Around Llandundo Rhos on sea


This very sedate North Wales coastal resort has a breakwater to shelter the pleasure boats and, along the promenade, is the small Chapel of St Trillo. Though the chapel’s age is unknown, it is said to have been built above an ancient holy well and also on the spot from where, reputedly, 

Owain Gwynedd set sail in 1170, and eventually landed on the North American continent – some 322 years before Columbus made his historic voyage to the New World! It is said to be the smallest church in Britain, as it can only seat six people. Southwest of the town is Bryn Eurin, all that is left of a prehistoric fort. On the promenade is a monument to the Rev W Venable Williams. 

He helped in the development of Rhos, but was in many ways a controversial figure. He resisted the demands of local farmers to have their tithes reduced, and his mission church in Colwyn Bay was set on fire because of this. He also tried frantically to stop Colwyn Bay from splitting from his own parish of Llandrillo yn Rhos, taking his fight all the way to Parliament and even Queen Victoria. 

The Harlequin Puppet Theatre can be found on the town’s promenade. When built, in 1958, it was Britain’s first permanent theatre specially for puppet shows and continues to present shows to this day

A more genteel place than the resorts found to the east, Colwyn Bay was built largely during the 19th century to fill the gap along the coast between Rhos-on-Sea and the village of Old Colwyn. As a result, there are many fine Victorian buildings to be seen,

 and the beach is served by a promenade along which most of the town’s attractions can be found. Colwyn Bay includes among its famous sons ex-Monty Python Terry Jones and a former James Bond, Timothy Dalton. 

The philosopher Bertrand Russell (1872–1970) was cremated with no ceremony at Colwyn Bay crematorium and his ashes scattered in the sea. Although Colwyn Bay lies on the coast, it is also home to the Welsh Mountain Zoo, 

a conservation centre for rare and endangered species that is best known for the Chimp Encounter, 

its collection of British wildlife and its feeding of the sealions. The zoo’s gardens, laid out by TH Mawson at the end of the 19th century, incorporate both formal terraces and informal woodlands, with paths offering superb views of Snowdonia as well as the Conwy estuary and the North Wales coast. The Tarzan Trail Adventure Playground is a sure fire winner with young visitors.

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