23 Dec Shropshire and North Wales: From England to Wales
It took a few hours to drive from London towards the Northwest. By the time we reached Shrewsbury, the county town of Shropshire, it was already noon. Shrewsbury had medieval street patterns and many narrow streets and passages. Their buildings were mostly in black and white. When I first saw them, they reminded me of ’Tudor Court’ in Singapore. It turned out to be similar style of architecture from the Tudor era.
We visited the Abbey, a religious place which was there since 1083. Much of the Abbey had been destroyed but the nave survived and still serves as a parish church today.
From the town centre to British Ironwork Centre was less than 30mins by car. It’s free admission and there was a stunning collection of animal sculptures made of metal. There was a indoor showroom and you could buy anything there as long as you can afford what’s shown on the price tag.
After this, we carried on our journey towards the north. By the time we reached, it was already evening and getting dark.
Wales is a country that is part of the United Kingdom and the island of Great Britain. So if you know anyone who’s born in Wales, in the UK, don’t call them English, they are Welsh.
Llandudno, “Queen of the Welsh Resorts”
Llandudno is a seaside town, it’s now the largest seaside resort in Wales. Along the seafront, North Shore, there is a wide curving promenade. In the Victorian times, it was fashionable to visit seaside resorts and the promenade was an area where people would go for a walk to ‘be seen’ and be considered part of the society.
It was cool and breezy to stroll on the promenade, a very long stretch of it. There was a pier (Llandudno Pier) with a bar, a cafe, amusement arcades, children’s rides and shops.
From the pier, we took a stroll to The Happy Valley where it’s on the eastern side of the Great Orme. It is a park dedicated to the town of Llandudno by Lord Mostyn in 1887 in celebration of the Golden Jubilee of Queen Victoria. The parks had a few ‘Alice in Wonderland’ wooden sculptures.
From here, take a walk up to the Camera Obscura to catch a great panoramic view of the town.
We took the vintage Great Orme tram to go up to the summit. The views were really breathtaking as the tram ascends, and descends. It was very windy and cold but all was worth it. We managed to seek refuge from the cold for a while in the cafe and had Welsh cakes and hot coffee.
Llandudno town centre was rather small with shops and restaurants. We stumbled upon an antique shop selling furnitures and all sorts of interesting things. On a side note, we noticed that we were one of the youngest couple on the streets, apart from babies and kids.
Conwy Town and Snowdonia
Conwy is a World Heritage town. This town with its historic buildings is wrapped by a string of well-preserved walls from the medieval times.
In the heart of the town lies the 13th-century Conwy Castle. The now-ruined castle played an important part in several wars and withstood sieges from enemies.
UNESCO considers Conwy to be one of ‘the finest examples of late 13th century and early 14th century military architecture in Europe”, and it is classed as a World Heritage site.
We had a walk along Conwy Quay
And came to The Smallest House In Great Britain.
The house was lived in until 1900, when the tenant was a 6-foot-3-inch (1.91 m) fisherman named Robert Jones. The rooms were too small for him to stand up in fully and he was eventually forced to move out when the council declared the house unfit for human habitation. The house is still owned by his descendants.
Needless to say, it was also very cramped for both Lyndon and me when we went in. Just a very tiny sitting area on the first level and a very small room with a bed and a cabinet on the second level.
The weather wasn’t fantastic when we drove to Snowdonia. It was extremely windy and drizzling slightly. It was rather fun despite the challenges of walking on large rocks.
A trip to North Wales can be refreshing after seeing so much flashy things in a modern city. You can immerse in nature, acquaint yourself with Welsh history and also spend time relaxing at the seaside resort.