in the days leading up to our trip to north wales, the weather seemed to be taunting us. it was raining and snowing here in london, and claimed to be no better over there, so rather than freeze like we did on the isle of wight, we packed layers. and winter coats. and scarves and socks and all the warmness, because we had very much learned our lesson. included in my packing this time around, were a handful of deliciously warm cotton jumpers, including this bleeting cute number from sugarhill boutique.
the first sight on our very-full itinerary was penrhyn castle, in bangor. it was about a twenty minute drive from our bed and breakfast in holyhead, and super easy to find. the clouds were grey and it was super windy, but there didn't seem to be much threat of rain... until we pulled into the gravel driveway and the heavens seemed to open up out of nowhere and rather than a spot of rain, icy sleet and hail pelted us for about three minutes - before totally stopping. then starting for another three minutes, before totally stopping. it kept going on like that for about fifteen minutes, and it was sort of hard to find shelter while walking in the grounds of the castle, but it was just so randomly on-and-off that we just sort of... well, got on with it!
we wandered around the grounds for about half an hour, ducking inside the walls sneakily even though we'd only bought garden tickets, before actually finding the garden. tip: when someone gives you a map, use it. funnily enough, the moment we stepped inside the walled garden, the sun totally came out from where it was hiding, and pretty much stayed out for the rest of the day; a real hallelujah moment! the garden was really pretty too, which such an array of varieties and colours of flowers and plants, it was a lovely contrast against the dreary grey stone of the castle walls.
although the sun was out and finally warming us up, it was still super windy. it was still quite early in the day though, and those clouds were almost flying out of the sky. about an hour after arriving we were off, having had our fill of the first of many welsh castles we'd encounter that weekend, and a hot date with caernarfon for morning tea. and i thought the english loved a castle! you literally can't drive through a town without finding another, more impressive one.
it certainly set the benchmark though, and we even ended up randomly coming back to penrhyn the following day by accident, after getting too involved in a stupid game of "look! another castle!"
nope. the same castle as yesterday, fools.