Saturday, 30 September 2017

My September Days

I'm feeling so happy right now! With Autumn round the corner I am constantly daydreaming about cosy knits, pumpkin candles and hot chocolates and I love it. This month has been pretty busy and I don't see any sign of things slowing down any time soon!  Here are a few of the things that didn't make it to the blog.

Our First Wedding Anniversary

The highlight of our month was definitely celebrating our first wedding anniversary. As well as enjoying our luxury stay at the South Causey Inn we spent the first part of our day retracing our steps and saying "this time last year" to each other. We enjoyed pancake stacks at our wedding venue, the Parlour at Blagdon and then had a little stroll round Northumberlandia, where we had our wedding photos taken. I loved wading through the thick grass where our photographer Katie Byram took our favourite photos.

September Days- Northumberlandia


Cream Tea for Two 

I am so happy! This month I finally got to try out Violets on the Newcastle Quayside. I've been wanting to try the cute cafe ever since it opened but it's damn hard to get a seat, it's so popular. I was thrilled when a spontaneous stroll past paid off and I managed to bag myself a prime table by the window. Cream tea was ordered, the scones were perfect and I can definitely say that it was worth the wait. I can't wait to go again! I need to try the brunch and afternoon tea.

September Days - Violets Cafe Newcastle Quayside




Northern Wedding Jam

I know what you're thinking! Yes, I did celebrate my first wedding anniversary last week but it doesn't stop me from being very passionate about the North East wedding industry.  So when my lovely friend Kayleigh recently got engaged I pounced on her and organised a visit to Belle Bridal Magazine's Northern Wedding Jam at The Baltic. Showcasing some of the best wedding creatives in the region we had a fantastic afternoon pottering around watching bridal fashion shows and admiring amazing cakes.

September Days - Belle Bridal Northern Wedding Jam


Staycation Lusting at Middleton Lodge

After attending a team building event at Middleton Lodge this month I am desperate to book myself in for a luxury staycation. A beautiful country house snuggled away in the North Yorkshire countryside, this has to be the ultimate romantic break! The bedrooms look so cosy, the food in the Coach House is supposed to be superb and they even have a little treatment room. Let the heavy hinting to the husband commence!

September Days - Middleton Lodge


Pumpkin Spice Lattes

It really isn't Autumn until you've had your first Pumpkin Spice Latte of the year and I was keen to grab one as soon as they reappeared in Starbucks. I love them so much but have to limit myself to one a week or I'd be in there every day drowning in cream and overloading on sugar.

September Days - Pumpkin Spice Latte


Changing Seasons

I love Autumn! The beautiful colours and crunchy leaves never fail to put a smile on my face. I really noticed a change in the seasons during a lunchtime walk along the Newcastle Quayside last week. The sun appeared after a morning of rain showers and the reflection of the blue sky in the puddles alongside the red and orange trees was stunning. Safe to say I took a lot of photos on my phone that day!

September Days - Newcastle Quayside


Wardrobe Updates 

This year I was in desperate need of new boots for Winter as well as a snuggly coat so a lot of pennies have been spent. Whilst I like to invest a bit more money in the practical parts of my wardrobe I've also been purchasing a few bargains from Primark and my latest obsession is my new camouflage jacket (my smart arse husband likes to pretend he can't see me every time I wear it!)



For more adventures from New Girl in Toon make sure you follow me on Instagram, I post a new photo every day.

Friday, 29 September 2017

Our Luxury Wedding Anniversary Stay at the South Causey Inn, County Durham

I've only been married for a year and already I'm telling my husband big fat porkies! I promised him I wasn't going to be a crazy blogger during our special wedding anniversary stay at the South Causey Inn, but I just couldn't resist sharing our experience with you.

Therefore, please forgive the fact that these photographs aren't anything amazing. All pictures were taken on my iPhone as I frantically snapped away every time Simon's back was turned!  Before you all feel sorry for poor old Simon, joking aside, he was more than happy for me to share our trip on the blog - I was just under very strict instructions not to photograph the room from every angle and not to let his food go cold.

So here we go, unedited and as real as it gets! Our wedding anniversary stay at the South Causey Inn in County Durham!

