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48hrs in Anglesey - what to do on a family weekend in Beaumaris

Situated on Anglesey’s south easterly tip, Beaumaris is a popular seaside town drawing in holiday-makers and day trippers, as well as being a fully functioning hub with a year-round residential population. Unlike other Welsh holiday resorts, Beaumaris really does have a heart and soul; beloved by locals and tourists alike thanks in part to its vast array of independent shops and eateries, a delightful wooden pier and seafront promenade, along with a rich and diverse history.

Often described as the jewel in Anglesey’s crown; the bustling town of Beaumaris makes the ideal weekend destination for your 48hrs in Anglesey, thanks in part to its convenient location. Popular as a stop off after travelling to or arriving from Ireland via the Port of Holyhead, as well as being easily reached via public transport from the mainland train station of Bangor. If driving, the main A55 dissects the island of Anglesey and connects it to North Wales, and beyond. Beaumaris can be easily reached via a short 20 minute undulating drive after crossing the Menai Straits.

For our 48hrs in Anglesey itinerary, with the kids in tow, we were kindly hosted by the Pilot House, located in the West End of Beaumaris. This stunning double-fronted Georgian property is a stone’s throw from the seafront and I short 5-minute walk to the town’s centre. Split over two and a half floors, Pilot House is a luxury holiday rental best suited to multi-generational families and larger groups. Sleeping eight people comfortably in four bedrooms, it makes the ideal family-friendly base to spend 48hrs in Anglesey and the perfect place from which to explore all that Beaumaris has to offer.

Jenny
November 15, 2021

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Friday afternoon in Beaumaris

If time allows a leisurely drive from your home to Anglesey, then I absolutely recommend making time to stop at various points along the way. For those keen on walking, Aber Falls is an ideal, manageable walk to stretch your legs after a long drive. Park in the designated car park and enjoy the stunning scenery as you make the 3-mile circular walk to the impressive falls themselves. This walk is do-able with children and is categorised as accessible however, I would recommend a baby carrier for younger babies.

After completing the walk, you could head to Penhryn Castle, a delightful National Trust property on the outskirts of Bangor, to enjoy a picnic or instead, make your way to Dylan’s Restaurant at Menai Bridge for a late lunch. My advice here would be to make a slight detour to Bangor Pier, a pretty wooden jetty maintained impeccably by the Friends of Bangor Pier. Safe for little ones to run and scoot on, it is the best place for crabbing (in my humble opinion) and each of the colourful kiosks offers something different; a coffee shop, gift shop, ice cream parlour and crabbing essentials.

Cross onto Anglesey via the Menai Bridge; more often used by locals, it is often much quieter particularly during the rush hour periods. Dylans’s Restaurant is tucked away on the water’s edge, a couple of minutes from the bridge and a great place to begin your 48hrs in Anglesey. This family-friendly eatery is fantastic for seafood, wood-fired pizzas and modern dishes using fresh, local ingredients. If you still have space after your delicious lunch, pop to the Red Boat kiosk just outside the main door for some ice cream and a opportunity to look at the Menai Bridge in all its glory.

After lunch in Menai Bridge, take time to enjoy a stroll along the Belgian Promenade and around the shops before making your way towards Beaumaris. As you drive, ensure you look out for Plas Cadnant, a hidden garden worth a visit during the Spring/Summer months and the smoke-breathing dragon at Chateau Rhianfa, a lovely place to visit for a special occasion or Afternoon Tea. As you appear out of the woodland, Beaumaris comes into view. The pretty pastel townhouses greet you as the coastline opens up and the medieval castle peeps around the corner.

Although we have visited Beaumaris so many times, I still get a flurry of excitement as we arrive, knowing all the fun we are going to have.

Friday evening in Beaumaris

On arrival at Pilot House, your home for 48hrs in Anglesey, park up outside and take a step through the front door; I guarantee your first impressions will leave you speechless. This impeccable, cosy yet stylish townhouse, in the town’s Conservation Area, really is a sight to be seen. Set over 2 and a half floors, the Pilot House is a Grade II listed property simply oozing character at every turn. Korina, the property owner has personally designed it with style-conscious couples, groups and families in mind. There is a vast open-plan kitchen/diner which opens out onto a rear patio and BBQ area. The first-floor lounge enjoys uninterrupted views of the sea and there are four individually-styled double bedrooms.

