Sue @ Cadair View Lodge's Blog

Tales from a self catering holiday provider

Ogwen Valley 8th Sept 15


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Journey To + From Work 8th September 2015

You may or may not know that I live on the beautiful island of Anglesey in North Wales, but our holiday accommodation at Cadair View Lodge is in Southern Snowdonia.  There are several routes that I can take – the quickest (and shortest) is via Caernarfon and Porthmadog.  A good functional route but it can be a bit slow and although picturesque by most people’s standards not THE most picturesque route.

When I set out yesterday to do the journey it was a beautiful, cloud free morning and so I decided to take a stunning route across the mountains.  See my route HERE

I always love the drive up the Nant Francon valley.  The mountains tower above you as you climb towards Cwm Idwal and Tryfan.  As always, it seems, there was no chance of stopping on the way up to take a photo but once passed Ogwen Cottage I stopped at the lay-by on the left, by the lake and took a few snaps on my phone.

Ogwen Valley 8th Sept 15

Ogwen Valley 8th Sept 15

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Even at 10am on a Tuesday morning the car parks were getting full and there were lots of people on the hills already.

I continued on my journey along the A5 to Betws y Coed where I picked up the A470 towards the cabins.

Again a stunning drive with the heights of Cnicht looming ahead.  Nowhere to stop or too much traffic behind to get photos – sorry.

Climbing up over the Crimea Pass (did you know that there used to be a brewery where the layby is now?) and into the barren landscape of the slate quarries.  After a long slow climb up the hill I was glad that the coaches ahead turned off into Llechwedd Slate Caverns.  Whether they were going on the underground tour or going to Bounce Below or on the Zip World attractions I don’t know but I was glad that they’d gone.  Down and through Blaenau Ffestiniog which is quite pretty (honest) on a bright sunny day.

Once out the other side of Blaenau Ffestiniog, Llan Ffestiniog and Ffestiniog (it carries on for longer than you’d think) I was back out onto the rolling hillsides.  Glimpses of the Rhinogau ahead and occasionally the sea, I found a place to stop to look across towards Tanygrisiau and the mountains beyond.  Then onwards again.

Looking back towards Tanygrisiau 8th Sept 15

Looking back towards Tanygrisiau 8th Sept 15

Turning left though still on the A470 I’m almost there.  Trawsfynydd Lake looks spectacular but no time to drop into the cafe today (that was yesterday’s treat).  Now driving south with the Rhinogs to my right.  The three peaks of Cadair Idris come into view – left turn at Bronaber and I’m there!

Panorama taken from Sunset View deck

Panorama taken from Sunset View deck

A day at work looking over cabins and making notes of things that need to be done… that time of year.

Time for home but far too nice for the inland route… and I needed a cup of tea so decided to head over to Criccieth where I was sure to get a parking space next to the beach – I love to paddle whenever I get the chance, shoes and socks are off… big kid in me!

Criccieth Beach 8th Sept 15

Criccieth Beach 8th Sept 15

Then off to Cadwaladers for tea and cake… and managed to get a window seat overlooking the sea again.

All good things must come to an end… well sort of.  As I said I live on the wonderful island of Anglesey and when I got home as it was such a beautiful evening we decided to have fish and chips on the beach… so… this is where I had my tea.  Overlooking the Menai Straits with the sun just beginning to set on Caernarfon Castle opposite us.

Caernarfon Castle across the Menai Straits 8th Sept 15

Caernarfon Castle across the Menai Straits 8th Sept 15

If you would like more information about Cadair View Lodge log cabin accommodation in Snowdonia see our website http://www.CadairViewLodge.co.uk


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You’re Looking For Pet Friendly Accommodation?

This is a testimonial from some very happy guests.