Our Luxury Wedding Anniversary Stay at the South Causey Inn, County Durham


During our luxury minimoon in the Lake District we came to the decision that we wanted to make an effort to properly celebrate each wedding anniversary with an indulgent night away somewhere fancy. So when it came to planning our first anniversary I worked my way through our entire North East hotel lust list trying to decide where to spend the night before deciding on the South Causey Inn.

The South Causey Inn is the perfect destination for a romantic break with their collection of unique feature rooms with private hot tubs.  Although I'd had my heart set on staying on the bus (check it out here - it looks amazing!) it was unfortunately already booked so we decided to book into The Old Stable instead, a cute cottage style room with old equine memorabilia, huge leather sofas and, of course, the all important private hot tub!

Wedding Anniversary Stay at the South Causey Inn, County Durham


When we arrived at the South Causey we were a little worried about finding a parking space as the car park looked pretty rammed. With two weddings happening and hoards of people enjoying Sunday lunches, they were having a very busy Sunday afternoon! We needn't have panicked though as all of the special feature rooms come with their own designated car parking space. We were over the moon when we spotted a little roped off parking space with a "McGuirk" board right outside The Old Stable. We felt very special (and a little smug) as we pulled into our space.

Check in was super fast, efficient and friendly. The lovely receptionist personally showed us to The Old Stable and gave us full instructions on how to use the hot tub and, despite being happy with our welcome, he appeared again a short while later to apologise for how busy he'd been before and to check that we were OK. We were also surprised to be given vouchers for a complimentary Causey Cocktail and a £9.95 dinner voucher each as part of the South Causey's Sunday Night Special Offer. We had no idea about the offer when we booked so it was so kind that the South Causey went out of their way to bring us vouchers, something they really didn't need to do.

The outstanding service made us realise that we really had picked the perfect spot for our special stay.

Wedding Anniversary Stay at the South Causey Inn, County Durham - Old Stables


As we were celebrating we'd brought a bottle of champagne from home with us (one of the many bottles we've stashed from the wedding) and were really happy to find an ice bucket ready and waiting for us along with some champagne flutes. I'm not sure if this is standard for the room or if they were just being extra kind to us as it was our anniversary but it was a touch that made us feel very special.

A few moments later and we were surprised by a knock on the door and a selection of canapés. Despite there being no mention of this when we booked our room, the South Causey love to surprise their guests staying in the special feature rooms with a few complimentary treats.

Wedding Anniversary Stay at the South Causey Inn, County Durham - Canapes


After tucking in to our light bites we decided to explore our huge suite. The feature rooms at the South Causey have so many amazing props I think you'd discover something new each time you visit. There was just so much to see!  Simon was particularly taken with the amount of TVs in our room - as well as the TV in our lounge area we also had one in the bathroom and above the bed (I think it's only a matter of time before he tries to set one up in our bedroom at home!)

My favourite part of The Old Stable was definitely the bathroom which had a double basin, a huge shower and a double jacuzzi bath (that I'm completely gutted we didn't have time to use!). With plenty of mammoth towels, a snuggly dressing gown each and complimentary slippers it would have been possible to spend hours just in the bathroom!

Wedding Anniversary Stay at the South Causey Inn, County Durham - Bathroom


The reason we didn't have the time to enjoy that gorgeous bath?  We spent our entire afternoon enjoying our very own private hot tub. We literally lost hours in there!  We were blessed with perfect hot tub conditions, the slight chill in the air made the water feel extra warm and cosy and we toasted our first year of marriage with glasses of Bucks Fizz and endless chats about our future plans.

Just as we began to worry that we'd drained our bottle of champagne we had another surprise guest, this time carrying two glasses of fizz and a little box of chocolates! We were being completely spoilt and both agreed that actually wedding anniversaries are even nicer than your wedding day!

Wedding Anniversary Stay at the South Causey Inn, County Durham - Hot Tub


I could have spent all evening in that hot tub swimming about (I say swimming, as a non-swimmer I was splashing about in Simon's arms declaring "look, I can swim", much to his amusement!) but we had to climb out and get showered ready for our evening meal.

Of course, celebrating a special anniversary gives you the perfect excuse to take that extra bit of time making yourself look extra fancy so we took our time getting ready before making our way to the main building for some food.

Wedding Anniversary Stay at the South Causey Inn, County Durham - New Girl in Toon


The South Causey Inn have a smaller menu on a Sunday Evening, something I definitely wasn't complaining about as their usual offering is more like a book than a menu and I'm not the best at making decisions!  There were still plenty of dishes to choose from with all of the favourites making an appearance.

