Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Holyhead Coastal Walk

Hello, I thought I might go up Snowdon while I was in North Wales, but after looking at videos on yooootooob, I decided against it. It seems the summit is often obliterated by swarms of people all pouring off the train and climbing the steps to the top. I didn't fancy that at all. I decided to go up a little mountain on Anglesey instead, and Holyhead Mountain looked like just the ticket. 
As I was about to set off from the hotel a coach pulled up and discharged about fifty ramblers who set off down the path I had planned to take. Oh dear. I gave them a ten minute start and off I went. Maybe we wouldn't bump into each other once we got going. My plan was to take the coastal path then head up and over the top of the mountain. Maybe they had a different plan and I wouldn't see them again.  
I hadn't been going long before I came to an interesting building, it is quite high up so can be seen from the hotel below. On closer inspection I was disappointed that it had been fenced off and was in fact derelict. Such a shame, it must have been a beautiful building when it was occupied. I was speaking to a lady walking her dog, she said it belonged to the Ministry of Defence. 
Around the back was another building, also derelict.

The rugged coastline around this area is beautiful.

Large white pebbles litter the beach.

Onward I went, some of the paths are quite wide and easy to walk.

I'm going up there.

And up there.

Oh no, look who I have caught up.

I take a ten minute break to let them get ahead.

The weather was perfect, while the rain poured back home I was in brilliant sunshine. This is North Stack, a redundant fog signal station. Another break to admire the view.

Two boats go backwards and forwards to Ireland from Holyhead.

Stunning views.

After going up and over the mountain I arrived at South Stack Lighthouse, a bit further round the coast.

There they are again. I'll wait and let them get ahead.

I carried on around the coastal path and caught up with the ramblers again at a cafe. After a quick loo break I set off ahead of them.

This helicopter was hovering for ages over the land ahead of me, and eventually flew away.

Oh wow, a blue lagoon, so beautiful. After glancing behind me I saw the ramblers catching me up, so I stopped again and let them get ahead. Don't get me wrong, I don't mind seeing a few people when I am out and about, but I don't want to walk with a whole bunch of them.

Time was getting on and I needed to turn inland back to Holyhead, at that point I got off the coastal path and left the ramblers to it.

It was a couple of miles back to the hotel at the Marina. I picked up some food at Lidl and did what I always do when out walking, have a picnic in my room. Cheaper to spend £3 - £4 in a shop than £12 on a meal in a restaurant. I watched an hour of telly because sadly I couldn't get onto the internet.

I have checked the mileage, today was twelve. In total for the holiday it was 46 miles. One more day left to report on, I'll post that tomorrow.

Who needs big mountains when there are little beauties like this. It was a fabulous day. Thanks for popping in, we'll catch up soon.
Toodle pip

Back later

Hello. I don't feel like writing a happy post today because I'm feeling sad for those families who have lost loved ones, sad for those who are injured, and sad for the people who's lives have changed forever. I am struggling to find any more words.

My broken tooth is fixed, I have bought some plants from the garden centre, now I am going outside in the sunshine to plant them.

Back later. xxxxx

Monday, 22 May 2017

Two bridges at Menai

Hello. Onward I went, from Caernarfon to the Menai Bridge and over to Anglesey. Once over the water I parked in a layby on the A5 half way between the two bridges. This is the Suspension Bridge. 
And this is the Britannia Bridge.

It was free parking in the layby so I abandoned the car and went for a walk. I followed the coastal footpath which was very well signposted. This is Church Island, it juts out into the water, and has a very ancient small church on it surrounded by gravestones on the steep slopes.

It was very peaceful, hardly anyone there. It has a tarmac path where you can walk across to it.

The little church is very simple and basic, nothing elaborate.

The monument at the top.

There is a massive old tree at the entrance to it, with this plaque attached to the wall below it.

Leaving the island the path goes underneath the Suspension Bridge.

I went up on top and walked across it and back again.

This is the view looking down on Menai town.

I walked further along the coastal footpath and took another route back to the car. I was on my way to Holyhead and decided to take the long route round because I had plenty of time.

Beaumaris looked like a nice place so I parked up and had a look around. It was a beautiful sunny day, very enjoyable to walk along the promenade, have a look at the castle, and watch the world go by.

 I followed the A5025 around the whole island and came to Holyhead. I came across a Travel Lodge and went in to ask for a room. Unfortunately they were full, but the nice lady at reception rang up another hotel to ask for me. They had a room so she gave me directions to find it. I was dead chuffed when I saw it, right opposite the Marina, and just where I wanted to be to begin a walk the next day. Couldn't be better. Great view.

Nice hotel, but this is where the Wifi connection was hit and miss, so I had to give up and watch telly instead. I'll show you where I walked, tomorrow.

Thanks for popping in, we'll catch up soon.
Toodle pip

Sunday, 21 May 2017

A visit to Portmeirion

Hello. I'm back at Tightwad Towers, headquarters of Life After Money. As regular readers will know, this is where I share my frugal living money saving methods, which gives me cash to spend on treats, and holidays are my treats. 
Time to catch up on where I have been. I had a list of places to visit on my North Wales tour, some of them I didn't have time to do, but never mind, another visit might happen at a later date. 
This post is all about Portmeirion, which is a delightful tourist village in Gwynedd, not far from Porthmadog. From the moment I walked through the entrance I thought WOW, this place is fabulous. 
It was built by architect Clough Williams-Ellis to show how a beautiful site could be developed without spoiling it. All buildings at Portmeirion are registered Grade 1 or Grade 11 historic buildings.  The village is surrounded by 70 acres of forest gardens. Portmeirion is owned by a charity. 
The colourful entrance is a taste of what's to come. The buildings blend in well with the rugged natural rockface. 
 Every building is painted in candy colour, it looks like a giant sweetie village.

Some of these buildings are self catering cottages, there are thirteen in total sleeping from three to eight people.

Anyone for chess?

Look into a window and you will see Alice in Wonderland at the Mad Hatters tea party.

The little train does a tour of the gardens. Free to go on.

 Fantastic views from high up in the woods.

This is the Town Hall.

I just had to have an ice cream cornet, twenty flavours to choose from. The strawberry cheesecake is lovely.

This is the hotel, it's right on the edge of the water, with fabulous views over the bay.

The flowers in full bloom are beginning to drop their petals.

Deep in the wood is the Dogs Cemetery. The wooden figure has been carved with a chain saw. I found this secluded spot very emotional, thinking about Rocky.

There are lots of steps and secret pathways, it's like an enchanted wood.

This is Castell Deudraeth, a Victorian mansion which is now a hotel.

I absolutely loved Portmeirion, it's like a theme park for adults, but without the tackyness and noise. It's a land of make believe for big kids like me. If you get the chance go and see it for yourself. Check out the web site here. 

More about my North Wales trip tomorrow. Thanks for popping in, we'll catch up soon.
Toodle pip