Anglesey (Isle of) Attractions
The Isle of Anglesey, separated from the mainland by the 0.75mi/1.2km wide Menai Strait, is spanned by two imposing bridges: the Menai Suspension Bridge (1818-26) and a two level bridge opened in 1970 which has the roadway above the railroad and which rests on the pillars of a former structure. Along the coast are a series of small seaside resorts which have grown out of fishing villages. Apart from five market towns there are only tiny villages, linked by narrow roads on the island.In addition to its mild climate and fresh sea air, Anglesey is blessed with over a hundred miles of exceedingly attractive coastline. The rugged cliffs are interrupted at intervals by picturesque sandy bays while, inland, hills provide fertile pasture for vast flocks of sheep.There is doubt about the interpretation of Anglesey as the "Island of Angels".
Holy Island, which is linked with Anglesey by two bridges, is an increasingly popular holiday resort. Two promenades, one being on the 1.5mi/2.4km-long breakwater, and Salt Island afford interesting views of the rocky coast where large numbers of seabirds nest.
The principal town is Holyhead on the neighboring Holy Island to the west of the Isle of Anglesey, from which there are ferry services to Dublin (Republic of Ireland).The direct road across the island to Bangor from Holyhead via the small town of Menai Bridge (pop. 2,540), is not of interest, and it is preferable to take the road round the coast.
A splendid panorama can be enjoyed from Holyhead Mountain (710ft/216m), on the top of which are a fort and the remains of a small chapel (the only survivor of six or seven which originally stood here). These chapels are said to have earned the island its name of "Holy"; but this interpretation is open to doubt, since in earlier times the local people were predominantly Welsh speaking, as many of them still are.
Of historical interest are the Cytiau'r Gwyddelod on Holy Island, remains of stone dwellings dating from pre-Christian times.
Trearddur Bay (2.5mi/4km from Holyhead; pop. 1,500), is a well-known seaside resort with a good golf course.
Beaumaris (pop. 2,080), about 10mi/16km northeast of Bangor, is a popular seaside resort and yachting center (regatta in August). Other features of interest in the town are the parish church (14th century nave), County Hall (1614) and the Old Jail.
Beaumaris Castle, a magnificent moated edifice with sturdy walls and defensive towers, is well worth visiting. Begun in 1295 it was the last and largest of the fortresses which Edward I built in Wales (a display in the chapel tower details the story of their construction). Ring walls some 16.5ft/5m thick with solid corner towers enclose the square inner courtyard.A water-filled moat presents an impressive first-line defense outside the ring of walls. The Chapel Tower houses an exhibition on the castles of Edward I.
Address: Castle Street, Beaumaris LL58 8AP, Wales
Opening hours: Mar 1 to Jun 30: 9:30am-5pm
Jul 1 to Aug 31: 9:30am-6pm
Sep 1 to Oct 31: 9:30am-5pm
Jul 1 to Aug 31: 9:30am-6pm
Sep 1 to Oct 31: 9:30am-5pm
Always closed on: New Year's Day (Jan 1), Christmas Eve - Christian (Dec 24), Christmas - Christian (Dec 25), Day after Christmas, St Stephen's Day, Boxing Day (Dec 26)
Entrance fee in GBP: Family £11.00, Adult £3.80, Concession or reduced rate £3.40
Useful tips: Family (up to 2 adults and 3 children) Last admission one half hour before close.
Weekend of Song and Dance
This annual weekend festival takes place in late May at the Beaumaris Castle. The program includes performances by Welsh and other folk song and dance troupes.
Priestholm (Puffin Island)
The little offshore island of Priestholm (also called Puffin Island) is the nesting-place of countless seabirds.
Red Wharf Bay
In Red Wharf Bay is the little seaside resort of Benllech.
The circular tour of Angelsey passes through Pentreath (pop. 690), with its beautiful sandy beach.
1mi/1.6km away from Red Wharf Bay is the quiet and unspoiled fishing village of Moelfre.
Within easy reach of Beaumaris are the little market towns of Llanerchymedd and Llangefni, the administrative center of Anglesey.
Lligwy is a small market town which was once a fortified village of the late Roman period.
Amlwch, a little market town and a seaside resort (pop. 2,910), was of some importance in the early 19th century as the port of shipment for the copper from the Parys mines, which were already being worked in Roman times.
Bull Bay offers excellent bathing and fishing.
Cemaes Bay, Wales
West of Bull Bay the coast becomes higher and more rugged. There are good bathing beaches between the rocks in Cemaes Bay.
The coast is particularly wild at Carmel Head, the northwest tip of Holy Island.
The seaside resort of Rhosneigr has sand dunes and rocky bays (boating, fishing, golf). Llangwyfan Old Church can be reached on foot at low tide.
There is good bathing at Aberffraw and Malltraeth Bay.
Newborough Warren is an interesting nature reserve with sand dunes and maritime plants in abundance.
Anglesey claims the village with the longest name in Britain: Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllandysiliogogogoch (58 letters;0.5mi/0.8km from Menai Bridge). Roughly translated the name means "by the church of St Mary in the hollow of white aspen over a rapid whirlpool and St Tysilio's Church close to the red cave". It is usually known as Llanfair PG.
Llanfairpwllgwyngyll - James Pringle Weavers
James Pringle Weavers features two very rare miniature steam trains as part of a Victorian Railway theme center. It is located in a famous railroad station: Llanfairpwllgwyngyll Station.
Plas Newydd, Llanfair PG, Wales
Plas Newydd, a 15th C mansion standing in spacious parkland just 2mi/3km southwest of Llanfair PG, came into the possession of the Earls of Uxbridge and later the Marquises of Anglesey in 1784. At the end of the 18th C the house was extensively rebuilt by James Wyatt, who also designed the very elaborate fan vaulting in the music room and the hall. Among several museum pieces in the house are a mural by the English artist Rex Whistler and the patented "Anglesey leg", a wooden leg made for the first Marquis of Anglesey after the Battle of Waterloo. It was one of the earliest artificial limbs.