CSL Resource Guide Wales

By Dr. Rookmin Maharaj
December 9, 2018

City Style and Living Magazine Winter 2018 Travel Guide To Wales

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City Style and Living Magazine Winter 2018 Travel Snowdonia Horse Wales

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CSL’s It List on what to do, where to go, where to stay, eat and see in Wales.

PLANNING
Visit Britain
Itineraries, advice and profiles of what to see, do, explore and eat while in Britain. visitbritain.com

Visit Wales
With an incredible landscape accenting sea and mountains, several national parks and the Wales Coast Path, the country has emerged as a preeminent adventure tourism destination. visitwales.com

CADW
Government of Wales body that works to preserve and protect the country’s historic environment. Opt for the Explorer pass to visit an array of castles throughout Wales. cadw.gov.wales

GETTING THERE
Trainline
Use Trainline, Europe’s leading train and coach app, to discover the best prices on journeys across 43 European countries. thetrainline.com

City Style and Living Magazine Winter 2018 Travel Wales Dolywydden Castle

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GETTING AROUND
Avis
The best way to see Wales is by car. Choose from a variety of makes and models and return to a different location. avis.co.uk

See
Conwy Castle
Impressive medieval castle with all the elements of a Hollywood film set, this UNESCO World Heritage Site boasts towers, dungeons, gateways and nearly mile-long town walls. Try to spot all 12 latrines near Mill Gate. Rose Hill St, Conwy LL32 8AY; cadw.gov.wales/daysout/conwycastle

Plas Mawr
Built between 1576 and 1585, and once the grand town house of Robert Wynn, an influential Elizabethan-era merchant, its original plaster work makes it stand out as an important architectural and historical building on Conwy’s main street. cadw.gov.wales/daysout/plasmawr

Dolwyddelan Castle
Windswept, ruined castle atop a craggy hill associated with Llywelyn, the ruler of North Wales. From the tower there are spectacular panoramic views of the surrounding countryside. cadw.gov.wales/daysout/dolwyddelan-castle

Caernarfon Castle
Figuring prominently in the English stronghold of Wales, the investiture of the present Prince of Wales took place here 1969. It is known for its many towers, most notably the stained glass of Eagle Tower and the museum of Wales’ oldest infantry regiment, the Royal Welsh Fusiliers, in Queen’s Tower. Castle Ditch, Caernarfon LL55 2AY; cadw.gov.wales/daysout/caernarfon-castle

Portmeirion
Sir Clough Williams-Ellis spent 1925 to 1975 dreaming up this eccentric Italianate-style village above the Dwryryd estuary. A hotel, self-catering apartments, restaurants and many other buildings thrill visitors with their unusual architectural delights. portmeirion.wales

Castell Coch
Coch means red in Welsh and the colourfully refurbished castle (actually a restored folly) has beautifully painted and decorated bedrooms. cadw.gov.wales/daysout/castell-coch

Caerphilly Castle
Positioned so that the 13th century castle, ramparts and dams are stunningly reflected in its artificial lakes, it traces its history to the Anglo-Normans in Wales. This is one of the most interactive castles in Wales with sculpture, a treasure hunt for children (of all ages) and even a dragon. cadw.gov.wales/daysout/caerphilly-castle

Harlech Castle
The sea that once lapped at the bounds of the fortification has now receded, but the views have in no way diminished.

Climbing its towers reveals tranquil farmland, the town centre and the sea all of which belie the many wars in which this UNESCO World Heritage Site has figured. cadw.gov.wales/daysout/harlechcastle

Criccieth Castle
On a blustery outcrop above the sea, this castle holds importance in Welsh history as the site of the last major Welsh rebellion against the English. Its twin-towered gatehouse remains largely intact making for a stunning entranceway. cadw.gov.wales/daysout/criccieth-castle

Powis Castle and Garden
An iconic red façade, bronze statues, grand wooden staircase, sloping gardens and an impressive collection of Indian treasures brought to Britain by successive generations of the Clive family have made this castle among the most famous in Wales. Welshpool, SY21 8RF; nationaltrust.org.uk/powis-castle-and-garden

City Style and Living Magazine Winter 2018 Travel Wales Snowdonia

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Do
Aber Falls Distillery Gin Tour
Recipients of five medals at the 2018 San Francisco World Spirits Competition, the distillery produces a range of gin and toffee and coffee liqueurs. Tours and tastings are available Thursday to Sunday. Station Road, Abergwyngregyn, North Wales, LL33 0LB; aberfallsdistillery.com

Anglesey Adventures – Coasteering
This travel outfitter is experienced and knowledgeable and crucially, guides Arron and Stephen makes guests feel comfortable and safe while coasteering – navigating the rocky coastline in a wetsuit. angleseyadventures.com

Llanddwyn Island
Dubbed the most romantic place in Wales due to its connection to the 6th Century Saint Dwynwen, the Welsh patron saint of lovers, this island is accessible only by a walking path at low tide (otherwise it is dangerous).

Yr Eifl
Moderate hike on the Llyn Peninsula’s range of hills called the Rivals. Pass Tre’r Ceiri, Britain’s best preserved Iron Age hill fort on the way to the summit with views of the Irish Sea and Snowdownia.

