Sue @ Cadair View Lodge's Blog

Tales from a self catering holiday provider


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Earth Day 2016 @ Cadair View Lodge Ltd

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April 22nd 2016 is #EarthDay.  You may’ve heard about it in the media but what does it mean to you?  Have you thought about what small changes you could make that might have a positive effect on your environment or on the planet as a whole?  Here are some ideas from The Independent though there is a lot of other information about.

So what do we do to be greener?

  • We have 30 solar panels on our office roof which give us FREE green electricity to run our office for most of the year… with energy to spare.
  • We DON’T print marketing material as we recognise that the majority of leaflets, brochures and flyers end up in the bin (or as litter)
  • We print the absolute minimum that we can in our office and recycle as much paper that we receive as we can.  Last year we took 80kg + to the recycling centre
  • In the office we boil the kettle at the beginning of the work day and fill a flask which keeps us in tea (usually) until home time
  • All of our laundry and the majority of our welcome pack shopping is done within 3 miles of the log cabins.  This cuts down on the miles AND benefits our local community
  • Things that we can’t buy locally we try to buy in bulk to avoid the need to drive
  • We maximise our use of digital communications to cut down on the need to drive
  • We don’t fill our accommodation with tourism leaflets which quickly become out of date or tatty.  We encourage our guests to plan their activities via the internet before they come.
  • We highlight to our guests businesses, attractions, activities and locations which are within 30 minutes drive of our accommodation.  Cutting down on the number of miles that they drive (cutting down their stress, the impact on our roads AND the impact on our environment) and encouraging spend in our local economy.
  • We encourage our guests to ride their bikes down to Coed y Brenin using the back lanes and tracks rather than driving the 2 miles.
  • We highlight greener activities to our guests – cycling, running and walking
  • Most of our cabins are now stained rather than being painted.  The stain lasts far longer than the paint used to do therefore reducing the impact on the environment.
  • There are now recycling facilities on site and we encourage guests to recycle all that they can.
  • We are beginning to fit devices to our heaters (4 cabins converted with the next one planned) which means that they only stay on for a fixed amount of time (up to 2 hours) before switching themselves off.  This means that guests can have the cabins as warm as they like when they are in the cabin BUT the on demand heaters can’t be left on when guests go out for the day.  Don’t panic… the storage heaters still provide background heating.
  • In most cabins water is heated when needed… we don’t have hot water tanks.
  • The light bulbs in our cabins are being changed for LED bulbs where possible to reduce their impact too.
  • Our cabins are fitted with up to date TVs which use less power.

If you would like help, advice or support with running YOUR self catering property in Anglesey or Gwynedd then please get in touch with me Sue Hall at sue.hall@cadairviewlodge.co.uk 

To find out more about Cadair View Lodge accommodation in the heart of the Snowdonia National Park take a look at our website www.CadairViewLodge.co.uk

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Join Us At Cadair View Lodge Feb ’16

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Time is flying by… here we are at the end of January and looking towards February half term, Valentine’s Day and… my birthday 🙂

February in Snowdonia has lots to offer.  As in this photo from 2013, it can be crisp and clear or we could have more snow again (there’s currently just a bit more snow than this on Snowdon but if this warmth continues it could thaw).

Think about walking in the forests if the weather is a bit blowy but it’s also a great time to wrap up and walk on the beach.  Afterwards there’s always time for tea and cake.  See our Facebook page The Great Snowdonia Cake Trail for places to tempt you with their goodies!

Valentines Day is always busy as it tends to fall during February Half Term week.  Even at the busiest time we are always popular for romantic breaks with more than 150 proposals (that we know of) having taken place during stays with us.

The fishing season on Trawsfynydd Lake begins on 1st February.  Trawsfynydd is the 3rd largest lake in Wales at just under 3 miles long.  It has a cycle path around it and a cafe with lake views (and free WiFi) just off the A470.  Fishing permits can be obtained from the lakeside and boats can be hired too.  Kayaking is permitted on the lake and the cafe also have bikes for hire.  The lake is often the venue for international fishing competitions.

At the end of the month Coed y Brenin (2 miles from our log cabins) hosts The Fox Anti Freeze Enduro mountain biking event.  A a multi lap, staggered start, chip-timed challenge!  There is also a Junior Anti Freeze event for youngsters the day before – start ’em young.  The weekend before there is a yoga for mountain bikers session too to stretch the muscles.

Updates on what’s happening can be found on our What’s On page of the Cadair View Lodge website.