As a huge pulled pork fan Simon was a little disappointed that the Pulled Pork Burger that is usually in the menu wasn't there but the waiter checked with the kitchen and Simon's night was made when he was told that they'd be able to do the burger for him. He was over the moon when his dish turned up and the burger was packed full of pulled pork and was one of the largest burgers either of us had ever seen.

Wedding Anniversary Stay at the South Causey Inn, County Durham - Pulled Pork Burger


I decided to order the Vegetable Lasagne with very thickly cut chunky chips. I always forget how huge the portions are at the South Causey Inn, they certainly aren't shy with their servings and having dinner there is the ultimate treat for foodies like us.

Wedding Anniversary Stay at the South Causey Inn, County Durham - Vegetable Lasagne


By the time I'd cleared my plate I was completely stuffed, so full I could barely move but I couldn't help but order a dessert and so asked for a piece of Chocolate Fudge Cake with cream. Probably not the most sensible decision I've ever made as it was mammoth but it was just so damn good I really can't regret it.

Wedding Anniversary Stay at the South Causey Inn, County Durham - Chocolate Fudge Cake


Our lazy afternoon in the hot tub combined with an epic amount of food had finished us off and we practically crawled back to The Old Stable and were snuggled up in our huge bed watching the X Factor by 8:30 pm!

We had a lovely night's sleep in our huge comfy bed (I always appreciate a bed that's so big I lose Simon in it!) and it was a real struggle to get up in the morning, we had a very slow start but just about managed to get ourselves down to breakfast before check out.

Wedding Anniversary Stay at the South Causey Inn, County Durham - Double Room


Breakfast at the South Causey is included in the room rate and, just like their evening meals, offers mammoth portions to set you up for the day.  We helped ourselves to endless cups of coffee and orange juice and tucked into toast with butter and jam along with pastries from the continental table whilst we waited for our cooked breakfasts to arrive.

As much as I wanted to indulge in a Full English I was still feeling slightly full from the night before so decided on Scrambled Egg on a Bagel instead. I love that I thought that would be a more manageable dish, I'd forgotten about the Causey portion sizes and before I knew it a huge pile of scrambled eggs was in front of me - yum!

Wedding Anniversary Stay at the South Causey Inn, County Durham - Breakfast


Simon chose his usual breakfast favourite, Eggs Royale, where he had so much Hollandaise Sauce he probably could have swam in it. If you can't indulge for your wedding anniversary then when can you? All thoughts of sensible eating and diets went out of the window and we enthusiastically tucked in, almost managing to completely clear our plates.

Wedding Anniversary Stay at the South Causey Inn, County Durham - Brunch


Our time at the South Causey Inn was over in a flash and I couldn't believe that we hadn't had any time at all to walk the grounds or visit the animals. I guess time flies when you're enjoying yourself!

We loved every moment of our stay at the South Causey Inn and honestly can't thank them enough for giving us such a memorable anniversary. They have set the bar so high I don't know how we'll ever top it next year!

Wedding Anniversary the South Causey Inn, County Durham


If you are celebrating a special occasion or fancy surprising your other half with a romantic overnight stay I highly recommend a stay at the South Causey.  A Special Feature Room with a private hot tub are available from £271.00 a night and are worth every penny!

They also have some rather lovely looking packages including The Full Monty Overnight Stay Package that promises a romantic night for two including a massage each, four course meal, bottle of wine, cocktail and canapés - (a hint to my husband!)

For more hotel reviews and romantic date ideas in the North East follow New Girl in Toon on Facebook and Instagram.

Wednesday, 27 September 2017

Christmas at Marco Pierre White, Newcastle - the Festive Menu

Christmas! Yes, I said the dreaded word, in September!  But before you all start running away allow me to terrify you with the news that Christmas is less than 13 weeks away! That means if you want to get yourself in to the best restaurants in Newcastle this Christmas it really is best to get your diary organised now.

Celebrate Christmas at Marco Pierre White in Newcastle with their festive lunch and dinners, Christmas Day celebrations, New Year's Eve soiree or a rather delicious looking festive afternoon tea. There really is something to suit every foodie with plenty of traditional Christmas food to tempt you.

