between people living in coastal and rural areas and how happy people are where they live.”
Top reasons to live in Bridgend
There’s a plethora of reasons and unique characteristics that make Bridgend an exceptional place to live, but below is a list of our top 6 reasons!
1. Family-friendly area with great schools
Bridgend prides itself on being a family-friendly community, offering a safe and nurturing environment for families to thrive with lots of parks, recreational facilities and excellent schools. The top five schools in the county, according to SchoolGuide.co.uk are:
- Porthcawl Comprehensive School
- Archbishop McGrath Catholic High School
- Ysgol Gyfun Gymraeg Llangynwyd
- Bryntirion Comprehensive.
- Brynteg School
2. Life’ s a beach!
Living in Bridgend means being within close proximity to some of the most beautiful beaches in Wales! The stunning coastline that stretches on for miles provides endless opportunities for relaxation and water-based activities. Some of the top beaches are:
3. Rural Charm
Picturesque countryside, rolling hills and lush green landscapes – Bridgend is perfect for those seeking a more tranquil and idyllic lifestyle. Packed with nature hotspots and hidden gems such as Merthyr Mawr Nature Reserve and Sand Dunes, Ogmore-by-Sea, Bryngarw Country Park, Kenfig National Nature Reserve and so much more.
Read our previous article to discover the Top things to do in Bridgend in 2023.
4. Great access to nearby cities
Bridgend is close to M4 so its location offers easy access to major cities like Cardiff and Swansea, making it convenient for commuters or those who enjoy exploring urban attractions.
5. Affordable housing and cost-effective living
Compared to neighbouring cities like Cardiff and Swansea, Bridgend offers a more affordable cost of living, making it an attractive option for those looking to save money without compromising on the quality of life.
According to Zoopla, the average price for a property in Bridgend is £191,500, considerably cheaper than Cardiff, where the average price stands at £255,673. Renting is also more affordable, making Bridgend an attractive place for those looking to get more value for their money. (Source: Zoopla)
Let’s look at the specifics
The average price for a 2-bedroom house in Bridgend is around £142,000, offering a variety of options from charming terraced homes to modern apartments In contrast, a similar 2-bedroom property in Cardiff might cost around £200,000 on average, marking a significant difference.
A 3-bedroom house in Bridgend is typically priced at about £185,000, encompassing detached, semi-detached, and townhouse options compared to the same type of property in Cardiff could run around £250,000.
For those needing more space, a 4-bedroom house in Bridgend averages around £280,000, providing spacious living in desirable neighborhoods.In Cardiff, you might expect to pay upwards of £350,000 for a 4-bedroom house, again highlighting Bridgend’s affordability.
So, whether you’re a first-time buyer or looking to upgrade to a larger home – the lower property prices don’t sacrifice quality or amenities, as Bridgend boasts excellent schools, shopping centres, and recreational facilities.
Renting is also a more affordable option in Bridgend. Whether you’re looking for a flat or a family home, rental prices are generally 15-20% lower than in Cardiff.
This affordability, combined with the town’s charming character and modern conveniences, makes Bridgend an attractive place to call home. The financial accessibility opens doors for more individuals and families to enjoy all that this wonderful town has to offer.
6. Culinary delights
Bridgend is the place to be for all foodies as it has a diverse culinary scene from traditional Welsh dishes to international cuisines, there’s something to satisfy every palate.
According to this 2023 article by WalesOnline, the culinary scene in Bridgend is booming and its lack of chain food establishments makes the area extra special as each eatery owner brings something unique to the table.
The Star Inn
A Michelin Bib Gourmand holder, The Star Inn offers a fantastic fusion of Welsh and French cuisine in a charming setting. It’s a must-visit for food lovers seeking a fine dining experience. Visit their website here.
Cobbles Kitchen & Deli
Specialising in locally sourced ingredients, Cobbles provides a delightful blend of traditional and modern dishes in a cosy, rustic environment. More details can be found here.
The Pickled Radish
This trendy spot offers a diverse menu filled with creativity, from sumptuous seafood to delectable desserts. Check them out here.
A go-to for coffee enthusiasts, Café Aroma offers artisan coffee and a menu of light, flavorful dishes. Visit their website here.
Bridgend Forest Feastival
An annual event celebrating the best of local food and drink, the Bridgend Forest Feastival is a culinary extravaganza featuring cooking demonstrations, food stalls, and live music. It’s a family-friendly event that brings together chefs, producers, and foodies alike.
Great British Food Festival
The Great British Food Festival takes place at nearby Margam Park. Enjoy a wonderful family day out with dogs welcome too. Explore an artisan market, grow your own produce, and indulge in BBQ and baked delights. Relish street food, bars, chef demos, and a challenge stage in a marquee amidst 1,000 acres of parkland.
Cowbridge Food and Drink Festival
Just a short drive from Bridgend, the renowned Cowbridge Food and Drink Festival draws food lovers from all over the country. With over 100 exhibitors, street food vendors, and culinary workshops, it’s a vibrant celebration of Welsh gastronomy.
Whether you’re a culinary connoisseur seeking Michelin-recognised dining or a family looking for a fun food festival, Bridgend’s vibrant food scene has something to satisfy every palate. It’s a town that loves to eat, and that love is evident in every bite!
Want more info? Read our previous article and discover some of the best places to eat in Bridgend in 2023.
7. The best is yet to come!
Bridgend is on the cusp of an exciting era, with innovative regeneration projects and improvements that are set to transform the town. From the comprehensive redevelopment of Bridgend Town Centre, promising a vibrant urban hub, to the £200 million transformation of Porthcawl Waterfront into a thriving coastal resort, the horizon is bright.
Add to that the community-focused mixed-use development at Parc Afon Ewenni, the expansion of Bridgend Science Park to foster technology and business growth, significant investments in transportation infrastructure for better connectivity, and a progressive plan for active travel to promote walking and cycling, Bridgend is committed to enhancing the quality of life for its residents.
With a sustainable and flourishing future, whilst preserving its rich heritage while weaving modernity and innovation – Bridgend isn’t a county that is standing still!
Verdict: Bridgend is a nice place to live indeed!
Bridgend is undoubtedly a charming place to live, offering a high quality of life amidst breathtaking scenery and warm communities. With its family-friendly environment, affordable living, and plenty of activities to enjoy, it’s no wonder it’s considered one of the happiest and nicest places to live in Wales.
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We’re going to #BridgendAndBeyond…
blue self storage is more than just a storage provider. We care about our customers and community, so we’ve put together a series of insightful guides after many queries about the ins and outs of Bridgend.
New to self storage? Explore our #StorageMadeSimple series with our experts:
- What is self storage?
- How to choose the right size storage unit when you’re moving house
- Why do people use self storage?
- Self storage insurance: what is it and is it important?
Looking for some advice? Check out more of our useful info & guides to self storage
Some quotes from Bridgend locals have been edited for grammatical consistency and length. blue self storage is not responsible for any third-party opinions or content linked to other websites.