If you would like to visit southern Snowdonia during February 2016 (or at any other time) visit our website www.CadairViewLodge.co.uk to see what we offer and also to check out the latest deals on our log cabin accommodation.   Or call me, Sue, on 01978 759603.  There are still some “5 Nights for £200” deals available and “5 Nights for the Price of 2” (£270 per 2 bed roomed cabin) for Half Term Week (arrival on 14th February).

Guests staying with Cadair View Lodge during 2016 will (at the activity providers discretion) receive discounts of:

10% at Canolfan Tryweryn National White Water Centre

10% at Go Below Underground Adventures

10% at South Snowdonia Soft Tissue Massage Therapy

Thanks for reading and I hope to hear from you soon about a stay at Cadair View Lodge.


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Meal Out At Cross Foxes Bar Grill + Rooms

I’ve only been to the Cross Foxes (at junction of A470 + A494 south of Dolgellau) in the day time and on a grey and miserable day, so arriving in the dark gave a totally different impression.  The outside is subtly lit with the slate steps leading to the front door in-laid with blue LED lights.  Once through the front doors we were met by the homely smell of wax from candle lanterns and the smell of an open fire.

It was a mid-week night so the bar / dining room wasn’t very full but due to the layout it felt quite cosy and not as though we were in an empty space.  Whilst I’m talking about it feeling quite cosy, it was also nice and warm due to the underfloor heating.  I only know about this as the last time I was at The Cross Foxes I was attending an energy efficiency workshop and we were given a guided tour of the building to see all of the renovations and to hear about the energy efficiency measures that had been put in place.  Anyway back to the meal…

The menu isn’t huge but with the addition of the specials list there is plenty to choose from.  For starters two of us chose breaded brie with sweet chilli sauce, one chose a goats cheese and beetroot tartlet and the other chose carrot and coriander soup.  Dewi, the owner, who was looking after the bar and serving meals too, did warn that the soup had a kick to it and I’m told that he wasn’t wrong!

For main course we eventually chose battered sea bass and chips, faggots with mashed potato and two chose local pork sausages with mash.  Rachel had a good laugh at me choosing faggots… not for the reason that you might suspect.  She’s a bassoonist and the word “fagot” appears at the top of many of her musical scores (being the German word for bassoon) and the thought of a bassoon with mashed potato “tickled her”.  My faggots were lovely.  Lots of flavour and not at all dry (some that I’ve had elsewhere have been).  Everybody who had the mashed potato said that they could’ve eaten more (although we did receive a sizable portion) as it was so nice… especially mixed with the really tasty gravy.

For dessert Olli decided that he could fit in a portion of sticky toffee pudding with ice cream… but then he could eat for Britain I’m sure.  The rest of us decided that we could only fit in ice cream.  We had poor Dewi scurrying backwards and forward to the kitchen asking about flavours.  Being one to try the more unusual I had to try the Welsh Rarebit Ice-cream, and yes, it does have little chunks of Snowdonia Cheese in it and I can recommend that you try a scoop or two if you get the chance.

All in all we had a lovely evening.  The service was very relaxed, at no point did we feel rushed.  The atmosphere was cosy and warm – we certainly didn’t feel like jumping up and dashing away.  There was some Spanish music playing in the background and then The Best of the Eagles CD.  Loud enough to hear but not loud enough to be obtrusive.

If this is the usual standard of The Cross Foxes then I am not at all surprised that they have a mention in the 2012 Good Food Guide and a string of other awards.  I have no hesitation in recommending that you pay Dewi and Nichol a visit.

If you are driving to Cadair View Lodge from South Wales or from Shrewsbury direction then you will pass The Cross Foxes.  They serve dinner until 9.30pm and serve lunch from 12pm – 2.30pm (12pm – 9.30pm on a Sunday).  They also serve tea, coffee, sandwiches and cake in their cafe throughout the day.

 


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The Sound of Sky Larks + Being Hunted By Lions!

This week’s walk started from Morfa Mawddach station and headed up over the hills before finally finishing off (well finishing me off) in Llwyngwril.

As with many things in Southern Snowdonia, Arthog Falls are hidden away. In this case through an unmarked gateway – no sign, no obvious path but they are there. I’ve driven the road from Dolgellau to Friog (and beyond) many times but had never noticed the stone steps leading up from the road before. Once off the road the path heads steeply up the side of the falls, a little more steeply than my body was ready for at 8am on a Saturday morning. But the effort was well worth it (I can say in hindsight!). The river drops in a series of waterfalls and the dappled sun on the sparkling water made up for the effort of the climb. I’d love to show an image of the waterfall but my camera decided to play up so I have none. I think it was just cold as it was OK by the time we reached the top of the falls.

