It's that time of year again! Time to finish the mince pies and polish off the port, before tying up your laces and setting some goals for the New Year ahead. Whether you're looking to shed a few pounds, take up a new hobby, or set yourself a challenge, there are plenty of ways to go about it in Bridgend County this year.
Keep yourself fit: Set fun fitness goals
It's no secret that getting fit in the New Year can be pretty dull. Why not give yourself a workout to look forward to in the 2018 and head to Jump Jam Trampoline Park, Wales' biggest trampoline park here in Bridgend. From trampoline classes, to fun Zumba sessions, you'll be jumping fit in no time. Best of all, there's no excuses even if it's raining! www.jumpjam.co.uk
Challenge yourself: Enter one of Wales' biggest cycling events
Wales' answer to the Tour de France, the L'Etape cycling race will celebrate its 15th year in June 2018, with a long stretch of its route taking place between Neath Port Talbort and Bridgend. With routes from 100km to 300 km, this New Year challenge certainly isn't for the faint hearted… maybe we'll just go along to support.
Learn a new skill: Riding the Welsh waves
Ride in the New Year at Rest Bay with one of Wales' best surf schools, Porthcawl Surf School. Let the fresh sea air clear your mind for 2018 and help you achieve your New Year goals. From sessions for kids to courses for adults, Porthcawl Surf School is open all year round. www.porthcawlsurf.co.uk
Try something different: Bike the Merthyr Mawr dunes
Ever think you could ride a bike across the Merthyr Mawr sand dunes? Do something completely different in 2018 and take a fatbike ride with Porthcawl Bike Hire across one of the best coastal landscapes this area has to offer. The custom-made bikes make it easy to cross the sand so this is a great option for families. www.porthcawlbikehire.co.uk
See your friends more often: Visit the new Jennings Building
We all do it - promise ourselves that, this year, we'll spend more time in the company of our nearest and dearest. Luckily, the newly opened Jennings Building is home to a coffee shop, pizza restaurant and Harbour bar so you can choose to catch up over coffee, crostini or cocktail. Each one also offers fantastic views out across the ocean.
Spend more time with the family: Walk the Wales Coast Path
You don't need to spend masses of money to spend quality time as a family. In fact, one of the best ways to reconnect is to spend time together walking the beautiful Wales Coast Path. Race across the golden sands of Rest Bay, hunt rare plants and insects in the Merthyr Mawr dunes and wander the ruins of Ogmore Castle.
Give a little something back: Bridgend's Nature Reserves
Giving back to the community doesn't have to be a chore. In fact it can be huge fun. For example, you can take part in one of the great events taking place throughout the year at natural spaces such as Kenfig and Parc Slip nature reserves. From 'wildlife watch' sessions to lapwing conservation days - keep an eye on our events calendar for opportunities in 2018.