Wales 2016: Borth and Ynyslas

img_6075_edited-2It’s been quite a few months since our holiday in Wales, way back in May. In fact, we’ve been on holiday again since then.

But back in the mists of time, when we had not long returned from Wales, I started a series of blogs as a thinly veiled excuse to post up some photos.

Since then both my blogging and my photo processing has somewhat fallen by the wayside. However, with darker nights approaching, maybe things will pick up on that front.

So, I thought I would pick up where I left off, not least because Borth was probably my favourite place for photography.

We have visited Borth before, when we were holidaying in the area last year, and we liked it then.

It is not a bustling seaside town. There are no donkey rides, kiss me quick hats or gaudy piers. Nor is it particularly posh. In fact, it looks a little down at heel. Its brightly coloured Victorian buildings, when seen up close, have seen better days. And from the beach, only the tallest of these buildings can be seen, given the place a kind of melancholy, windswept, desolate look.

But I quite like that.

One thing it does have is an excellent pub.

Our first visit on this trip was an evening visit in search of food. But first, we had a wander along the beach, where the tide was in and crashing pleasantly along the pebbled shore.

Eventually hunger pangs overcame the enjoyment of the beach and we headed into the High Street where we came upon the Victoria Inn. It looks nice enough from the outside and the inside is comfy enough. At the bar they have several interesting ales and the menu is good.

But the real high point of the pub does not become apparent until you wander out the back. The pub backs out onto the beach, where they have a superb deck. Here, haven eaten well, we sat and enjoyed the late evening sun – a perfect spot.

Another thing that Borth has is an excellent Cafe

img_5986_edited-1Our next visit was a couple of days later, this time in the morning. We made a bee line for the Oriel Tir a Môr Gallery and Coffee Shop. We had discovered this superb cafe when we visited last year and were much in need of refreshment after a long cross-country walk. We were pleased to find that it was just as nice when we weren’t half dead from exhaustion.

Refreshed from breakfast we then took a walk along the beach. This time the tide was well out, which was a good thing because it reveals Borth’s main claim to fame:  at low tide tree stumps are revealed along the beach. This is a submerged forest; trees which carbon dating suggests died around 1500 BC. These are said to be part of a legendary ancient sunken kingdom known as Cantre’r Gwaelod. Described as the Welsh Atlantis, this has featured in folklore, literature and song.

We thought we’d seen the submerged forest when we were here before, but that was just the tip of the iceberg. This time the tide was further out and there were tree stumps everywhere.

After several hours walking along the almost deserted beach simply taking pictures and enjoying the scenery, we decided to move down the coast a mile or so to Ynyslas.

The scenery at Ynyslas is very different and tends to be where people recommend visiting. The area is part of the Dyfi National Nature Reserve and is made up of sand dunes which provide a home for rare plants and animals.

A raised wooden walkway winds through the dunes and shows how much the sands shift as, in parts, it is completely submerged by the dunes.

It was a pleasant walk and beautifully sunny but, overall, we still prefer Borth. I would recommend both for a day out though.


If you missed the first 4 instalments of our Wales adventures – or even if you didn’t, they were so long ago you’ve probably forgotten about them by now so could read them again – they are:

Elan Valley



Aberaeron and New Quay


About Darrel Kirby

I am what I am.
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