About Llandudno beaches
This remarkably fine resort is the star of Wales’ beach-lined northern coast. Stately Llandudno has preserved its Victorian airs and graces, and is as ideal for family fun as it is for partying pensioners. Great Orme’s Head and Little Orme are large limestone hillocks flanking the town, giving the setting some topographical drama, whilst inland there are the wonders of Snowdonia.
Llandudno’s crescent of sand-and-shingle Blue Flag North Shore beach is backed by a wide, graceful promenade, lined by the town’s dignified and handsome cream-cake architecture. There’s a long 19th-century pier jutting into the water. The Blue Flag West Shore is a quieter sandy beach.
Beyond the beach:
Take in the stunning views of the area and hop on the longest cable car in Britain. The Llandudno Cable Car glides from Happy Valley up to the summit of Great Orme, offering panoramic views of Llandudno, Little Orme, Conwy Estuary and beyond. From the summit, visitors will also be able to catch a glimpse of Puffin Island and Snowdonia.
Besides the beach, there are amusements on the pier, which is a good spot for fishing too. You can also take speedboat trips or cruises from the bay. On the shore, the town offers other excitements: the steep, cable-hauled Great Orme Tramway (www.greatormetramway.com) – a little bit of San Francisco in North Wales – clanks up to the Great Orme Copper Mines (www.greatormemines.co.uk). The mines date from the Bronze Age, and you can have a guided tour, with hard hats and miners’ lamps provided. The Orme also has a dry-ski slope (www.llandudnoskislope.co.uk), with toboggan run and great views. There’s also a Cable Car to the summit of the Orme, offering awesome panoramas over jewel-green countryside and out to sea.
You’re in the Snowdonia National Park here, so it would be rude not to head inland to some of the most beautiful, epic countryside that the UK has to offer. Visit the cobbled town of Conwy on the way, with its majestic castle, and then head up into the hills, to Betws-y-Coed, a pretty, popular walkers’ hub, 19km (12 miles) northeast of Mount Snowdon.
For baroque seaside splendour, Osborne House (www.osbornehouse.co.uk), on the Llandudno seafront, fits the bill. Rooms are all chaises longues, opulent beds, and sea views. The cafe-cum restaurant is open to non-guests, and the menu, with fine comfort foods such as lamb with mash and rosemary jus, makes an ideal match for the candlelit and gilt-lined space.