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Centre for Alternative Technology

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Address: Llwyngwern Quarry | Pantperthog, Machynlleth SY20 9AZ, Wales
Phone Number:
+44 1654 705950
Website
Today
10:00 - 17:00
Open now
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Hours:
Sun - Sat 10:00 - 17:00
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Description:

The Centre for Alternative Technology (CAT) has been inspiring visitors...

The Centre for Alternative Technology (CAT) has been inspiring visitors about sustainable practice for over 40 years. With seven acres of hands-on displays, examples of environmentally responsible building, renewable energy, organic gardens and kids’ holiday activities, there is something for everyone at CAT.

 

Follow CAT’s interactive Zero Carbon Britain Trail to discover how to live enjoyably in a world with reduced emissions. Or, winding up through managed oak woodland, the Quarry Trail opens up never-before-seen areas of CAT and breathtaking views of the Snowdonia National Park.

On special evenings, the Quarry After Dark programme allows guests to experience CAT after the visitor centre has closed. This diverse programme of events boasts live music, talks, late night tours, film screenings and exhibitions.

Nestled in a historic slate quarry CAT site is a little uneven in places and a lot of the displays are outdoors so please wear sensible footwear and waterproof clothing.

During the winter months we close the Cliff Railway and some of the outdoor trails due to the unpredictable weather, please keep an eye on our website for updated information.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 363 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 112
    Excellent
  • 105
    Very good
  • 56
    Average
  • 46
    Poor
  • 42
    Terrible
Interesting day out

Having planned to go to CAT for a while I finally went. It was highly interesting and informative on alternative technology, so if that interests you then you will enjoy having a... read more

Reviewed 14 March 2017
LS3027
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363 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 361: English reviews
Birmingham
Level Contributor
44 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 April 2017 via mobile

I've been going to the centre on and off since 1978 or thereabouts. This was by far the worse experience I have ever had and in addition my friends who were there for the first time said it seemed years behind the times and looked like a rubbish tip . It was a very sad visit because years ago it... More 

Helpful?
1 Thank RobNat
CAT-VC-Team, Public Relations Manager at Centre for Alternative Technology, responded to this review

Dear Rob, I am sorry that your last visit to CAT wasn't as good as your previous visits. At this time of year (before the tourist season begins) our fewer visitor numbers allows us to carry out refurbishment works for the coming year. It is very unfortunate that your friends' first impression of our centre was during this transitional period... More 

Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviewed 14 March 2017

Having planned to go to CAT for a while I finally went. It was highly interesting and informative on alternative technology, so if that interests you then you will enjoy having a trip round CAT. However if you are not into alternative technology, this is not the place for you. It took into account the season and charged lower winter... More 

Helpful?
Thank LS3027
CAT-VC-Team, Public Relations Manager at Centre for Alternative Technology, responded to this review

Hi, I am glad you found your visit interesting. CAT was born out of the desire to share skills, knowledge and to experiment with an alternative way of living. Over it's 40+ years the centre has evolved greatly but we continue in our mission to inspire people to think about our collective connection to nature and each other. The centre... More 

Bideford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
44 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 March 2017

The place felt run down and neglected, Exhibits were out of date and tatty. We had hope to visit and learn new ideas and what we could utlise in our own home but we seemed to be more advanced than they. The garden exhibits were neglected and the whole place felt dirty and unloved. Add to the fact that the... More 

Helpful?
2 Thank jwjoydays
CAT-VC-Team, Public Relations Manager at Centre for Alternative Technology, responded to this review

Hi, I am sorry that you didn't enjoy you recent visit. At this time of year we are all looking forward to some sunshine to bring some warmth and colour to the world. As we plant seasonally much of our new growth is being nurtured in the warmth of our polytunnels but transplanting these fargile shoots to the beds has... More 

Cheshire, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
33 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 March 2017 via mobile

We visited today at a lose end when the rain scuppered our plans. When we arrived we were unsure the site was even open until we had walked up the steep stairs to the main entrance, the lift doesn't work in the winter months, during this time I would say this is not a trip for anyone who struggles walking.... More 

Helpful?
1 Thank 2424e
CAT-VC-Team, Public Relations Manager at Centre for Alternative Technology, responded to this review

Hi there, I am sorry you got caught in our wet and windy Welsh weather during your recent visit. During the winter months when the weather batters the site we close the train as a rule so that it isn't on/off with the weather. We are constantly refreshing the centre's displays and information boards and during winter season when the... More 

Kelowna, Canada
Level Contributor
8 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 February 2017

We were visiting from Canada and decided to make the trip by bus from Aberystwyth specifically to learn more about alternative technology. The centre is dated and I recognise that at the time it was innovative but now in need of upgrading or perhaps promoted as an historical alternative settlement of the 60's. We were looking for some relevant information... More 

Helpful?
2 Thank brianaishe
CAT-VC-Team, Public Relations Manager at Centre for Alternative Technology, responded to this review

Hi Brian, I am very sorry you didn't enjoy your recent visit. During the winter months the train is not in action due to the unpredictable weather at this time of year. We keep our website up to date with any seasonal changes and reduce the entry price to reflect this however I am not aware of any displays that... More 

Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 February 2017

This is a wonderful place. I have visited regularly for nearly 30 years and it still inspires me. I wish I had more time to spend here, and I hope it continues to embody the spirit of sustainable living well into the future. Great for the kids

Helpful?
1 Thank mark b
CAT-VC-Team, Public Relations Manager at Centre for Alternative Technology, responded to this review

Hi Mark, Thank you for your kind review, it's always great to hear from our returning visitors. I am sure over the years you have visited you have seen the centre evolve and our recent works only continue this evolution. In late 2016 we opened our brand new Quarry Trail which opens up stunning views across the centre and into... More 

France
Level Contributor
162 reviews
51 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 72 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 November 2016

Loved this place. Great for adults and children of all ages. A great learning experience and popular with school trips.

Helpful?
1 Thank Janet O
Management response:

Hi Janet, I am so glad that you enjoyed your visit. Please keep your eye on our website for events, tours and news at CAT in 2017. Looking forward to seeing you again soon. Warmest wishes, Holly More 

Manchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
341 reviews
274 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 November 2016 via mobile

Some amazing exhibits Great greenhouses and other houses. For some reason I never enjoyed myself. Sorry

Helpful?
Thank aellituv
Management response:

Hi there, I am sad and, if I'm honest, a little confused to hear that despite your nice comments you did not enjoy your visit. We would welcome your constructive criticism so that we might understnd why you did not feel you had a good time. Warmest wishes, Holly More 

Bury, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 23 November 2016

Been here some years ago, but to be aware of what can, and has been done since - we are now alert to the planets limitations and we will survive. If not ........? Presence of students is heartwarming and were helpful. If a nearby river can be used to help save the planet, and clean the unit, and then return... More 

Helpful?
Thank Malc N
Management response:

Hi Malc, I am glad you enjoyed your visit and that you left feeling so positive about the future. Although there is always something to do at CAT, having the students here really brings the centre to life! Hope to see you again soon, Holly More 

Level Contributor
22 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 November 2016 via mobile

It's always fun to go to the Cat center! We love the mole hole & the slide & all of the things that we needed to peddle, press buttons etc to make them work. My nieces would have preferred it to be a windy day so the chair would go up and down! Also, great free craft activities etc during... More 

Helpful?
1 Thank Caryl Mai Edwards
Management response:

Dear Caryl, It sounds like you and ayour nieces had a great day, I am glad! We are a solutions based organisation so for us it is very important that our visitors have a hands-on experience in order to be able to apply what they are learning to their own lives, but it must be fun too! This of course... More 

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