Llandudno, Wales Travel Guide

Llandudno is quirky, there is no doubt about it.  It has all the makings of an interesting British beach holiday in the summer time and puts you close to the castles of Northern Wales year ’round.  I visited Llandudno on a whim.  I had no expectations nor did I really know what I was getting myself into.  That being said, I’m very glad I chose the quite beach town as it provided some much needed peace and quiet but also allowed me ample opportunity to explore the region.  Llandudno is certainly not on the European backpacker highway, although it is very backpacker friendly and a place I think you should visit.

Time Needed: 2-3 Days
Backpacker’s Budget: 50 Pounds a Day

Things to do in and around Llandudno

  • Great Orme: This is the big hill that carves the coastline to the left if you’re facing the beach in Llandudno.  There are a number of ways up; you can hike, take the tram or jump in the cable car.  The top offers some spectacular views of the surrounding landscape.
  • Orme Mine: There is a mine on Great Orme as well and they offer tours into the old copper mine.  It was shut on the day I tried to do it, so I can’t tell you how good it is, but it is available most of the year.
  • Conwy Castle: Getting to Conwy castle means taking the train to Llandudno Junction and then either walking to Conwy or catching the train to Conwy from there.  This is a must see if you’re around and makes for a really good day trip.
  • Llandudno Pier: The pier was mostly shut when I was there because of it being the low season, but was still a good walk.  There are lots of little shops, an arcade and I assume some carnival-like things that go on in the summer time.  You’ll also get some nice views from the end of the pier.

Where to Eat in Llandudno

On the food front, there are a number of options in town.  I ate most of my meals out of town but I did manage to get out for dinner twice.  I was also told that “Terrace Restaurant” was the best place to eat with a view, but I never got up there as I worried it was out of my budget.

  • Tribell’s Fish and Chips:  Great fish and chips and the menu isn’t limited to just the name that graces the title.  There are actually quite a few good staple British dishes served here.
  • Number One’s Bistro: A bit of a splurge for me, but the food made it well worth it.  The cuisine is mostly French but there are also some Italian dishes.  The service was really good as well.

Where to Stay in Llandudno

The whole reason I stayed in Llandudno was because of the availability of the hostel.  The Llandudno Hostel was maybe the best place I stayed in the UK which is ironic because it was the only place I hadn’t set up to review.  They did all the little things right: free wifi, lockers, tea and coffee in the room, good showers, perfect location and great service.  You can sleep in the dorm, although the private rooms aren’t that much more expensive.  This is a great place to stay.  If you’re a couple, there are also some deals at the hotels in town if you are around in the off season.

Getting out of Town

If you’re taking the train there are direct lines to Birmingham and Liverpool although you’ll likely have to change at Llandudno Junction which isn’t a big deal.  There is bus service here through National Express but it will likely take you twice as long to get you anywhere.  However, that’s a sacrifice you might be willing to make if you are on a really strict budget.

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3 Comments

  1. Good to see you’ve visited my neck of the woods, even better to see you gave it such a nice review :)

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    • Craig – really interesting place. Would like to have had time to explore a bit more!

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  2. I came across your site while seeking inspiration for a trip to Central Africa or Guinea Bissau next year (still in the early planning stages)- I find it amusing for some reason to find a review of Llandudno just after reading about you almost dying of malaria in the DRC. Couldn’t imagine a bigger contrast! Llandudno is a great little place- I went there expecting it to be a typical miserable British seaside town (like Rhyl further down the coast) and was so pleasantly surprised. Llandudno really is one of the most underrated places in the country.

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