After unloading, you maybe able to catch the last of the light depending on the seasons. Cross the road and after a little hop over the flood defence, you are on the beach. Depending on the tide times, you can stretch your legs here or if the tide is in, make the short walk along the pathway to Beaumaris Pier and promenade. The beauty of staying in Beaumaris for your 48hrs in Anglesey is the incredible views you receive; looking back over the water towards the Snowdonia National Park and the North Wales coastline beyond. You can see all the way to Llandudno on a clear day.

If you fancy a little welcome drink, both The Bull and Liverpool Arms are welcoming options or you may decide to potter along the high street and collect some provisions ahead of the weekend stay. Again, depending on the time you arrive, Tredici is a fantastic deli and butcher where you can collect fresh produce. There is also a handy bakery just off the main drag called Central Bakery and for larger shops, a Waitrose at Menai Bridge. If you are after a Friday night takeaway then I recommend the Dockshack, where you can also sit in, or head down to the water’s edge to enjoy your fish and chips.

Saturday morning in Beaumaris

On the first morning of your 48hrs in Anglesey, you will be greeted by a faint chorus of seagulls and waves lapping. I can guarantee you will have had the best night’s sleep in any one of the four incredibly comfortable double beds and will be hungry for Breakfast. Make yourself a coffee from the Nespresso machine and head either into the lounge or take a seat outside the front of the house where you can just sit for a while and watch the world come to life. As the sun rises and the daylight creeps in, once again you will greeted by the most beautiful views of the sea, sound of the waves lapping and the ever-changing mountain views beyond.

If you fancy fresh bread or pastries for breakfast, take the short stroll around the corner to Central Bakery which opens at 8am. You maybe expected to queue, thanks to its popularity, so it’s advisable to ring ahead if you want something specifically like a bacon sandwich. In the warmer months, there is ample outside seating to relax in at the Pilot House, both in the landscaped rear patio area and out the front of the property. On cooler days, simply throw open the bifold doors and take a seat at the breakfast bar or dining table.

After breakfast, the possibilities are endless; you could choose to spend your morning exploring more of what the town of Beaumaris has to offer. The Medieval Castle and grounds are close by alongside the Old Gaol and Courthouse, with combination tickets for the latter, available to buy from either attraction. For those with children, there is an excellent playground in the shadows of the castle from where you can also pick up fresh coffee and homemade cakes at the Happy Valley Cafe. There are some easy walks to enjoy here locally including the beach opposite towards Gallows Point and the Mill Lane Falls, a short walk from the Pilot House front door.

Saturday afternoon in Beaumaris

For lunch, you may prefer to enjoy a picnic while sitting on the pier or visit Beaus Tearooms on the high street and revel in a traditional afternoon tea, lunch or cake while sitting among displays of knitted teacosies and collections of tea services. On a warm day, you could choose instead to take a table outside at the Pier House Bistro or within the grounds of the Bulkeley Hotel with a table in the garden, under the palms, overlooking the pier and seafront.

After lunch, wander around all the independent shops; children will love the toy and sweet shops from where they can spend any accumulated pocket money. For adults, there are curiosity and clothing shops a plenty including the Janet Bell Gallery and 27 independent shops within The Exchange. A stop at Jolly’s is a must for coffee-lovers and the selection of stunning cakes will leave you spoiled for choice. Set in an old bank building, be sure to have a nosy in the vault as you make your way to the toilet downstairs.

Once fed, watered and shopped out, you could maybe hit the pier for a spot of crabbing or alternatively, jump in the car and take the short drive to Penmon Point. This lighthouse on the south-easterly tip of Anglesey is a great place to visit with kids. For a small toll-road charge, £3 cash, you can spend all day here. The cobbled beach is the perfect place for stone skimming and tower building with the nearby Pilot House Cafe providing the snack, drinks and ice cream.

