So after getting approval for my holiday, I decided to get the ball rolling and have now booked transport and accommodation, and decided on Caernarfon as a base after all.
I’ll be arriving there in five weeks’ time on Tue 7 March around 1530, will have Tue evening and all of Wednesday for looking around NW Wales, and will be leaving again on Thursday morning at 0815 to catch a plane in the early afternoon.
I’m planning on visiting the Rownd a Rownd set but have otherwise not got any fixed ideas.
If anyone in NW Wales (e.g. @Pete2, @siaronjames, @aran? ) has time on Tuesday afternoon/evening or on Wednesday 8 March and would like to meet up and speak Welsh with me, let me know!
Or anyone in Crewe where I have an hour and a half to change trains on Thursday 9 March from 1100 till 1230.
Also if anyone has tips for Welsh-speaking places to eat in Caernarfon or places reachable from there by bus.
I still haven’t got further than Level 1 Challenge 20 so I wonder how much I’ll understand but it was an opportunity that seemed too good to miss even at this point. I’m sure it’ll be an adventure, at any rate.
I can certainly meet you for a chat lunchtime on Wednesday (I work 9-5 and one day off from the lunchtime gym session won’t hurt! ). Or I could probably find an hour Tuesday evening after 7 if you’re not in Caernarfon itself on Wednesday. We can sort that out closer to the date.
For Welsh-speaking places to eat, there is plenty of choice as most of the places here have Welsh speaking staff, although you won’t go far wrong with The Black Boy.
There are buses to Llanberis - mentioned on the other thread - which is a lovely place to visit. Again, lots of Welsh-speaking eateries, but I usually go to Y Pantri for Ian’s great coffee!
Probably at “Cartref” guesthouse, though I also booked a room at “Tegfan” since they have an earlier check-in time and I’m not actually arriving in the evening so “from 1600” seemed a bit late. (Though now that I’ve seen what time I’d actually get there after train + bus it’d be nearly four anyway.)
So I’ll be cancelling one of them at some point.
They’re both within the walls, in the same block of houses even.
I really like railways, so the one going up to the summit of Snowdon had been on my list of things to do if I had two weeks in the area! I wonder whether that would fit in to a single-day excursion, timewise.
Or maybe the one from Caernarfon to Porthmadog to Blaenau Ffestiniog.
Perhaps not. But a visit to Llanberis as a place still sounds like a good idea; thanks!
Obviously the Caernarfon-Porthmadog-Blaenau Ffestiniog one would take much longer and wouldn’t leave much of the day to do anything else - but certainly worth doing when you have the time.
Porthaethwy (where the RaR set is) is in the opposite direction to Llanberis, but it should be possible to visit both in a day, even on the buses. The Snowdon train is iconic of course, but won’t be running until mid-March. There is also the Llanberis Lake Railway though - so it’s possible you could still fit one heritage train journey in!
I’d recommend giving yourself some extra bulk exposure before then - race through the rest of L1 and as much as you can of L2 - aim to do a lesson each day, with no pause and no repetition (they’ll all be there for you to come back to later if you need) and 10 minutes of accelerated listening exercises every day, and you’ll get even more out of the visit… [particularly if you add an hour’s conversation practice each week between now and then].
We’re around that week - Wednesday’s are tricky for us, because Catrin goes to lend a hand to her mother and I don’t have the car, but you’d be welcome to call out at the house if you can figure out the bus from Caernarfon to Carmel - or we might be able to swing it to come in for an early evening panad on the Tuesday…
I have nothing to add except to say, WOOHOO! And: I absolutely loved Caernarfon, I second Siaron’s suggestion of The Black Boy (where I managed to stumble through several exchanges in Welsh and felt very proud of myself), and also second the suggestion of Llanberis!
After having thought about things to do, I think I’d rather go to the set on my own as I’d like to go to Llanfairpwll railway station as well and take the train back over the other bridge, and I’d prefer to be “on my own timetable” rather than imposing on someone else.
Having met @philipnewton on Skype, I am not surprised. He seemed the most fluent on there, with a lovely accent which made me think of Patagonia not Germany! Because I was so tongue tied, I listened a lot!