Waking up on Sunday morning to glorious sunshine was not what we expected on a November morning in Wales. Thankfully it was what we got.
Having had a busy Saturday we planned to take things easy on the Sunday. The only problem with easy Sundays is that sometimes you end up being busier than if you had planned things. This Sunday followed that description.
With too many places we wanted to see we narrowed down the list based on three things: proximity (we didn’t want to go too far), uniqueness (we wanted something we couldn’t find elsewhere) and child friendliness. We also ruled out a few places for not being dog friendly – Portmeirion being one.
However after researching and planning we decided to throw caution to the wind and get in the car and drive. It wasn’t a great plan. We did see stunning scenery as we drove through Snowdonia National Park, especially the trees were in glorious Autumn colours. We also came across some lovely quaint villages with gorgeous houses that looked straight out of a painting. What we also found was quite a few of our potential stops were closed on Sundays.
Our Saturday adventures can be found here.
We eventually pulled in to Dolwyddelan Castle. It looked stunning sat on a hill and a great place to explore. Sadly a few steps out of the car park was a sign saying ‘Guide Dogs Only’. We were gutted. It meant turning around and trying to coax two excitable girls back into the car. Snacks were our saviour.
Undeterred we headed off and in less than 10 minutes came across the town of Dolwyyddelan. Pulling into a carpark than promised river walks and scenic picnic spots we though we had our morning sorted. We were wrong. The walk to the river was short, the picnic spot was a few tables with the view of train tracks. In short it was not what we wanted.
After the second unsuccessful stop we decided that heading back to our cottage was the best plan. That way we could all eat, regroup and put a better plan in place. It also meant Annabelle could nap.
The afternoon was the very opposite to the morning. Our plan making didn’t go well but we agreed that we wanted to explore more of where we were staying. That way Bisbee could run free and Annabelle didn’t have to go back in the car.
After nap time we made home-made pizza’s, something Annabelle enjoyed getting involved in and we all enjoyed eating 🙂
We started our afternoon walk the same way we did the first walk. Heading up the hill from the cottage towards the hill covered in waterfalls. This time we went a different direction though. With the river gushing nearby we headed over to get a good look. That took us in the direction of a slate mine and Cwmorthin Waterfall.
The first part of the walk to the waterfall was steep and the route was covered in slate. This made it slippy under foot at times but made it feel like we were on an adventure. The scenery was breathtaking. If we had our time again we would have driven to the car-park at the base and saved ourselves the 20 minute walk. It would have made the incline easier to handle. Instead we were huffing and puffing after 15 minutes of walking uphill. It was worth it though.
We didn’t make it to the top, partly as the evening was getting darker, partly because we wanted to make it back for fireworks and partly because we knew we still had to walk back to the cottage. It didn’t matter though. Even walking 30 minutes up towards Cwmortin had been worth it. We felt invigorated.
On the walk back we passed the firework set up and had to avoid being charged to get back to our cottage on the other side.
A quick change, a few more layers and some food in our belly’s we were heading back out to the fireworks. With a start time of 6.15pm we thought it would mean Annabelle would be okay to enjoy the display. Sadly we were wrong. Either Annabelle is not into fireworks or she is not into being outside close to her 7pm bedtime. We thoroughly enjoyed the display though.
It was amazing to stroll all of 5 minutes back to the cottage and be back in front of the warm fire.
The next morning we were up and packed and ready to head home. Before leaving we headed back to the cafe at the dam to enjoy a delicious steak sandwich and cooked breakfast. It also gave Annabelle and Bisbee a chance to let of steam before we started our journey.
As nap time approached we bundled into the and drove until Annabelle woke up. It meant we reached Shrewsbury. We decided to get out, explore and find lunch. Our exploration took us through the old streets, into the old square and to the English Bridge over the river.
Our last stop was ‘Say Cheese‘ a food stop selling grilled cheese in a number of amazing ways. With marinara, with onion chutney, with bacon and lots of other delicious things. Their mac and cheese is incredible and everything is really reasonably priced! Well worth a visit if you are near Shrewsbury.
From there we headed back to Birmingham with The Wiggles entertaining Annabelle.
Our getaway had been perfect.