Christmas at Marco Pierre White, Newcastle - the Festive Menu


Resisting the urge to dive into the depths of my wardrobe and pull out my Christmas jumper (believe me, I did consider it) I popped along to Marco Pierre White on Fenkle Street with some of my favourite ladies to see what we can expect from their Festive Menu this year.

The Festive Menu at Marco Pierre White is available between 1 December and 21 December as lunch between 12:00 pm - 2:30 pm (3 courses £27.50 per person, under 12s half price) or dinner 5:30 pm - 9:30 pm (£33.00 per person, under 12s half price).

There are plenty of options per courses with all of the delicious treats you'd expect to find on a Christmas menu including Turkey (ooooh), Christmas pudding (hurrah) and mini mince pies (yes please!)

Our evening began with a tempting selection of seasonal starters. I opted for Mushroom Tartlet with Poached Hens' Egg and Sauce Hollandaise. When it appeared we had a little chuckle as it looked a little like I'd ordered breakfast for my Christmas dinner! Despite the brunch like look of the dish I promise you underneath my pile of eggs and sauce lay a delicious mushroom tartlet. I wiped my plane clean, mopping up with a few pieces of bread and butter - a little greedy maybe but it tasted so good I wanted to enjoy every last bit.

Christmas at Marco Pierre White, Newcastle -  Festive Menu


When it came to picking out a main course there really was no competition. If I'm enjoying a festive meal I always go with the turkey option, I am definitely not one of these people that get fed up with turkey during December and I'd happily eat it for every meal! If you're not one of these people then don't worry there are plenty of other options on the menu but for me I had to pick the Turkey Roast!

The Traditional Turkey Roast at MPW comes with all of the trimmings, Bread Sauce, Cranberry and Roasting Juices. When our plates arrived my eyes were out on stalks. Have you ever seen such an epic mountain of Festive food? It was the largest Christmas dinner I had ever seen!

Tucking in with great enthusiasm I was impressed by the tender meat, the crispy roast potatoes (why can I never get them like that at home?!) and the Bread Sauce that was so moreish I was enjoying every forkful with a generous dollop and completely forgot about the jug of extra gravy that was right in front of me!

Christmas at Marco Pierre White, Newcastle - Roast Turkey

I was defeated!  I just couldn't manage the whole plate, there was that much food.  Definitely wear your Santa pants when you tackle this Christmas monster!

Dessert came round and despite growing a belly that was beginning to resemble Santa's I managed to plod on - I mean if you can't indulge in three courses at Christmas then when can you?

I decided on the Black Cherry and Sherry Trifle Wally Lad, because sherry was always Santa's drink of choice at my house so it never fails to bring back childhood memories. I was always curious to try the sherry but was never allowed as apparently Santa isn't too happy if little girls drink his sherry!

The Trifle was so good that I decided to only eat tiny amounts off my spoon just to make it last that little bit longer. My tummy definitely didn't have the capacity to fit the entire trifle in but somehow I managed it. The wonderful boozy finish at the bottom of the glass kept me delving deeper and carrying on!

Christmas at Marco Pierre White, Newcastle - Festive Dessert

If you're looking for a festive menu this Christmas that leaves you feeling very happy, incredibly plump and ready for your Christmas afternoon nap then Marco Pierre White ticks all of the boxes and some!

Bookings for Christmas are being taken now - contact the team on 0191 300 9222 or visit their website to book your table before they all go!

I was treated to a complimentary Christmas meal in exchange for an honest review.

Sunday, 24 September 2017

Our First Wedding Anniversary - Life as a Wife

Today is my first wedding anniversary!

Can you believe it!  A whole year of being a Mrs! I honestly don't know where the time has gone, it has completely flown by and it blows my mind to think that this time last year I was getting ready to walk down the aisle and start my new life as a wife.

Our First Wedding Anniversary - Life as a Wife


Although life isn't really too different to before, I thought I'd celebrate the occasion by sharing with you the small ways that my life has changed since becoming a Mrs.

I did ask Simon for his input for this post but when I asked him how he thinks life has changed since getting married he had a little think then replied that his waistline had got bigger (not sure what that says about being married to me!)

Here's a little insight into my first year of life as a Wife!

A New Name

Having a new name is weird!  Will I ever get used to it?  The last year my eyes have been opened to what it's like to have a name that no one can pronounce or spell and whilst at times it's frustrating perfecting a new signature (still not got it down!) I love having the same name with Simon.

