29 Aug 2014

Wales (part 2, Caernarfon, Ynys Môn, Conwy)

Caernarfon Castle

Anglesey Arms and town wall

view of hill from Caernarfon Castle

view of Caernarfon Castle from hill

Beaumaris Castle

Hen Capel Lligwy

Din Lligwy

Barclodiad Y Gawres

Conwy Castle

a nest with baby birds

Three bridges cross in front of Conwy Castle, right to left in order of construction. While they attempted to match the two oldest ones with the castle, the newest one really is a defacement of the castle grounds.

Denbigh Castle

some new photos of my Imperial:

Sent from my Imperial De Luxe 5


  1. There are several victorian era bridges connecting the Meni Strait - the rail bridge, to the right on Nick's picture, is the first "tubular" bridge in the world, built by Robert Stephenson, the famous railroad engineer.

    The suspension bridge, in the middle, was built by Thomas Telford in 1826.

    There are several other famous bridges across the straights as the shortest crossing to Dublin Ireland from Southern England is via Holyhead on Anglesey; since the straits are so narrow and since getting to Holyhead made the trip across the Irish sea so much shorter, some of the earliest feats of industrial age bridge-building can be found there. You still go to Ireland this way from London, thus the ugly, modern, bridge.

    The castles would have been whitewashed in lime made from clamshells when built, the better to visually dominate their surroundings.


    1. I forgot to mention how the castles would have looked when new. Aside from the whitewashing, they would also have often had conical roofs, Conwy specifically, had rather tall pointed roofs on its towers. Lacking the white finish and the pointed roofs gives castles a lot more of a natural feel to them today, blending in with the surroundings almost like rock cliffs.

  2. What an incredibly beautiful location. Thanks for sharing these photos, and the great travelling typecast!

  3. I spent every family holiday until I was a teenager on the North Wales coast, so this is a great trip down memory lane for me. Yep, Caernarfon (or Carnarvon as it was called back then - before the Welsh language was fully reinstated into the transport administration - and long before the new 'expressway' was bulit) is the best because you can practically walk all the way round on the battlements and through the walls. Every time I come home over the Thames, I look at the wooded stumpy motte which was the centre of the old Wallingford castle and bemoan Cromwell's enthusiasm for castle razing. On the other hand, without his fervour, we'd probably be having to do without stuff like democracy. I know we traded feudal serfdom for another kind but reluctantly, I have to give him his due.

    1. It's interesting how through my father, names like Caernarfon and Conwy (formerly spelled Conway I believe) were household words. It's sad in a way, how even though it took me many years to actually experience these places, he has yet to visit the UK.

      Contemplating how things would be without an influential figure like Cromwell is always so tricky. My first thoughts are like a reflex, jerking back when I think of his castle razing and extreme puritanism. It's so easy to think of a historical figure only as the sum of either their good things or their bad ones, depending on how they seem to weigh on the scale. But in the end, somebody else would have come along and shaken things up, perhaps not as destructively.