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Stress free Christmas shopping

It's in the bag: Christmas shopping on the Llŷn Peninsula

Anyone who knows me knows that I LOVE to shop. However with Christmas just around the corner, making the trip to a city centre armed with a list, two bored young children and a husband who doesn’t share my enthusiasm for the sport, does not make for a great family day out! So this year I decided to “go local” and I can smugly say that I have almost completed my Christmas shopping without leaving the region. I spent a few glorious hours on my own, with my list, in the towns along the south coast of the Llŷn Peninsula and ended up enjoying a hot chocolate at the base of Harlech castle. Here are a few of my favourite shops in the region that you need to visit in the coming weeks.

Gwin Llyn Wines is a family owned, independent wine and spirits merchant based in Pwllheli. What owners Dean and Margaret don’t know about wine isn’t worth knowing. I could spend hours in this incredible shop reading the hand written descriptions on each bottle. Margaret puts together some great “presents” for Christmas including a beautifully packaged Christmas Day Wine Selection that I will be taking back to my parents this year.

Lavender House on the road between Pwllheli and Llanbedrog is another shop that I could get lost in for hours. The stock is incredible and it’s packed full of beautiful cushions, lamps and home décor. Christmas is a special time in Lavender House and the whole warehouse is lit with twinkly lights. It’s full of everything from stocking fillers to a four poster beds!

Toys obviously feature a lot on my list. With two young girls, our house has been overtaken by bright pink, which is why a trip in to Glosters in Porthmadog is a breath of fresh air. Along with stunning handmade pottery and home wares, they stock beautiful wooden and soft toys that make the perfect gift and are a step away from flashing plastic!


Kerfoots in Porthmadog is a great place to stop for a bite to eat and enables me to tick more off my list. The family owned department store first opened their doors back in 1874 and stock all of the big name brands in homewares, cookery, clothing and much more. They even have an in house nail bar and hair salon. The team bend over backwards to help you and offer a convenient “click and collect” or “phone and collect” service if you are pushed for time. Their hampers are pretty special too!

Continuing down the coast I head for Cae Du Designs in Harlech where I found a present for my sister who has recently moved house. Situated in Blue Lion Square in the centre of the town, owner Dee Bentham stocks hundreds of metres of beautiful fabrics including linens, cottons, wools and silks. They also source unusual designer fabrics including silk embroideries, plaids, ginghams, stripes and weaves. I was on the look-out for a throw and some cushions and Cae Du Designs didn’t disappoint.

Nestled in the centre of Harlech is the gorgeous Llew Glas Café. It was my final stop before driving home. I only popped in for a hot chocolate and came out laden with bottles of artisan olive oil, perfect for my newly married brother who fancies himself as a chef.

I not only virtually completed my Christmas shopping in a day, I actually enjoyed it! Along the way I added a few things to my own Christmas “wish” list. However, after a hectic year, what I would like more that anything is a long weekend away. Here at Menai Holiday Cottages we also offer a voucher for a loved one that enables them to pick a cottage for themselves. What better gift to open on Christmas morning?

 Click here to take a look at our cottages on the Llŷn Peninsula - perfectly situated for a Christmas shopping trip like mine!

Monday 16 November 2015