Last month we disappeared to a remote corner of Snowdonia for a long weekend with two of our closest friends. And when I say remote, I mean remote! Ty Coch cottage is situated in the abandoned village of Rhiwddolion, at the head of the valley above the popular walker’s village of Betws-y-Coed. There is no phone signal or television, and it’s absolute bliss for those who need to escape technology for a while.
For those of you that haven’t heard of The Landmark Trust, they’re a charitable organisation that take on historic buildings in danger of being lost forever. They then transform them sympathetically to their former glory, and allow members of the public to holiday there. This helps to pay for the maintenance of the buildings, meaning that they can be enjoyed for generations to come. Their buildings vary in size and period- from the little stone mining cottage that we stayed in, to magnificent forts by the sea. If you’re at all interested in historical architecture and interior design and looking to plan a getaway, I highly recommend having a browse of their website. You won’t be disappointed! All buildings have a fully equipped kitchen, and all the essentials you’ll need for your stay.
The main reason we ventured to Wales was to tackle Mount Snowdon, something we’ve done in the summer months but never in the winter. We were hugely lucky with the weather, and woke up on the Saturday to the clearest skies I’ve even seen in North Wales. The climb was still a little treacherous, and there was some sheet ice on the scrambles. I’d recommend you only attempt this walk in the winter if you have some experience, decent thermals and waterproofs, and basic crampons. The weather can be very changeable, and the wind chill at the summit was -10! The last time we summited Snowdon the weather was pants, and the visibility poor. This time, we were blessed with fantastic views for miles around.
After you’ve exhausted yourself with a days walking, you’ll probably want to refuel at a local café, and I’d definitely recommend The Alpine Coffee Shop in Betws-y-Coed. We discovered this little gem on the morning that we were heading home, and it was the perfect place to eat before the long drive. They do a smashing cooked breakfast, catering for vegetarians and vegans, and with hundreds of teas and coffees to choose from to go with it. The interior of this eco-friendly café is gorgeous and full of shabby chic tables, local artwork and even recycled chandeliers made of rubbish.
For anymore information about the Landmark Trust or The Alpine Coffee Shop, visit: