Distance: 10.8 miles
Max Altitude: 30 m
Min Altitude: 1 m
Height Gain: 140 m
Height Loss: 121 m
What a difference a decent night’s sleep can make. A stark contrast to the previous night, I slept like a log.
As soon as I went downstairs at the Holland Hotel, I was greeted by owner Liz, who made me a huge portion of scrambled eggs on toast and two massive mugs of coffee. With my belly full, I said goodbye to her and husband Steve before I set off. Thank you so much to the two for giving me a place to stay for the night.
First job was to cross the Afon Alaw on this green footbridge.
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The sky was murky and threatened rain. It had rained during the night but when I began walking, it was dry, just. It wasn’t to last though and two kilometres in, it started pouring. My new trainers gave way almost immediately and I was soon squelching along on the Wales Coast Path.
When it started to rain harder I donned my waterproofs and covered my pack. By now, a very familiar drill. And then, it was a case of head down and just go.
I reached the housing estate of Newlands Park, drenched. I needed to dry off in order to continue. My feet were in a state inside my trainers, I could feel. So instead of continuing on the WCP, I made my way towards Valley where I took respite inside the pub, The Valley. I’ve never been so happy to see electric hand (trainers) driers in my life. Oh, and their coffee wasn’t half bad either.
I stayed for a couple of hours drying out and becoming human again. The weather cleared and I decided to make a break for it, walking towards Ynys Gybi (Holy Island) by the side of the A5. I walked along a structure built by Thomas Telford between 1823 and 1824.
Before entering Penrhos Nature Reserve I spotted the Coffee Cups tearoom on the side of the road so went in to see what was on offer. When I saw the words ‘cream’ and ‘tea’, I didn’t need much convincing. I wasn’t about to ignore the chance to eat scones and jam like I had a couple of days ago.
Satisfied, I rejoined the path and followed a route through the forest.
I looked across the bay to where I had walked from during the previous few days. In the distance, Porth Swtan and Porth Penrhyn.
On arrival in Holyhead I made a beeline for the port, as I knew it would be open. I had a coffee and a snack with my feet elevated, while watching people coming and going.
I got on my way and crossed the Celtic Gateway Bridge.
New contrasted with old as the WCP went past the historic heart of the town – a 1700 year old Roman fort. The fortress of Cybi is named after St Cybi, hence ‘Caergybi’, the Welsh name for Holyhead.
I had already decided at that point that my stopping point would be just short of Holyhead Mountain. I enjoyed strolling along Traeth Newry and nosing at all the random bits of maritime history.
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I finished walking finally when I got to the Holyhead Breakwater Country Park.