Accommodation in North Wales

Looking for somewhere to stay in North Wales?

Tourists coming to North Wales are now spoiled for choice when it comes to accommodation.

Many British people still associate a holiday in Wales with a seaside stay in a dilapidated Victorian hotel that has seen much better days and some soggy Fish’n’Chips, but the region has come a long way since then. Along with the huge range of fantastic food festivals and stellar outdoor activities that are now on offer, you can choose from a dazzling array of accommodation options so there truly is something for everyone.

Check out our top picks of places to stay in North Wales (from Visit North Wales) to get some inspiration for your next trip here: 

For Campers: Gwern Gof Isaf

Opened in 1906, Gwern Gof Isap is one of the longest running campsites in Wales which has been run by the same family ever since.

Henry Williams’ great grandmother was the first member of the clan to open their farm to travellers, setting an example of hospitality that her descendants have continued to this day. Now run by the 8th generation of Williams, the campsite is one of a very few campsites in the country that is open 365 days a year.

Where? Nr Conwy, LL24 03U How much? £6pppn

For Glampers: Wild Wellingtons

For those not wanting to sleep too rough and who prefer a solid roof over their head, as opposed to a flimsy piece of material, glamping is the new alternative that is fast becoming massively popular for younger families who might find sleeping in a tent too much of a hassle.

There are only two ‘geo-domes’ at Wild Wellingtons which means that there’s never a queue to use the ample facilities there which include a newly built indoor cooking/fire area, children’s play area with trampoline and even a little football field.

Where? Ceredigion, SA44 6PS How much? From £250pn for an entire ‘Geo-dome’ (see site for details)

For Home Comforts: Y Bwthyn Llwyd

Of course, when ‘geo-domes’ won’t quite suffice and you just want some peace and quiet, self-catered accommodations provide a home from home experience that might make you want to never leave!

Whilst there are tonnes of holiday homes to choose from all with their own quirks, we’ve chosen Y Bwythyn Llwyd in Menai Bridge for its fantastic location, sleek presentation and brill facilities. There’s a Waitrose nearby as well as village shops and you’re just a short drive away from the Michelin-starred Sosban and the Old Butchers.

Where? Menai Bridge How much? From £75pn

For 4-Star Service: Castle Hotel

If you’re looking for a real pampering experience then perhaps its best for you to stay in one of Wales’ premier hotels. Named for the imposing 13th Century castle that lords over the coastal town of Conwy, this four-star town house hotel has been awarded a AA Rosette for culinary excellence in addition to many others.

Whether you choose to say in a cosy Club Double room or a Superior Historic Four-Poster Double you’ll find that the service you receive will be uniformly brilliant, just make sure that you remember to explore the rest of the town!

Where? Conwy How much? From £130pn for a double room (including breakfast)

Shepherd’s Pie: Saviour of Wales?

Welsh cuisine’s profile is relatively small when compared to that of its international rivals.

Some will say that there’s a reason for this, they’ll argue that Welsh food is by and large very derivative of English cuisine and that it is plain or otherwise interesting…

…it should go without saying that we disagree with this rather strongly.

Welsh food might well have its similarities with English cuisine due to our geographical proximity but the flavours, compositions and ingredients that make up our dishes contribute to a scene that is far more than the sum of its parts. The food that is made by Welsh men and women is a result of our fantastic local produce, centuries of inherited traditions and the innovation of thousands of Welsh home cooks.

Welsh Shepherd’s Pie is a wonderful example of how Welsh cooks have used locally sourced ingredients to adapt a pre-existing recipe and create something that is new, refreshing and (most importantly) Welsh.

Every single ingredient in this recipe can be grown and bought in Wales, making it a meal that is not only affordable but also a key contributor to the Welsh economy. Despite the quality and abundance of Welsh Lamb, farmers are still struggling to sell it to supermarkets. In a post-Brexit world with the threat of greater import prices on the horizons, some Welsh ministers are suggesting that Welsh Lamb could set up to become the biggest boon of the economy. Once processed into mince Welsh Lamb could become the key ingredient in thousands of ready meals, as well as being used by catering companies in mass-produced meals that would be delivered across the UK.

Before we see that bright future though, you might want to get a little taste of what’s to come. Try out the following recipe to get a true taste of Welsh cuisine and for best results always use Welsh produce.

Welsh Lamb Shepherds Pie

Serves four hungry mouths.

450g Welsh Lamb mince
900g Maris Piper potatoes, peeled and chopped into cubes
2 good-sized parsnips, peeled and diced
¼ cabbage, shredded
1 onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 carrot, peeled and diced
1-2 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons tomato purée
300ml Lamb stock
1 tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
Salt and Pepper to season
splash of milk for mashing potatoes
2 teaspoon butter for mashing


Preheat your oven to Gas Mark 4 or 180ºC for fan.

Place your prepared potatoes and parsnips in a large pan, cover with just enough boiling water to cover and fast simmer with the lid on for about 10-15 minutes until soft (add the cabbage during last 5 minutes of cooking).

Meanwhile, place the Welsh Lamb mince, onion and garlic in a cold pan. Place on the heat and ‘dry fry’ in its own juices and brown for about 4-5 minutes.

Add the carrot, flour and purée and combine well together.

Add the stock and herbs. Season and bring to the boil and then simmer for 10 minutes with the lid on the pan.

Drain the potatoes, parsnips and cabbage. Add the milk and margarine or butter and mash.

Place the mince mixture into a family sized gratin dish and top with a layer of mash.

Place in a preheated oven until crisp and golden, about 20-25 minutes.

Serve with fresh spinach or other greens.

Sourcing Stove Parts, Staff & Food: Llyn Peninsula Success Stories

There are three distinct challenges of operating a restaurant in a remote place.

