May 17,18, 2011
Tuesday morning was still grey skies. We had a very filling breakfast. Lots of variety and lots of food! Mike had a full English breakfast and I had some warm croissants. We also had fruit.
Before leaving the area, we went up the road to get a photo of Greystoke Castle, since our B&B was on their grounds. There has been a castle on this site for hundreds of years but I think it has been updated.
We decided to drive through the Lake District instead of going straight over to the motorway. We went from Keswick down to Windemere. If the weather had been nicer we would have taken some time to wander around a bit. Also Mike didn't realize that it didn't take too long to get to Wales. In any case, we were a bit sorry for all the hikers that were around the Lake District (there were lots!) as the weather was rainy.
We got onto the M6 and drove the motorway right to Conwy, Wales. It was a very direct and easy route. We left Greystoke around 8:30, crossed the England/Wales border at 11:15 and entered Conwy at around 1:00 in the afternoon. Once you pass through the town walls the street follows the walls around the town in a clockwise one way system. We followed it around back to the street nearest the harbour but inside the walls. Our B&B was here and we found it okay. I knew that the private parking was at the back and we turned up the little street only to find a hydro truck blocking the way. Because the street is so small and narrow (and one way), there was no way around him to get to the parking until such time as he was done. So I jumped out and rang the doorbell of the B&B and the owner, Jonathan answered. He came and asked the hydro man when he thought he would be done, but he didn't know. So Jonathan suggested we find a place to park in town for a bit and then return.
We headed up to the castle because there was a parking lot right beside it. We put enough money in the meter for a couple of hours and then decided to take a walk around the castle walls. We brought our lunch cooler and ate whatever we had in it for lunch while watching the birds around the castle. There were a lot of jackdaws in town. Apparently they have a long history with Conwy.
We didn't go in the castle as we decided the next day would just be a non-driving day and we would do it then. We would have liked to drive to Carnaerfon Castle or Mount Snowdonia, but Mike was starting to get tired from all the driving, so we figured a day in town was better.
I walked down to the B&B and found that the hydro man was gone, so we brought the car around and parked it in a small little private car park. Jonathan showed up our rooms. Our B&B was very well situated and it was cool to be inside the town walls. That afternoon we walked the whole length of the walls.
We went to supper at the Fisherman's Chip Shop. Mike had fish and chips and so did I but my fish was salmon. It was different with battered salmon but I really liked it. £16.90
We then waited for dark and then headed out with my camera and tripod. I wanted to get some photos of the castle lit up. We had scouted out some potential spots earlier. We thought it would work on the other side of the castle, but when we went after dark, we found they didn't light up that side, so only one tall tower was lit. I still took some shots. Others were taken from the street and the town walls. I also took some photos of the town, harbour and the street we were staying on. I really like how the photos turned out. It also happened to be a full moon!
On Wednesday, we had breakfast with a mother and daughter staying at the B&B who were also from Ontario. They were leaving Wales that day and heading to Scotland.
We decided to visit Plas Mawr first since it opened the earliest. It is an old medieval house, with the original plasterwork. We were allowed to take photos inside, so that was great. It was a really interesting house. Then we went to Aberconwy House, which might be the oldest house in the town (around 1300). It was quite small inside so there wasn't as much to see. Plas Mawr was quite large.
We visited the local butcher shop and got some bread and meat for a picnic lunch, although we decided it was easier to go back to the B&B and eat it in the breakfast room which was a conservatory. It had rained first thing in the morning, but cleared up by lunch.
After lunch we headed over to Conwy Castle for a couple of hours. It is quite a big castle built by Edward I as he tried to conquer Wales.
I went in the smallest house in Great Britain. It is so small, they only let a couple people in at a time to see it.
For supper we went to George and the Dragon. We were on the restaurant side rather than the pub side and had it to ourselves. I had spinach and ricotta canneloni. Mike wanted the hot pot but they were out so he had something else instead, but I can't remember what.
We repacked our bags that evening and cleaned out the car. We were catching the ferry in the morning and needed to return the car. So we had to find a place in our bags for all the things we had collected over the last 13 days.