Saturday evening in Beaumaris

After a busy day out exploring Beaumaris and surrounds, it is time to relax and take it easy. For ease, make a booking at the Coast Restaurant at The Bull pub. This traditional pub on the high street opens up into a modern restaurant towards the rear. Here settle in and enjoy a sumptuous meal and a glass of wine. Completely family-friendly, the restaurant has an excellent children’s menu, I recommend the kid’s fish and chips. For the adults, a seasonal seafood special is a guaranteed win or the tasty Bull Burger from the Main menu.

Following your meal, you could choose to enjoy a nightcap around the roaring fire in the pub or take the 5-minute stroll back to Pilot House to light the log burner and break open the family board games located in the lounge cupboard.
For those looking for a more intimate meal, without children, the sophisticated surrounds of The Midland tapas restaurant is recommend. Further afield, The Gazelle just up the road towards Menai Bridge sits on the water’s edge and during the Summer months, has live music on their outside terrace. This place is an absolute must when spending 48hrs in Anglesey and a great choice for Sunday lunch.

Sunday morning in Beaumaris

Slow Sundays are a must at the Pilot House! Rustle up an hearty breakfast using locally-bought produce from Tredici’s butchers and of course, bread from Central Bakery. Make sure to buy ahead of time as the bakery is closed on a Sunday! Jolly’s is open from 9.30am to wander up and pick up a takeaway coffee, before enjoying it all sat on the outside terrace or at the beautiful dining table with the bifolds thrown open.

After breakfast take a seat in one of the lounge windows’ and breath in the sea view while planning your final day in Beaumaris. During the warmer months, it maybe worth booking a wildlife cruise to Puffin Island or an adrenaline-packed rib ride along the Menai Straits, suitably for those with older children. Beaumaris is the ideal base to explore the Island during your 48hrs in Anglesey; a short 20 minute drive with take you to the wide open beaches of Red Wharf Bay and Benllech while slightly further up the coast, will bring you to the pretty fishing village of Moelfre.

Sunday afternoon in Beaumaris

For those with a National Trust membership, Plas Newydd close to the Britannia Bridge has a wonderful wooden adventure playground while those looking for a photo opportunity must head to LlanfairPG train station to capture the longest place name in the UK. From here, it is a further 20 minute drive to the Red squirrel woodland at Newborough Forest, the vast open beach beyond and the breathtaking views towards to Llanddwyn Island. After a windswept beach walk, stop at the Codmother in Newborough village for Fish & Chips or the Green Olive at Menai Bridge for a Vegan treat.

Foel Farm, Anglesey Sea Zoo and Anglesey Transport Museum are all within a short drive of Newborough Forest and deserve a stop if travelling with children. If you 48hrs in Anglesey is a wet one, ensure you book tickets to Pili Palas in advance for their indoor butterfly and tropical creature encounter as well as softplay. If it is dry, their brand new wooden play area is a huge hit with kids and worth the entry fee alone.

Sadly, the time has come to say goodbye to Beaumaris. On your drive home from Anglesey, the Snowdonia National Park beckons and for the thrill-seekers the opportunity to participate in a spine tingling adventure at any one of the World leading Zip Worlds dotted throughout this UNESCO world heritage site. In my opinion, there is arguable enough to do in Anglesey and North Wales to make a full week, or two, of it. 48hrs in Anglesey will no doubt just scratch the service and leave you longing to return and discover more of this beautiful place.

The Pilot House, Beaumaris

For our 48hrs in Anglesey itinerary, we were kindly hosted by the Pilot House, located in the West End of Beaumaris. All opinions featured in this article are my own and entirely honest.

You can book your stay at the Pilot House directly with the owner, Korina, through Instagram or via Boltholes and Hideaways. This property is unfortunately not dog-friendly but does cater to those with young children. There are stairgates fitted on the top and bottom of all the stairs, highchair/booster seat, bed guards, travel cot and padded play mats provided free of charge.

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Jenny
November 15, 2021
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