Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Biking in Snowdonia - Monday

We started the day with another very hearty breakfast, then sat in the upstairs lounge to make a few notes about where we had been and what we had done. Then it was back to the bike, and out for another sunny day of touring.

Sir had planned to head south and west towards Pwllheli, but we got a bit distracted when we spotted a sign for 'Caernafon Airworld', and ended up making a detour to Caernafon airport instead. That then led us along the beautiful Llyn Peninsula - and eventually to us following a brown 'scenic route' sign in Nefyn, which in turn led us up over a moor and to a second scary sign that declared 'Danger: Steep and narrow road!'. What could we do but follow it...?

Multiple hairpin bends and switchbacks, stunning views, and a near vertical descent that had the pup gripping its Man's thighs for dear life, ended up depositing us at the amazingly beautiful and remote Nant Gwrtheyrn: an old quarry village that has been renovated as a heritage centre and Welsh language school. Unusually for us, they were having a special 'kiddies day' so the whole place was heaving with toddlers and mothers (and one rather darkly handsome dad...), but they also had a very nice caffi, so we stopped for something cool whilst we drank in the view.

Heading back to the bike, we chatted to one of the ladies from the cafe, who told us of a beautiful Inn across the bay in Porth Dinllaen - so we headed back up the switchback road and over the hills to see if we could get there for lunch. We managed to find Morfa Nefyn, and followed a steep little beach road that looked like it headed in the right direction - but we came to a dead-end by a beautiful little beach. Luckily, a sweet old lady who was our walking her dogs in a mobility scooter put us right - but not before some very friendly chatter about how lovely our bike was, and how she'd swap for her scooter if we liked...! We finally managed to make our way to a Nation Trust Carpark, were the attendant informed us that the Ty Coch Inn was only accessible by a 20 minute walk along the beach - and kindly suggested that it might be a little bit far for us to manage in 80 degree heat wearing full leathers and motox boots...! It's a shame, because the view was beautiful and the reviews amazing. Ah well, next time perhaps...

Undeterred, we headed back over the peninsula to Abersoch (with its beautiful little harbour, stunning views, and incredibly posh luxury developments that reminded me of Sandbanks in Poole), then we doubled back to pass through Pwllehli and on to Criccieth and it's romantic Castle, were, finally wilting in the heat, we stopped at the incredibly charming Blue China Tea Rooms for a much needed pot of tea, a nice bit of banter with the owner - and some very lovely treacle tart and home-baked bara brith.

Feeling a little more rejuvenated - but far too hot for much more travel - we then headed on to Porthmadog and a much shorter route home to the hotel.

We finished the day with a long cooling dip in the pool (and a very proud pup managing several lengths doing a half-arsed back-crawl and a couple of widths attempting a front crawl with a float tucked in my speedos, whilst his Man coached him and cheered him on!) and a nice simple Chinese meal at Fu's on the marina - before returning to the end of the Dock to watch one more perfect sunset - and a wonderful photo by Sir of the pup silhouetted against the fading light...

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