Castle and Coast (Caernarfon, Wales)

A dreaded trip to the local council headquarters turned into a fabulous day out!


I took the number 5 bus from Bangor to Caernarfon on a surprisingly sunny morning (for March, anyways!)

After giving the bus driver my 'diolch!' I wandered to the town square, which wasn't too far; the town is quite compact.

The sun was gracing the town square.



And the famous Caernarfon castle looked mighty handsome this morning.


That statue in the foreground drew my attention.


After approaching it, I learned that it was Lloyd George, who was Prime Minister during World War I. He was from Caernarfon himself.



Not many people can say they've taken a selfie with Lloyd George.


The way the town is built is pretty strange. A lot of the buildings are sloped and shelved atop each other. It reminds me a lot of Edinburgh, just a lot more colourful!



A walk around the castle brought me to boatyard, which was crammed with colourful boats and some pretty inventive names!






A walk through the boatyard led me to the dock, where the water was calmly lapping against the dock edge. It was incredibly relaxing. It was a frosty day yet comfortably warm in the sunshine. The sunlight was dancing and jiggling on the ripples of the water. 




Peaceful.


A walk around the castle made me appreciate just how gigantic and strong it is!





The path around the castle brought me to an amazing view of the Menai Strait's mouth. Strategically, I see why it's a great place to build a castle. 


It wasn't a very windy day, so the sea was incredibly calm and placid.

Following the perimeter of the castle took me towards the old town streets, which were dotted with tiny caf├ęs, restaurants and shops.





The Welsh flags were flying proud on every corner.



On the edge of one of the streets, just opposite the castle entrance, was an eye-catchingly zany ice cream cafe.






Now I'm a massive fan of ice cream and anything a bit unusual, so I just had to pop in!

They had some normal and some pretty cool, wacky flavours, which they make on site apparently. They seem to try out interesting flavours all the time, which you can check out on their page here



*cough* Haribo ice cream!


The girl was incredibly patient and lovely while I was in mental turmoil over which flavour to choose!

On this occasion, I was drawn to the Cherry Cola flavour. I had a few creamy scoops in a fat waffle cone.



I sat myself down in a cosy, white-washed booth and admired the castle towering up high. I stayed here for a little while and checked my e-mails. 




The ice cream was gorgeous! It tasted so dark and sour - you could definitely taste the Coca-Cola in it. I went through a phase in my first year of university when I made ice creams non-stop, and the idea of adding Coca-Cola to it had never crossed my mind, amazingly!


After I munched the tip of my waffle cone, I was up and off to wander the streets.

Well it was like a maze. A mix of old and new buildings, it was pretty confusing.


It was very cute, some parts reminded me of Covent Garden in London!





I walked past a window that showed a completely white room with a piano in it. I have no idea...


I then happened to wander into a gift shop and came across traditional Welsh love spoons.



If you haven't heard of them before, they're a traditional Welsh gift. Traditionally, young men would craft these intricate wooden spoons and present them to their favourite lady as an invitation of courtship. It was a way of showing off how good your craftsmanship was - a man who could carve a beautiful, decorative spoon would make a great handyman around the house. That's the idea behind it. There are usually 'themes' to the love spoons too. A lot of them have keyholes or locks carved into them to represent security, or spirals and twists to represent intimacy. Pretty adorable, ain't it?


After a bit of window shopping, it was time for me to get my bum along to the council offices and get my serious face on! After which, it was back to the bus station to make my way home!


Caernarfon is very nice and is definitely worth a day visit if you're in the area! Admittedly, although the historic side is the town is lovely and pretty special, the other side of town is pretty unpleasant. There are a lot of chavs and dodgy antics. While I waited at the bus station there were cans of Red Bull being tossed around like hand grenades. So yeah, try and stay around the castle area if you can help it!

Know of any other nice castles in the UK or around Europe? If so, does it beat Caernarfon Castle?

Thanks for reading!

Anthony :)

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2 comments:

  1. I love your blog. Your photos are great. What software do you use to edit with as I'm looking at buying some?
    Beth x

    www.TheBritishGirl.co.uk

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    1. Hi Bethan! I'm so happy to hear that, thank you! :)

      I usually use an app called CameraBag - it's the closest thing I've found to Afterlight, but for a laptop!

      The laptop version is about £12, which personally I thought was a bit pricey! I gave the free trial a go and fell in love with it, so I bought it one night when I was desperate! The iPhone/iPad version is a lot cheaper though. :) You can download it here: nevercenter.com/camerabag/desktop/

      Anthony

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