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.
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.
I finished walking finally when I got to the Holyhead Breakwater Country Park.