by Menai Holidays
If you speak to any local about what they like best about the Llŷn Peninsula they mention the “shoulder” months of the year, namely April to June and September through to October. However, the thing about North Wales is that it’s lovely at different times of the year for different reasons. Even in “silly” season when some of the towns and villages are at their busiest, you can still find solitude and beaches to yourselves. We’ve been the only family on the beach on a hot August afternoon, it just takes a little bit of insider knowledge and maybe a map to find the perfect spot.
We all lead busy lives and for me, a perfect day out is to see very few people (maybe slightly anti-social I know) and spend time with those that I love, doing things that we enjoy. The Llŷn Peninsula is the ideal place for this.
A perfect day out would ideally begin with the sun shining, but it’s not essential! Our day usually begins at around 7.30am. My mum always used to refer to this as the best time of the day, when I was a teenager lying in bed. As I’m getting older I now see what she means, especially when you wake up by the sea. When the sun is out we literally get up, throw on some old clothes over our swimmers and head to our favourite spot for a BBQ breakfast on the beach. Our favourite spot being “Quarry Beach” which is at the end of our lane in the village of Llanbedrog. It’s accessed via a lane that leaves the road into Abersoch and the place we like best is tucked under the rock face of Llanbedrog headland, close to the old quarry.
Breakfast is in no way a sophisticated affair, but that’s how we like it. We take our tiny portable BBQ, which has seen better days, some bottled water and whatever is left in the fruit bowl and pitch upon the sand. At this time of day, we’re usually the only ones on the beach except for a few keen joggers and, more recently, some early rising yoga enthusiasts. It’s sheltered and stunning with views over to St. Tuwal’s Islands across the bay. Breakfast would usually be followed by a quick dip and some amateur “bouldering” for the children and we’re back home by 10am, ready for the rest of the day.
The north and south coast of the Llŷn Peninsula can often be quite different in how they feel on any given day. I love the feel of the north coast. When the wind is in the south we pack up the car and head over to Whistling Sands. It’s a great surf spot and with the children only learning, the waves are small and consistent when the swell direction is southwesterly. One of the fab things about this beach is that from March through to October, there is a great café right on the sand, serving everything from tea to pizzas and all your beach essentials. If the children get cold in the water, they can grab a hot chocolate and warm up on the patio under a towel. If there isn’t surf and we’ve packed a picnic we’d make our way along the coast to Porth Iago.
A stunning sheltered cove, perfect for a spot of snorkelling. On a summer’s day there are rarely more than 10 people on the beach and if this is too overcrowded for your liking, a short walk along the coast in either direction takes you to other coves, equally as beautiful, with even fewer or no one on at all. If you take the coastal path west you will walk past some pools and inlets that look more like the coast of Corfu that Wales. This is also a great place for a spot of rock pooling, so we take our buckets and nets. The children are kept busy for hours.
With the sand between our toes and the afternoon sun lowering in the sky, we like to head over to the fishing village of Aberdaron. The perfect end to a perfect day out is to visit one of the lovely local pubs that serve real ales or a nice G&T. One of the most exciting additions in recent years is the fabulous Sblash Fish and Chip shop. Here you can take a bottle of wine and enjoy delights such as lobster, caught only yards from the beach, and chips. The children love it in here. The huge fish tank inside plus the bright, fun interior and crayons galore make it really family friendly.
One of the great things about being based on the Llŷn Peninsula is that everywhere is very accessible and within about half an hour you can be anywhere on the Peninsula. It makes is a great place for even a short break because you can fit a lot in without spending hours in the car, which is a bonus with kids!
Another huge plus is that there are so many “natural” forms of entertainment. You can have a wonderful, fun-filled day with your children for the cost of a picnic and perhaps parking in a National Trust car park, oh and maybe a G&T at sunset on the beach. Otherwise, it’s good, old-fashioned fun through and through. Just the way we like it!
View holiday cottages on the Llŷn Peninsula right here.
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