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The Ultimate 12 Days of Christmas Tour of Coastal Wales

December 14, 2016

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Whether you’re stuck with gift ideas, have no plans for the holidays or looking for somewhere to walk off all those mince pies, we have the ultimate list of Welsh coastal businesses for you.

These outstanding local, often family- or community-run businesses are supported by the Coastal Communities Fund, endowed by the Welsh Government and delivered by the Big Lottery Fund, promoting sustainable economic growth and jobs in coastal communities.

A Partridge in a Pear Tree

Coastline Sofa Cinema (Tape Community Music and Film)

TAPE Community Music and Film Ltd based in North Wales is an award-winning charity delivering high quality projects from one-hour taster sessions to their annual film festival. While their annual film festival takes place in October, they just recently launched their Coastline Sofa Cinema in Old Colwyn with free screenings for children, families and adults you can enjoy relaxing on lush red leather sofas. Tickets are free but a quick advanced booking is required….and you can bring your own snacks!

For more information on the booking and screenings visit their website.

2 Turtle Doves

Colwyn Bay Watersports

Colwyn Bay Watersports delivers taster sessions and full courses in sailing, windsurfing, power-boating, and paddle boarding, they also hire canoes and kayaks in season. There is also a beach activity club for young people ages 8-14 years old, so it might be worthwhile to ponder about those summer plans as you walk down on the breezy beach after your lunch of Christmas cookies and mulled wine.

Visit Colwyn Bay Watersports’ website to find out how to take part in activities.

3 French Hens

RSPB Cymru

Ready to have some quiet time from the hustle and bustle of Christmas? Spend some time bird watching and relaxing while visiting the South Stack visitor centre,  The Visitor Centre, with shop and cafe, is open from 10 am to 5 pm daily (except Christmas Day).

More information on the centre is available here.

4 Calling Birds

Becws Islyn Bakery, Aberdaron

If in the area of Aberadaron, look no further than the Becws Islyn Bakery on Pwllheli Road for all your bakery needs. The bakery has been completely rebuilt from an almost 100-year-old tin hut into a family-run, proper thatched bakery with a tea room and dog-friendly environment. Be sure to return in the summer to fully enjoy the beautiful beach right at the end of the road.

Visit their Facebook page to find out more.

5 Golden Rings

Anglesey Sea Salt Company Ltd and Halen Môn Salt-Cote & Visitor Centre

The Halen Môn Salt-Cote & Visitor Centre serves as a permanent home and sustainable centre for sea salt production and visits. Behind-the-scenes tours are available to all interested in history, culture and food. The hourly tours include a tutored salt-tasting. Advance booking is recommended. Whether you choose to take a tour or not, the gift shop is over 10:00 – 17:00 and you’ll find goodies to buy for your loved ones this Christmas (or even a treat for yourself!).

Can’t make it to the centre? Be sure to check out the Christmas treats and hampers in the online shop.

6 Geese a Laying

Cwrw Llyn Cyf – Independent Brewery

Cwrw Llyn started in 2011 and very quickly couldn’t supply enough beer to meet the increasing demand. More recently, for the first time ever permission was granted to the brewery to produce beer glasses with the official measure written on the glass in the Welsh Language. These ‘peint’ glasses would make an excellent Christmas gifts. You can pick one up at the brewery shop in Gwynedd. While there, be sure to take a tour too.

More information is available on their website.

7 Swans a Swimming

Vale of Rheidol Heritage Railway

The Vale of Rheidol Heritage Railway is an outstanding way to experience the Rheidol Valley between Aberystwyth and Devil’s Bridge riding a narrow-gauge steam train either in the Open Summer Carriages of the First Class Observation Saloons. Ride the full length of the railway or hop off and walk the breath-taking mountains and valleys of Mid-Wales.

Don’t miss the Santa Trains throughout December: 17, 18, 21, 22, and 23, then Santa must depart and travel around the world to spread joy! The train ride is just over an hour, and ticket price includes the journey, a gift for each child, mince pies and mulled wine for the parents, biscuits and squash for the children, a miniature train ride and entertainment.

Be sure to book your tickets in advance to meet Santa.

8 Maids a Milking

Cardigan Market Hall

The small market has recently undergone a rejuvenation project in order to become a sustainable business hub for market traders and micro-enterprises in Cardigan promoting local trade and crafts, produce, and a range of household goods. So if you are looking for truly one of a kind gifts be sure to call in as the market hosts a variety of stalls of independent traders. When you are ready to have a rest, visit the highly recommended café serving foods from around the world with daily specials available using locally sourced produce.

For more information on Cardigan Market Hall visit their website.

9 Ladies Dancing

BlueStone Brewing, Pembrokeshire

Have a very hoppy Christmas this year with Bluestone Brewing. They’re a family run brewery tucked away in the Preseli Hills in rural North Pembrokeshire.  They brew ales from ingredients in the foothills of the Bluestone Mountains to create a unique taste.

You can pick up a bottle of BlueStone Brewing beer at bottle shops and stockist across Wales, so keep an eye out as they make a great gift.

For more information and opening times, visit their website or Facebook page.

10 Lords a Leaping

360 Beach and Watersports Centre, Swansea Bay

You would think that a watersports centre is really only for watersports…think again! 360 is hosting the Swansea Male Choir Christmas Concert on Thursday, 15 December at 18:30. Advance booking is recommended. Tickets are £5 for adults, free for children, hot drink and mince pie is included.

Visit the 360 Beach and Watersports Centre website.

11 Pipers Piping

Penarth Pier Pavilion, Cardiff

Celebrating Christmas in the capital? Be sure to drop by Penarth Pier Pavilion. Chances are you might find an art exhibit, a film screening, some scrumptious treats or a light lunch in the café. The café bar is open until 7:30 for wines, beers, tea and coffee and drinks can be taken into the cinema. Even if you’re visiting outside of the Pavilion’s opening hours the beach and Pier make for an excellent stroll if you’re looking to walk off that second helping of Christmas pudding.

To see what’s on at the Pavilion visit their website.

12 Drummer Drumming

Wales Coast Path app by Keep Wales Tidy

Wherever you are in Wales, if you’re looking for somewhere to take a stroll with your friends and family over the holidays, be sure to download the Wales Coast Path app. The bilingual app offers information on over 150 beaches, including directions, car parks, historical attractions, accommodations, and local wildlife. The app also includes links to direct weather reports, tide timetables, information on the nearest food and drink provisions, shops and attractions. So download the app, wrap up warm and head on an adventure.

For more information on the Wales Coast Path app visit their website.

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