Solo Trip, Llanduando and Conwy, Wales

This fall I decided to visit a new country. The country of Wales. Wales is a fairly small country with a huge personality. I traveled throughout the entire country on this trip but I’m dividing it into several parts, Llanduando and Conwy, Snowdonia and Caernarfon, Port Merion, St. David’s and Pembrokeshire, then Swansea and Chepstow. If you’re looking for a destination full of castles and breathtaking scenery look no further.

Things to consider before you go

The first thing to know about Wales and is probably one of the reasons it’s not a hot travel destination with tourists is that you really need a car. There is some public transportation but there is not a lot of it. If you really want to see the country you need your own car.

North Wales tends to be quite sleepy. Not that there aren’t a ton of things to do but a lot of places close at 6 pm. You can find restaurants open after 6 and some bars but if you’re looking to grab a coffee at Starbucks or a cafe after dinner you’ll be out of luck.

If you like castles and abbeys get the Explorer Pass. I knew I was going to be in Wales for the better part of two weeks so I invested. It allows you entrance into 28 sites throughout Wales. I purchased the 7-day pass to be used in 14 days for roughly $35 and it was well worth it.

The last thing to know is that much like the rest of Great Britain they drive on the left and they love their roundabouts. Although at first, this was a little nerve-wracking you quickly get used to it. One driving rule to keep in mind. Many of the roads are very narrow. Be kind and let others pass. The Welsh know their roads and tend to travel at higher speeds than posted. One Welshman told me, one of their biggest pet peeves is when someone is driving on the road at a slower speed and they don’t leave enough room between them and the next car for another car to pass in between. So be mindful when you’re driving in Wales to leave at least a 1 to 2 car length gap between you and the car in front of you.

First stop Llanduando

Llandudno is a gorgeous seaside town. It came to prominence during the reign of Queen Victoria as a place to visit and relax. That feeling is still very much the tone of this town. This was also my base for the first few days of my trip. Poised on the Northern coast this Victorian town is beautifully laid out and conducive to long walks along its huge promenade.

Things to do

Take a walk along the Llandudno promenade to the Llandudno pier. The pier is full of little shops and eateries where you can get everything from a souvenir mug to a fist full of candy floss.

Take a trip up to Great Orme. You can either drive up or take the Great Orme tram. If you drive, make sure you stop at the little kiosk and pay for parking. At the top, you will be greeted with sweeping views on three sides as well as some local sheep.

Follow The White Rabbit trail. All throughout Llandudno, there are wooden statues of the characters in Alice In Wonderland. There is an interactive app you can download to find the White Rabbit. Along the way, you’ll meet the Cheshire cat, The Queen of Hearts and many other favorites.

Places to Eat

Being a resort town Llandudno has quite a few options. Here are some of my suggestions.

The Palladium, Wetherspoon’s – Each time I stopped in here it was packed. The food is good and there is truly something for everyone here. The restaurant was once a theater that was popular in the 1920s. They kept the decor and arranged the seating so you can eat in one of the boxes or in the orchestra. The main feature is that they kept those architectural elements of the theater which makes for a great dining experience.

LC Bar – Located two blocks from the Palladium this cozy bar had an affordable and delicious menu. Their Steak and Ale pie is divine and they had a blackberry Gin I wish I had brought home.

The Loaf Coffee & Sandwich bar – For a good breakfast and some tasty coffee stop at the Loaf. It’s only open for breakfast and lunch so make sure you hit it up early.

Where I Stayed

There are quite a few options for accommodations in Lluduano. I stayed at Del Mar. It was perfect. It provided on-site parking as well as a gorgeous full welsh breakfast every morning. The room was comfortable and the staff was lovely and very helpful.

Next Up Conwy

Conwy is a short 10-minute drive from Llundudno. I took the Hop on Hop off bus which left from the beginning of the Pier and dropped me off two blocks from the entrance to Conwy castle. Conwy is a medieval walled city with cute alleyways and several historic landmarks as well as great cafes and shops.

Things to do

Conwy Castle – When you approach Conwy from Llundudno it’s the first thing you see. This imposing structure bars the way into the village of Conwy. Built by Edward I between 1283 and 1287, it is considered to be one of the finest examples of military architecture from the late 13th century. Most of the castle is open to explore with many of the turrets providing outstanding views of the village and harbor of Conwy.

The Smallest House in Great Britain – If you want to see a novelty head to the harbor to see the smallest house in Great Britain. It is 1.8 meters wide and has two floors. Bring cash because they don’t take credit cards.

Plas Mawr – A gorgeous example of an Elizabethan townhouse. Take the time to walk through the beautifully preserved house and garden. A free audio guide is provided so you can move through the house in any direction you like. This is included in the Explorer pass.

Conwy Town Walls – Much like in York the town walls are available to walk. It’s also included in the Explorer pass.

Places to eat

Bank of Conwy – I was fooled when I approached the Bank. I was looking for an ATM and thought it was a bank. Instead, I found a really great pub. With great food and a cool ambiance, this is a must stop.

The Press Room Cafe – Situated just below the castle this is a great little cafe with lovely desserts and coffee.

Tower Coffee House – This little cafe sits in one of the parapets in the city wall facing the harbor. It’s a great place to sit and enjoy tea especially when they have the fire going.

I loved this country and I cannot understand why it’s so underrated. From the people to the scenery there are few places that are so dynamic. For more information or if you want tips and help to book a trip to Wales send me a message. I would be more than happy to help you book your trip to this beautiful and pristine country. Until next time

1 Comment

  • BT January 24, 2020 at 9:49 pm

    Fabulous blog! Wanna go to Wales now!

    Reply

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