Snowdonia National Park
Wales’ largest, highest, and oldest national park is marked by geology, history and myth. Expect a landscape formed by glacial movements, historical sites from Neolithic through present day and plenty of King Arthur lore. snowdonia.gov.wales

Llechwedd Slate Caverns
This multi-use complex has reimagined Wales’ historic slate mines into an entertainment playground including ziplining, glamping and trampoline-like bouncy nets. It is the underground slate mine tour however, conducted by Rich and Pete and delving into the industry that defined the area for centuries that allows visitors to truly experience the heart of Wales. Blaenau Ffestiniog LL41 3NB; llechwedd-slate-caverns.co.uk

Ffestiniog Steam Railway
Established in 1832, the oldest independent railway company in the world takes a 13.5 mile journey from the quarrying town of Blaenau Ffestiniog to the harbour in Porthmadog climbing to over 700 feet. festrail.co.uk

Aberglasney Gardens
Belonging first to medieval Welsh owners, these sprawling gardens are divided into themed groupings including a kitchen garden, sunken garden, Asiatic garden and yew tunnel. Llangathen, Carmarthenshire, SA32 8QH; aberglasney.org

Plas Cadnant Hidden Gardens
A hidden gem in North Wales, these restored 10 acres of gardens offer something for everyone from formal lawns with precise topiary to a cottage garden, waterfall, forest woodland and a greenhouse. The gardens also offer accommodation, a tea room and easy to follow paths. Cadnant Rd, Menai Bridge LL59 5NH; plascadnantgardens.co.uk

Halen Môn Sea Salt
Situated on the Menai Strait in Angelsey this award-winning salt factory produces pure and flavoured sea salt and smoked water in a sustainable environment. Tours are available from the staff who treat guests like family. Ty Halen, Brynsiencyn LL61 6TQ; halenmon.com

Snowdon Mountain Railway
Choose between diesel and historic steam locomotives to ascend Snowdon Mountain via a narrow gauge railway operated since 1896. At the top a café, giftshop and summit platforms provide welcome views. Llanberis, Caernarfon LL55 4TY; snowdonrailway.co.uk

King Arthur’s Labyrinth
Lots of family fun: explore the underground mines where the story of King Arthur is told; browse the Corris craft Centre market where vendors ply ice cream, glass souvenirs, jewellery, wooden toys and more; navigate the labyrinth called Lost Legends of the Stone Circle. The onsite café serves wonderful Welsh specialities including cawl, rarebit and cakes. Corris Craft Centre, Corris, Machynlleth, Powys SY20 9RF; kingarthurslabyrinth.co.uk

City Style and Living Magazine Winter 2018 Travel Wales Ivy Stone House

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Eat AND Stay
Castle Hotel Conwy
On the site of a former Cistercian abbey, and public house, the hotel boasts incredible views of Conwy castle from its outdoor dining terrace. High Street, Conwy, North Wales, LL32 8DB; castlewales.co.uk

Marram Grass
The Barrie brothers’ giggly, humble and down-to-earth personality shows in the location (a delightful former rabbit shed in a trailer park), the décor (charming never precious) and in the exceptional food (a celebration of Wales). White Lodge Newborough Anglesey LL61 6RS; themarramgrass.com

Glamping at the Llechwedd Slate Caverns
Part camping (think canvas tent), part hotel (think wood stove, living area and kitchenette), these six lodges afford views of the Vale of Ffestiniog. Llechwedd Slate Caverns, Blaenau Ffestiniog LL41 3NB; llechwedd-slate-caverns.co.uk

Black Boy Inn, Caernarfon
A classic pub dating from 1522 with cavernous dining room, 39 guestrooms, and a city setting. Northgate Street, Caernarfon, Gwynedd, LL55 1RW; black-boy-inn.com

The White Eagle, Rhoscolyn
Renovated pub with coursed meals, casual drinks, and dining overlooking the surrounding bay. white-eagle.co.uk

The Royal Ship Hotel, Dolgellau
Situated in the south of Snowdownia National Park, this pub and hotel’s rustic-chic vibe, excellent food and friendly staff make it an ideal choice in the market town. Queen’s Square, Dolgellau LL40 1AR; robinsonsbrewery.com/royalshiphotel

City Style and Living Magazine Winter 2018 Travel Wales Dylans criccieth

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Dylan’s Cricceth
A popular restaurant group in Wales with 3 locations and a well-deserved reputation for serving fresh, approachable, local food. Among the many reasons to visit: sweet, plump Menai Strait mussels, a selection of unique and classic pizza, gorgeous desserts, a relaxed atmosphere in beautiful surroundings and a friendly staff that makes you feel cozy and welcome. dylansrestaurant.co.uk

Caer Rhun Hall
Newly opened luxury hotel set on gorgeous, lush grounds. Conwy LL32 8UZ; caerrhunhall.co.uk

Coes Faen Spa Lodge
Boutique hotel with excellent restaurant overlooking Barmouth Bridge. A496, Barmouth LL42 1TE; coesfaen.co.uk

Holm House Hotel
Upscale renovated mansion with sea views in serene Penarth. Marine Parade, Cardiff, Penarth CF64 3BG;
holmhousehotel.com


This original article on Wales first appeared in the Winter 2018/19 issue of City Style and Living Magazine.

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