Harlech Castle (and Barmouth Beach)

Thursday 4 September 2014 by

Harlech castle, Wales, Day trip, Children

Living on the border of North Wales means that day-tripping there is quite easy and heading to places on the coast is extra special as we don’t see the sea very often due to living in a landlocked county.

My parents treated the Smalls and I to an outing to Harlech Castle a couple of weeks ago and we had an amazing time – even if it was ridiculously windy!

Harlech Castle is perched on the top of a rock resulting in some spectacular views across the sea and countryside alike – it is well worth climbing the many (many!) stairs to walk along the walls at the top and up even more stairs to climb the Gatehouse Tower. Hold on to your hat though as there is nothing between you and the wind – as Tori said when we sat in one of the giant open windows overlooking the sea: ‘I can’t breathe, there’s too much air!’

Harlech castle, Wales, Day trip, Children

The kids loved exploring the castle and seeing the display in the Gatehouse of how it used to look when it was still being used. They would have spent all day playing hide and seek there too if we had let them – it was great for exploring and had lots of good hidey holes!

We spent a few hours there before walking back through the town and sampling some very tasty local ice cream before hopping in the car and driving along the coast a bit to Barmouth for some beach time. By the time we got there though, Arthur was fast asleep from all the stair-climbing and hide-and-seeking so we left him and my Dad in the car whilst the rest of us went for a walk to the sea.

We were a little out of town and it was late afternoon (and windy!) so the beach was quiet. We walked across the sand, stopping to write our names and build sandcastles (though we had to chase our bucket when it blew away!) then we went for a paddle together. It was surprisingly warm given the weather – good job too as Tori fell in twice!

Harlech castle, Wales, Day trip, Children, Beach

After paddling, wave jumping and rock chucking we headed back to the car to get Tori changed (not a single item of clothing she was wearing was dry – it was like she’d been for a swim not a paddle!) and headed back home.

Harlech Castle is open daily (Seasonal times can be found here) and costs £4.25 for an adult ticket, £3.20 for under 16s and under 5s are free. A family ticket (2 adults and up to 3 under 16s) costs £12.75 and there is reduced entry for English Heritage and Cadw members.

Harlech is just 9 miles from Porthmadog and 11 miles from Barmouth – both great places to visit too.

You can follow Carole on Twitter: @caroleheidi

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