A travel blogger who spends most of the year wandering the world has turned his talents to creating a new site promoting Wales as a travel destination.
Globetrotting entrepreneur Kieren Windsor has launched https://walesguidebook.com/, a quirky but comprehensive guide to the Land of His Fathers which aims to turn up the gems hidden among the best-known holiday hotspots.
So as well as the delights of Swansea’s magnificent Gower coastline or Llandudno’s Victorian elegance you can find out how to go alpaca trekking in Pembrokeshire, race the tide to a deserted church off the coast of Anglesey or visit Waterfall Country in the Brecon Beacons.
The computer whiz from Powys studied business and marketing at Cardiff University and began his marketing career with Wrexham’s successful Village Bakery before moving on to the North West where he worked for baking and confectionary companies in the Manchester area.
Kieren, 30, who is from Newtown and went to school in Llanfair Caereinion, learned about the role of influencers in marketing through his employment: “I was working with well-known bloggers in my day job and decided to give it a go myself.
“I started a backpacking travel blog as a hobby around five years ago and a few years later, it morphed into a full-time business, enabling me to quit my day job,” he said.
“It’s not about social media as most people imagine, I create content that people come and read directly or through search engines and that’s how I receive hundreds of thousands of readers each month.”
Unfortunately, a few weeks after deciding to go full-time as a blogger in 2020, the pandemic caused his income to drop off a cliff. But with no desire to return to office life, he doubled down by covering non-travel topics.
Now with travel back on the agenda he’s been on his travels again this summer but this time around Wales, gathering material for his new business venture.
Kieren said: “Wales Guidebook is about helping people discover the best things to do in the area they live, are staying in or visiting.
“The site is launching with travel guides to over 100 places but it will eventually cover every destination in Wales. So, whether you’re in Anglesey or in Gwent, in Flintshire or in the Vale of Glamorgan, then Wales Guidebook can help you plan your trip.
Kieren isn’t just pitching for the young, Rough Guide kind of traveller – he wants to cater for families and older adventurers as well and to attract advertising relevant to everyone who visits Wales whether it’s on a day trip or a staycation.
“I’ve spent several months travelling around Wales this summer, visiting more castles, waterfalls and lighthouses than I can count.
“But I’ve also been finding the lesser-known things to do, such as swimming in the Witches Cauldron in Pembrokeshire, visiting the grave of Gelert the faithful dog in Snowdonia, and finding the tidal islands of Anglesey.
“Wales is my home country so who better to launch a site all about it? I can make recommendations based on my experience and by tapping into local knowledge through the network of experts around Wales who are working on the project with me.”
The site, which launched this summer, will be monetised through advertising and by working with tour operators and accommodation providers across Wales to promote their services.
Kieren said: “This is my most ambitious project to date. It will take years to visit every attraction in Wales and build the biggest Welsh travel site but I’m up for the challenge.
“The best part is being able to travel your own country as a job, I’d forgotten just how beautiful Wales is. You can take it for granted when you live here so it’s great to get out and explore again and I hope I can encourage others to do the same.
For more information go to www.walesguidebook.com