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Published: September 22nd 2017
The weather forecast was important in our decision making this morning. We want to go up Snowdonia, but the weather needed to be good. It was clear from both the forecast and the sky that today was not the day! Instead we decided to travel on the Ffestiniog railway. We decided to travel from Porthmadog to Blaenau Ffestiniogg. We went down to the station early to buy tickets. The carriages were already waiting at the station, we only had to wait for the engine to arrive and couple on. There was also another train to Canarvon, that was due to leave a little after our train. It actually arrived at the station first! There was a bit of consternation as to whether we were on the right train, but the helpful volunteers soon had everyone back in their seats. Our engine was running a little late, but soon it steamed into the station, coupled on, and off we went. As we left the rain started and became heavier through the trip. We travelled through mainly forested areas, although nearer the end of our journey there were some more open areas. The volunteers sold tea, coffee and cake as we travelled, which
was nice and warm! At the terminus we only had a few minutes before the return journey. If it had been a nicer day, we may have walked for a while and caught the following train back to Porthmadog, but today was not the day to do that. Back in Porthmadog we did a little shopping on our way back to collect the car. We decided to go to Portmerion, a small village close by. It was designed to show that architecture could fit into the environment. It is a collection of buildings, mostly in a kind of Mediterranean style. Certainly they are coloured like houses in some Italian areas. The area is now all holiday accomodation, with hotels and different self catering appartments and houses available to rent. We had lunch, then went on a short guided tour, and drive around the garden areas in a small train. The rain did not allow the place to look it's best! After Portmerion we drove to Harlech. Here we found another of Edward I castles that he built to keep the Welsh under control. Again the rain did not help, but we enjoyed looking at this castle. It is different to
Conwy, that we saw yesterday. It is smaller, but the Welch managed to hold the castle under siege for nine months, so they obviously had some skills in this area. The town around the castle is much smaller, and very pretty. Back to Porthmadog for a rest before dinner. tonight we ate at the Sprotsman Hotel, just around the corner from our accomodation. He meal was tasty, and very large! We needed to go for a long walk on our way back to Tudor Lodge!
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