A Northern Family

Gaining extra family has been one of the best things about getting married. Simon's family are everything I'd imagined a northern family to be - so warm and caring, really fun and very supportive. They welcomed me as one of their own from the moment we met and I honestly love them all so much. It makes me so happy that I now get to share them with Simon - they are some of my very favourite people. I feel very lucky to have my own northern family!

First Wedding Anniversary - Life as a Wife


Banking Fun

It's taken us a year but we've finally got round to setting up a joint bank account and are managing our finances in a much more sensible way than before. Gone are the days of juggling money between each other and we're now working together as a team with our finances.  It's lovely to finally have everything sitting in joint pots rather than leading separate lives. I can't believe how much money we were wasting before we started banking together!

Date Night

I don't think anyone could claim that marriage is easy, but we are both determined to make sure that we always spend lots of quality time together just having fun. Since getting wed we've made more effort to enjoy date nights and have loved booking spontaneous tables at our favourite restaurants, something we hardly ever did before getting married.

Wedding Anniversary - Life as a Wife


Crazy Days

I never thought it was possible but I think we've actually become even loopier than we were before.  We've always had our own stupid phrases and daft songs but for some reason since getting married they seem to have doubled - from silly games we play in the kitchen every evening to weird nicknames, it seems getting married has made us extra odd!

Wedding Anniversary - Life as Wife


.. and in a lot of ways nothing has changed at all! 

Did you discover that life changed when you got married? I'd love to know if anyone has anything to add to the list!

Love weddings? Read all about our wedding ceremony at the Parlour at Blagdon

All photographs in this post were taken by our wedding photographer Katie Byram (http://katiebyram.com/) Please do not use any of these images without her permission. 

Friday, 22 September 2017

Discovering Durham Distillery - Strawberry and Pink Pepper Liqueur

I know, I know, Summer is over and days in the sunshine enjoying cocktails, BBQs and bowls of strawberries probably seems a bit of a distant memory but I can't be the only person still secretly hoping for an Indian Summer in the North East?

I'm still clinging on to the last few days of Summer and am very happy that locals Durham Distillery are helping me with a rather special bottle of Strawberry and Pink Pepper Liqueur which tastes so good splashed into a glass of Prosecco!

I'm definitely not limiting this baby to Summer and am already dreaming up some rather special Christmas cocktail creations so I can carry on enjoying this as the colder months arrive.

Discovering Durham Distillery - Strawberry and Pink Pepper Liqueur
If, like me, you've never heard of Durham Distillery then allow me to introduce them to you.

Durham Distillery are a small batch craft distillery with a huge passion for creating handcrafted gin, vodka and liqueurs right here in the North East. Using traditional methods, each small batch creates only a few hundred bottles at a time which are bottled and labelled by hand. It's this extra little bit of love and care which made me really fall in love with this wonderful local business.

Durham Distillery are the creators of Durham Gin. Handmade in a copper pot still, the gin is created with hand crushed juniper berries mixed with botanicals including Angelica and Pink Peppercorn, locally sourced Durham spring water and pure grain spirit. If Gin isn't your tipple of choice then the Distillery also produce Durham Vodka using the tails of the Gin slowly filtered through a custom built filtration column.

Their Strawberry and Pink Pepper Liqueur launched this year and since getting a bottle it's been a huge hit at our home bar (the fancy word I use to describe our cupboard in the lounge that's full of bottles). Fresh pressed strawberry juice combined with their signature Durham Gin, the fruity liqueur has a lovely warm finish.

Durham Distillery - Strawberry and Pink Pepper Liqueur
You'll find Durham Distillery stocked nationwide and at some of my very favourite spots across the North East including Jesmond Dene House, Fenwick Newcastle and The Lord Crewe Arms. For more information on where you can taste some of their delicious drinks check out their stockist list here or if you want some for your own bar at home you can.

Rather excitingly just as I was about to publish this post I discovered that the "Finance Durham Fund"; a venture by Durham County Council to help local businesses grow, have invested £250,000 in Durham Gin which will help it move to a new site to include a visitor centre (so exciting!)

Love Gin? Check out my recent visit to the Botanist Gin Masterclass.

We were sent a complimentary bottle of Strawberry and Pink Liqueur as a treat but our love for Durham Gin is very real!