The Llyn Peninsula juts out of North Wales, an instantly recognisable feature of the Welsh coast line that presents serious challenges for any restaurateurs seeking success there.

Staff

The restaurant business is associated with a high turnover of staff which isn’t an issue when your restaurant is based in an urban area. Dense city and town populations are rife with unemployed people who are keen to find work, but things are a little different out in the sticks. In order to produce food that’s a cut above the rest, Llyn Peninsula restaurants must attract professional chefs and also pay them enough to keep them and their families happy in their new rural homes. The same principle applies to waiting staff. As any restaurant owner will know, a consistency of service is key to providing a quality experience which is only possible if you retain staff for extended periods of time.

Sourcing ingredients

It would be easy to assume that restaurants should have no issue sourcing ingredients considering the abundance of fantastic producers in Wales, but due to the sheer volume of eateries in the area, head chefs and owners alike have to compete to secure consistent deliveries of the best produce at the very best price. The most successful restaurants on the Llyn Peninsula have long-lasting relationships with farmers to ensure a consistent supply of seasonal ingredients the whole year around. Unsurprisingly, the fishermen and farmers in Llyn Peninsula are amongst the best paid in the UK.

Breakdowns & Repairs

It can be easy to forget about the practical side of running a restaurant business. For example, if any equipment breaks down the owner is suddenly faced with a logistical nightmare. An oven break down is probably the most dreaded of all issues as it immediately puts a kitchen in hot water. When your restaurant is so far away from any maintenance specialists or spares suppliers there’s simply no quick way of sourcing and fitting the part you need. There’s no easy solution to this problem as keeping a full complement of stove parts on standby (as well as someone to fit them) isn’t practical. The only thing a professional restaurant can do is ensure that their ovens are up to industry standards and that there’s always a backup in place.

These Llyn Peninsula restaurants have found a way to surpass these challenges and produce excellent food:

Tremfan Hall Restaurant


Consistently voted as one of the best places to eat on the Peninsula, this atmospheric restaurant should be on the top of your agenda. 

How much? Starters from £5.95
Mains from £16.95
Can you stay the night? Yes
Telephone: 01758 740169
Address: Tremfan Hall
Llanbedrog Pwllheli
Gwynedd
LL53 7NN
Website: http://tremfanhall.webs.com/

Poachers Restaurant


The family-run Poachers Restaurant is a favourite among locals and offers some great value.

How much? Two Courses for £19.95
(Dessert course for supplemental £4.00)
Can you stay the night? No
Telephone: 01766 522512
Address: 66 – 68 High Street
Criccieth
Gwynedd
LL52 0HB
Website: http://www.poachersrestaurant.co.uk/

Castle Inn Criccieth


This cosy pub offers a menu unadulterated pub classics – perfect for winter or summer.

How much? Sharers from £2.50
Mains from £9.50
Can you stay the night? No
Telephone:

01766 523515

Address: The Castle Inn Criccieth
Criccieth
LL52 0RW
Website: https://www.thecastleinncriccieth.com/

North Wales Food Festivals

Despite the Llyn Land and Seafood Festival currently being on hiatus, there are still plenty of wonderful food festivals and markets for you to come and visit.

Over the last few years the demand for quality food events has grown and grown with thousands of people flocking to Wales every year to taste what the region has to offer.

A good food festival offers something for everyone and thanks to the huge variety of produce that Wales creates, you’ll find that a Welsh food festival has just as much on offer than any other hip, urban event.

If you’re thinking of visiting us here in Wales then why not incorporate one of these popular food festivals into your holiday itinerary so that you can get a real idea of what Welsh food is all about and even take some home with you!

There are so many great food events across the country that we’ve decided to make a couple of lists, this first one will cover our favourite food festivals in North Wales:

Conwy Honey Fair

The seaside town of Conwy is the kind of place that you can spend days exploring should you wish. The imposing 13th-century fortress serves as a dramatic backdrop, with the Smallest House in Britain providing a neat juxtaposition. What many visitors aren’t aware of is the thriving bee-keeping community that calls its home there.

Each year these bee-keepers collect their produce and sell them at the Conwy Honey Fair, which takes place every 13th September on the High Street and Lancaster Square. This is a perfect chance to meet beekeepers and discover all the wonderful products that they can make with the help of their bees.

Where? High Street & Lancaster Square, Conwy When? 13th September 2018

Mold Food and Drink Festival

Returning for its 13th year, this event packs an entire festival’s worth of food stalls, exhibitions, cookery theatres and produce into New Street Car Park bringing the sleepy North Wales town to bustling life and pumping much needed money into the community.

Live music from the local area keeps the crowds entertained and a massive open-air courtyard is decked out with tables and chairs for folks to sit down, enjoy the summer sun and enjoy the festival.

Where? New Street Car Park, Mold When? 15th-16th September 2018

Wrexham Food Festival

After a couple of shaky years the Wrexham Food Festival is back and set to be better than ever.

In addition to events taking place on the Saturday and Sunday, organisers have joined forces with restaurants for the week before, offering diners the opportunity to try new menus and special offers in the run up to the weekend. This year there’s going to be an emphasis on entertainment with plenty of live music to keep you moving all the way through the evening.

Where? Wrexham When? 22nd-23rd September 2018

Llangollen Food Festival

One of the most successful festivals in North Wales, the Llangollen Food Festival was founded in 1997 making it one of the longest running festivals of its kind in the country.

The event has consistently attracted thousands of people to the town for two decades and is estimated to have boosted the local economy by approximately £8 million since its inception. 2017 was the festival’s biggest yet with over 130 stallholders offering a massive range of produce for visitors to try and take away with them.

Where? Llangollen Pavilion, Llangollen When? 13th-14th October 2018