Top of Arthog Falls

This is the bridge at the top of the falls. The view opens out and you can finally see the magnificent scenery that surrounds you.

Walking further on and higher up we had our first view of the Mawddach Estuary below us, Barmouth, Cardigan Bay and beyond. For most of the day we could see as far as Bardsay Island but unfortunately you can’t see that far on this photo.

From this photo you can get an impression of how high we had climbed very quickly… we’d started at sea level.

As we continued to walk all that we could hear were sky larks and the occasional sheep. There wasn’t even the sound of the wind. It was quite warm in the sun and it could easily have been the middle of summer… we’ve certainly walked on worse days in summer. We talked about how the sound of sky larks brought back memories of beaches and relaxing in the sun. It’s amazing how a sound can do that for you.

We were still climbing but at a gentler pace now. These are a couple of photos looking back across towards Diffwys where we walked last week (in not such nice weather) and one towards Dolgellau and the Arans.

By the time these photos were taken we’d been walking almost 2 hours (10am) but due to the loop we’d taken to get us up the hill we were still further inland than when we’d started.

I’m sure that this is where talk of being hunted by lions began. Nick told a story of a pre-dawn walk were he could hear the sound of an animal but couldn’t work out what it was. The only sound that he could liken it to was a lion hunting (obviously been watching too many nature documentaries!). Of course it wasn’t a lion and there was a rational explanation but if you see a tabloid story about lions loose on Moel Famau… you heard it hear first.

Still climbing we finally came to a point above were the cars were parked… and we could see them – well I could see the sun shining on them. This is the view from above Morfa Mawddach.

You can see by this photo that we had climbed a fair old way.

This view-point is slightly off the main path. We did a slight detour to see a memorial plaque that is at this point. The memorial is to 20 US airmen who were killed when their B17G Flying Fortress crashed into the mountain in June 1945. This is just one of many World War II aircraft crash sites in Snowdonia.

Soon after this point we lost sight of the coast and passed what I always refer to as “the spooky forest” (due to all of the abandoned vehicles in the middle of it) and through Cwm Llwyd. Although not a million miles from civilisation when you are up there you are in, what appears to be, complete wilderness. Again the only thing that we could hear, apart from us squelching through the occasional wet bit, was the sky larks.

Eventually after a few more gates, a couple of very high stiles and some new-born lamb spotting we arrived in Llwyngwril.

We enjoyed a great walk in wonderful weather and walked the best part of 6 hours without seeing another person… not many places in Britain that you can do that.

To see more photos from the walk and get a different perspective check out


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Testimonial Heddychol – 9th September 2010

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We just wanted to say thank you for a lovely warm welcome at Heddlychol lodge. The welcome pack was much appreciated too, especially the cookies that Ronnie munched straight away! hahaha
The lodge was so comfortable and cosy with beautiful furnishings and the added touch of fairy lights in the sun room made it quite magical for our little boy. We fed the birds, chatted to the rabbits who stopped by for yummy grass every morning and hooted to the owls at night. So peaceful. The secluded aspect was also ideal. The weather wasn’t too kind to us but thankfully our last evening was clear and dry and marvelled at the night sky for hours. As you can tell, we loved staying at Cadair View Holiday Village and look forward to booking another holiday with you again.


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Testimonial – Swn yr Nant 29th May 2010

Photo of outside of Swn y Nant

Swn y Nant a Cadair View Lodge Ltd log cabin in Snowdonia

We’ve just had the most awesome half term holiday at Swn y Nant log cabin =) the most stunning views from the cabin and beautiful sunshine. We tackled Snowdon the hard way and enjoyed the fab tracks around Coed y Brenin.. m’boys did black route v.proud of themselves indeed, while we girlies enjoyed pony trekking along… the beach. Looking forward to going back in 2011

See Swn y Nant for yourself


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Testimonial – Haulfryn – 5th June

We would both like to thank you for a really great enjoyable stay. We will definitely be coming back I have converted my partner to staying at a lodge. He thought it would be like a caravan. We loved the mountain views and the freedom to come and go as we pleased.
We are both extremely proud of the fact that we climbed to the top of Cadair Idris!!!! The views were outstanding and we felt really proud of our achievement.
Looking forward to our next stay probably in the Autumn.

View from living area of Haulfryn