Wednesday, 20 September 2017

How to Spend a Week in Anglesey and North Wales - Our British Staycation

Despite being a great supporter of a British Staycation even I have to admit that sometimes when you're stood in freezing cold winds with soggy jeans and wet feet it can feel like your holiday has been a bit of a washout and that maybe you were a bit silly not to jump on a plane and head for the sun.

How to Spend a Week in Anglesey and North Wales - Our British Staycation


This was us as we stood on top of Mt Snowdon last week. Feeling slightly annoyed after an uncomfortable train ride to the top only to be stood at the summit surrounded by such thick cloud that we couldn't see any of those stunning views.

If you're planning a staycation in the UK it's always best to pack your waterproofs and your sense of humour, something that we almost forgot during our recent staycation to Anglesey when, after a few days of rubbish luck and awful weather, we were ready to call it quits and go home early.

Anglesey and North Wales Staycation - Beaumaris


Luckily we didn't return home to the North East when things started to go wrong because we would have missed out on discovering the wonderful things that Anglesey and North Wales has to offer, despite the ever changing weather.

Here are just some of the wonderful places that we discovered on our staycation and where you should visit if you're planning a holiday in Anglesey and North Wales.

Beaumaris

Our base for the week was Little Hideaway, a gorgeous little cottage in the centre of Beaumaris booked through Boltholes and Hideaways. It took me forever to find our perfect snug home for our holiday but the website was an absolute treasure trove of cute instagrammable places to spend your holiday, I'd be lying if I said I didn't book our accommodation solely on this lush sofa.

Anglesey and North Wales Staycation - Boltholes and Hideaways


Beaumaris was our perfect home for the week and had the most beautiful views (once the rain had cleared!) - if you were going to jump into a painting Mary Poppins style I'm convinced Beaumaris is where you'd end up.

Colourful houses, lush hills, picture perfect sailing boats and streets full of beautiful old buildings - it was a dream destination.

Anglesey and North Wales Staycation - Beaumaris
Wet afternoons were spent on mini bar crawls around Beaumaris where a huge variety of bars, pubs and hotels kept us occupied for hours. We got quite the taste for gin during our staycation and I became addicted to Rhubarb Gin and Ginger Ale.

When the sun shone we were keen to get out to explore the surrounding area. During a short break in an afternoon of heavy downpours we had a lovely time skimming stones at Penmon Lighthouse, a hidden gem that was completely free of tourists.

Anglesey and North Wales Staycation - Penmon Lighthouse

Caernarfon Castle

There are so many stunning castles in Wales and we only had time to visit a few so we were sure to pick out the very best. Caernarfon is a lovely little town and home to one of north Wales' largest and most impressive castles.

Anglesey and North Wales Staycation - Caernarfon


Exploring Caernarfon Castle involved strong legs as we climbed up and down the towers keen to see the breathtaking views and history came to life with an impressive amount of visual displays.

Our visit was kept pretty brief due to my inappropriate wardrobe  (I did not succeed in packing a sensible amount of warmer clothing for a British Staycation!) but one day I'd love to go back and have a proper explore!

Anglesey and North Wales Staycation - Caernarfon Castle


Llandudno

If I were to describe Llandudno to you, I'd say it's very much somewhere people come to retire. The streets are crowded with gossiping Nans and Grandads but it's also the perfect destination for a romantic stroll or for family seaside fun.

We spent a lot of our time walking along the beautiful seafront, admiring the buildings, stuffing our faces with donuts and watching the very cheeky seagulls dive bombing tourists and stealing their food.   The odd glimpse of the sun gave us the most beautiful views across the sea and with the dark and stormy clouds overhead everything looked very dramatic.

Anglesey and North Wales Staycation - Llandudno


We were keen to adventure to The Great Orme, a massive chunk of limestone rising out of the sea and offering fantastic views of the North Wales countryside.

Enthusiastic walkers can enjoy a short hike up to the top of the mini mountain but we wanted to travel in style with a journey on the Great Orme Tramway.

Anglesey and North Wales Staycation - Great Omre Tramway


The Tramway is Britain's only cable-hauled street tramway and travelling up the hill in an original Victorian tramcar is quite an experience. As we journeyed up the steep hill, the views behind us were very impressive and it's a definite "must do" if you are planning a staycation in North Wales.

Anglesey and North Wales Staycation - Great Omre Tram

When we reached the summit of Great Orme we were greeted to a pretty chilly and very windy hill top so quickly rushed to the peak to enjoy some beautiful views before hurrying indoors to warm up with a nice hot cup of tea.

