Friday, October 18, 2013

Holyhead, Wales

The start of our Ireland trip was a drive to the ferry. Our ferry went from Holyhead, Wales, to Dublin, Ireland, departing in the early morning hours. To make things easy, we stayed at a Holyhead youth hostel, Anglesey Outdoors, the night before our departure. The hostel caters to rugged outdoors folk but does have rooms too. We stayed in the rooms since we don't have a tent and do have precious little experience in camping.

After settling in, we went for a quick drive to the beach. Porth Dafarch Beach is a sheltered little cove where the tide was heading out.

Porth Dafarch Beach

L immediately went to her favorite activity, digging in the sand. She didn't discover anything other than more sand and occasionally water.

L looks for China

Nearby we found an X written in the sand. L was excited to dig up buried treasure. Then we noticed another X nearby. Either people were teasing us or the pirates were trying to hide the treasure by making multiple Xs.

X marks A spot, if not THE spot

J and I explored the water after rolling up our trousers. The water was cold and occasionally caught us off guard. J's trousers got rather wet but he was still happy.

Who put us in matching colors?

Using magic to keep the water from coming in too far!

Whoops, I don't have any magic powers!

The rocks in the area are quite evocative. The sound of the sea crashing on a beach always reminds me of the ending to the original Planet of the Apes movie and the opening of the movie version of the great haunted house story The Uninvited. The sound has a spooky melancholy for me.

Rocks and seaweed

A narrow channel out

Breakers coming in

We drove a little farther to the South Stack Cliffs Nature Reserve. From the parking lot we could see the path down to a small castle tower and the light house.

South Stack Cliffs

The lighthouse is the South Stack Island lighthouse and has been in place since 1809. In 1645 there was a request for permission to build a lighthouse but King Charles II refused. Things were slowly modernized over the years. In 1984 the lighthouse was completely automated, so no one lives there now.

South Stack Island lighthouse

The castle is Ellin's Tower, part of the nature preserve. It is intended for nature watching and is accessible except for when we visited (it was after 6 p.m.). We liked looking at the outside, even if we couldn't climb it to get the vaster views.

Ellin's Tower

As readers might imagine, a place like this has some spectacular cliffs. In fact, many signs warned us in English and Welsh. The kids were interested and the parents were nervous. Unlike America, these cliffs have no fences or guard rails or anything to prevent silly people from going over the edge. I guess British people aren't so silly as Americans.

Warning sign not necessarily necessary

A big drop

L and the windswept heather

We were soon off to the hostel where the free range chickens were out in force. When we pulled up, they came to our car, presumably looking for some food. J and L's reputations for dropping crumbs must have preceded them. We did not satisfy the chickens. Too bad we went out sight-seeing instead of out to eat.

Chickens hungry enough to eat each other!

Feeding time the next morning

Next up on the blog is our ferry trip!

No comments:

Post a Comment