Who are you?
Andria Massey, Footpath Secretary and Access Officer, Ynys Mon Ramblers Group, and freelance photographer.
Why are you a local authority on Anglesey?
I holidayed in Wales from childhood, so when I returned in 2004 there was a strong pull to settle here. I chose the beautiful Isle of Anglesey.
What do you love about it?
It has everything from Blue Flag beaches to high cliffs, 30 miles of the Wales Coast Path, lighthouses and historic sites. It is only 30 minutes from Snowdonia National Park. The people are friendly, it has a fairly low level of crime and the food is fabulous.
What’s your favourite place to visit?
South Stack, with its 1809 lighthouse on Ynys Lawd. It is accessed by following 400 steps down the steep mainland cliffs. These cliffs are a magnet for climbers and home to hundreds of seabirds, including puffins during the breeding season. An RSPB centre sited in Elin’s Tower offers great views of the nesting birds.
For history buffs, there is access to the Ty Mawr Hut group, the remains of 10 stone-built hut circles thought to date from the Neolithic period to Roman times.
The Coastal Path goes up Holyhead Mountain, past North Stack and into Breakwater Country Park, featuring scenic trails, birdwatching and a lake.
Which campsites would you recommend, and why?
Perhaps the best one is Tyddyn Isaf Camping and Caravan Park. It is located in Lligwy Bay, in Dulas, on the island’s east coast. It is close to the Coastal Path, with cycling routes, horse riding and access to great beaches and monuments.
What food and drink is the area known for?
Fresh fish, often seasoned with Halen Môn sea salt taken from the Menai Strait, is on the menu of many of the island’s restaurants.
The jams and marmalade from Beehive Preserves Jam Factory at Nanner Farm, Cemlyn, can be tasted on scones and bara brith (Welsh speckled bread). There are two vineyards, one in Red Wharf Bay and another in Llanbadrig, and the Anglesey Brewing Company produces craft beers and ciders.
Tell us somewhere great to eat or drink!
The best place is probably the Sea Shanty Café, in Trearddur Bay, open from 9am to 9pm for breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and dinner. It serves delicious seafood, and caters for special diets, such as vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free.
The Tavern in St David’s Bay, and The Ship Inn and The Boathouse in Red Wharf Bay, are also highly recommended, particularly for evening meals, and a number of restaurants and cafés in Beaumaris serve excellent food.
Where can you get spare kit?
Many of the sites have shops supplying accessories, but Bevan Caravan and Camping Supplies, a family business in Llangefni, offers everything from fuses and clothes to satellite dishes.
Where can you find the cheapest petrol/diesel in the area?
Tesco and Morrisons in Holyhead, and Asda in Llangefni, offer the cheapest prices.
Where should you avoid?
The Britannia Bridge is busy following ferry arrivals in Holyhead and during rush hours and is sometimes closed to high-sided vehicles in windy weather.
The Menai Bridge is narrow, so difficult to negotiate for wide outfits, although buses use it. Beaumaris’s narrow roads get busy in summer and during the Beaumaris Festivals, as does the Menai Bridge during the Anglesey Food Festival.
Share a secret highlight that only a local would know…
The coffin of Joan, wife of Llywelyn ab lorwerth and illegitimate daughter of King John, can be found in St Mary’s and St Nicholas’s Church in Beaumaris. RSPB Cors Ddyga near Pentre Berw lies within one of the largest lowland wetlands in Wales. In Penmon, the 12th-century church has superb Romanesque decoration, and houses two 10th-century crosses.
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Things To Do
When To Visit
The island has plenty to offer all year round, but is especially beautiful in summer, when you can enjoy those great beaches. Of course, this is also the busiest season, so beware that the Menai Bridge and roads around the island will be especially busy.