Conwy 

My favourite day trip of our staycation had to be our visit to Conwy. All thoughts of bad weather flew straight out of my head as soon as we drove into the beautiful medieval walled town. Day trips like this remind me how perfect a British Staycation can be.

Anglesey and North Wales Staycation - Conwy
I've never seen such a perfect example of a medieval walled town before, almost all of the walls are intact and you can more or less walk the whole way round the town with plenty of aerial views of Conwy Castle from the highest points.

You know you're onto a winner when you're stopping every few minutes to take yet another photograph, there was so much to see and it felt so great to be getting plenty of steps out in the fresh air (much needed when you've been indulging in far too much holiday food!)

Anglesey and North Wales Staycation - Conwy Walls


If we thought the walls were amazing, we loved Conwy even more after exploring the castle which was easily my favourite of the week.  With every spiral staircase we climbed we were greeted with an even more stunning view than we'd had before. I think I took pictures of the same view from every tower but I just couldn't help myself.

Anglesey and North Wales Staycation - Conwy View


Eat North Wales

Of course it wouldn't be a holiday if we didn't stuff our faces and we found some real treasures in North Wales that would have had our Weight Watchers leader gasping in horror.

Beaumaris Food Festival

Our holiday perfectly timed with the Beaumaris Food Festival, a yearly event held on the green in Beaumaris every September. Being eager beavers we bought a two day pass and spent a very enjoyable weekend eating as much as we could possibly manage.

Anglesey and North Wales Staycation - Beaumaris Food Festival


The most frustrating part about a food festival is not having the stomach capacity to eat more food but we gave it a good go, enjoying one of the best burgers I've ever had from The Little Food Hut, a huge apple crumble waffle from A Lot of Waffle and washing it all down with prosecco cocktails from the The Tipsy Mare and very potent cider from Jaspels.

Anglesey and North Wales Staycation - A Lot of Waffle


Beau's Tea Shop, Beaumaris

As soon as we spotted the tea shop a short stroll from our holiday cottage we knew we had to visit. Stepping into Beau's Tea Room was a little like spending an afternoon in your Nan's cosy lounge. Fitted out with beautiful antique style furniture and colourful teapots we enjoyed the most delicious slabs of cake that kept us going for hours!

Anglesey and North Wales Staycation - Beau's Tea Room
Fortes Ice Cream Parlour, Llandudno 

When we stumbled across Fortes Ice Cream Parlour in Llandudno my promises of not being a crazy blogger on holiday flew out of the window. With its cosy booths, neon signs and instagram worthy waffles and crepes it was impossible not to take a few snaps and it took a lot of willpower not to have a full on photo shoot.

Anglesey and North Wales Staycation - Fortes Ice Cream Parlour
The menu was epic, we wanted everything but in the end settled for a banoffee waffle for him and a cherry crepe for me.  Don't you hate it when you find amazing places on holiday and then realise they are 5 hours away from where you live! Booo!

Anglesey and North Wales Staycation - Fortes Ice Cream Parlour Waffle
The Red Boat Ice-Cream Shop, Beaumaris

Having become complete ice cream addicts this Summer it's probably no surprise that we managed to sniff out an ice cream shop a few minutes away from our holiday cottage. The Red Boat Ice Cream Parlour offered a huge variety of flavours and most days we'd find ourselves popping in just for a quick look at the counter.

Anglesey and North Wales Staycation - Red Boat Ice Cream Parlour


We let ourselves indulge on a very wet afternoon and my delicious Black Forest cone gave me Summer back for just a few moments. It really wouldn't be a proper holiday without a cone and personally I think on a British staycation they taste even better out in the rain!

Anglesey and North Wales Staycation - Red Boat Ice Cream


The one thing we learnt from our staycation in North Wales is that a British Staycation is what you make of it. Sure it might rain and it could be freezing cold, you will possibly find yourself stuck up a mountain wearing inappropriate clothing with water dripping off your nose but where else can you find beautiful towns rich in history, cosy pubs with hidden corners and friendly people to grumble about the weather to.



I'd love to hear your experience of British Staycations - love them or loathe them?

For more pictures from our beautiful staycation in North Wales and Anglesey make sure you follow New Girl in Toon on Instagram.