Whiskey at Cadair View Lodge

Whiskey at Cadair View Lodge

“Four adults and our pet labrador decided to spend a week in Snowdonia National Park. and found what we believe is the best holiday web site we have ever seen. It is so informative about the various log cabins, the site amenities, places to visit etc and if like ourselves you want to take your pet on holiday the web site has a brilliant write-up on all the things dogs want from a holiday, and written by Whisky the resident dog. TAKE A LOOK. ITS BRILLIANT.

We stayed in Cadair view lodge cabin, 2 bedroom, large extended kitchen, and our dog had plenty of room for his bed to sleep on, and a large decking for him to lie out on and for us adults to sit out and relax and eat outside when weather permitted.
Shop on site and a great pub only 5 minutes walk from our cabin which we found very friendly and do great meals and dogs allowed in as well.
5 minutes drive takes you to Coed y Brenin forest where you can walk various trails, cycle (definitely taking our bikes next time) picnic by the river or simply sit and have one of the biggest cups of coffee you will ever have at very reasonable price.
Porthmadog, Harlech, Criccieth, Barmouth, Dolgellau,Pwllheli, Abersoch and Portmerion are all within half hour or so drive and we visited them all. William, our lab, says he liked Black Rock Sands the best.  Miles of wonderful beaches for him to run and play on (adults loved it as well).
You will find all the information on what to do and where to go on their website which means when you get there you can enjoy your holiday knowing you have all the information you want to hand.

Great directions on how to find the site as well.
Doubtful if you will need much help in deciding if this is the place you want to holiday at, but if you do need help ring Sue Hall, she is extremely pleasant and helpful and will tell you all you need to know.
The accommodation is not a 5 star Hotel, it’s a log cabin in Snowdonia National Park, but we had more fun than any 5 star hotel we have ever stayed in and look forward to returning later in the year.”

See our Pet Friendly Accommodation Details HERE
Criccieth Castle from the west shore


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St David’s Day in Criccieth?

Criccieth Beach Sunset Panorama (2)

As has happened the last few years Cadw (the Welsh Government’s historic environment service) has announced FREE entry to several of its properties to celebrate St David’s Day.  The locations within 30 minutes of us are Harlech Castle, Criccieth Castle and Dolwyddelan Castle (there are several more in North Wales too).  Details HERE.  As we both love to go out exploring on at least one day each weekend we’ve decided to visit Criccieth if the weather is good enough.

Haven’t spent any time in Criccieth for nearly a year.  The last time we were there the weather was good enough to sit on the sea front and to “promenade” along the promenade.  We didn’t visit the Castle last time so it’ll be nice to see over it and refresh my memories of it.  There are fantastic views across Cardigan Bay to Harlech and way beyond from the Castle and surrounding grounds.  Did you know that Criccieth was one of the pioneering Cadw sites that ran a trial of allowing dogs to visit (on a lead and with their owners of course)?  And this has now been extended to more locations.

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As well a visiting the Castle we’ll most likely pop into Cadwaladers for an ice cream… a MUST when you’re in the town.  Their cafe “overhangs” the beach with fantastic views across Cardigan Bay.  They do great cake and coffee too.  Have just heard about a Welsh Cake Sundae that they’re launching on Sunday.  Sneaky peak HERE

There’s also a visit to Criccieth Lifeboat Station on the books too.

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We drop into lots of RNLI stations to say “Hi” as my partner (and his son) is a crew member of Holyhead Lifeboat Station.  There’s always a warm welcome.

For future reference, Dylan’s, the restaurant currently based in Menai Bridge is opening a new venture on the beach (well almost) at Criccieth early Summer 2015.  They’ve got all sorts planned for the town so they’ll be a place to visit maybe next time we visit.  You’ll find some more information HERE.

I’ve also heard rumours that there maybe fish and chips for tea…. but where?  No Dylan’s yet?

So now you know my plans for the weekend… how about you?

Will post some photos of the day if there are any decent ones – fingers crossed for good visibility from the Castle and no rain.

Criccieth is 19 miles from our log cabin accommodation at Cadair View Lodge and it takes about 29 minutes to drive there.