Inspiration


 
Free Farm Breakfast Hamper at Iwrch Holiday Cottages
 

Free Farm Breakfast Hamper at Iwrch Holiday Cottages

If the thought of getting away from it all is on your mind, then Iwrch holiday cottages might just be the answer. Situated just outside Betws-Y-Coed on a working Welsh hill farm, they are truly idyllic. The 2 barn conversions provide luxurious self catering accommodation. Stylish inside with all the mod cons you’d expect like under-floor heating and large flat screen TV, the location, high up on a hill overlooking a beautiful valley is the cherry on the cake. For those booking a weeks stay at either Stabal-Iwrch or Hafod-Iwrch during the months of March and April 2015 will receive a free farm breakfast hamper which includes sausages, bacon and eggs fresh from the farm along with a loaf of fresh bread… just what you need before you head out for a day of adventure in the hills of Snowdonia. If you love the idea of fresh meat straight from the farm, you can also buy…

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Top 10 Things a Kid should do before they are 11
 

Top 10 Things a Kid should do before they are 11

So the National Trust launched a campaign last Autumn to encourage our ‘cotton wool’ kids out into the great outdoors by listing 50 things a child should do before they are 11 – all back to basics, simple fun with not an electronic gadget in sight – we LOVE this! EVERYTHING on the list can be done in Snowdonia, so if your coming to stay with us this year with younger ones in tow, make the most of it and get them ticking things off the list. To get you started, here are our top 10 things a kid should do before they are 11 that we think are unique to Snowdonia and can be done in that extra special way, creating those memories for life: 1 – SKIM A STONE – whether its by the sea or on the lakes, its so satisfying when you finally get the stone to jump (for adults too!). 2…

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Top 10
 

Top 10 Family Holiday Cottages This Easter

Looking for a place to take the family away this Easter? Then we can help. Snowdonia is a wonderful place for families to get away and enjoy and depending on what you are looking for, there is plenty to do….. Adventure activities including climbing, white water rafting, gorge walking and zip-lining are all on your doorstep whilst for those looking for something more low key might be tempted by the high ropes courses, mini theme parks and play centres. For those wanting to inject some culture and history into their offspring will be spoilt for choice by the 600 castles Wales has to offer. However, if its good old fashioned time out in a cottage by the sea or mountains where hot chocolate, walking, log fires and board games are the choice of the day you wont be disappointed; there are miles of sandy beaches (with great sand dunes to run down), loads of stunning mountains…

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SANTES DWYNEN
 

Diwrnod Santes Dwynwen - The Welsh Valentines Day

If you’re looking to score a couple of additional brownie points this Valentines, forget looking to the French for inspiration, its the Welsh you need to look to… Dwynen (pronounced Doo-In-Wen) is the Welsh Saint of Love and in her honor, on the 25th January, we celebrate giving gifts and cards to our loved ones. Some go that extra mile by giving a traditional Welsh love spoon as a token of their love…. Love spoons are from Celtic roots and originate from when a young man wanted to show a girl of his wish to court her. Carved from wood, they would include different symbols representing what they wanted to tell their love interest; a key represents his giving of his heart and home, a chain represents a wanting of being together and a cage housing balls indicates the want of children and the number of balls showed how many. These are just a couple of…

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SNOWDONIA BUCKET-LIST
 

Snowdonia Bucket List

With so many unique and wonderful things to to see and do, bucket lists were made for Snowdonia! We’ve put together our own lists: one for you adrenalin junkies out there and one more family orientated – that everyday fun that you can only get on a visit to Snowdonia….here’s to Snowdonia bucket lists! ADRENALIN JUNKIE: Climb Snowdon via Crib Goch (it is not for the faint hearted!) Zipworld Velocity at Bethesda (fastest Zipline in the world) Have lunch above the sea in Anglesey on a porteledge with Gaia Adventures Go canyoning with Snowdonia Adventure Activities Surf at Hell’s Mouth, Abersoch Run the half marathon route at the Coed Y Brenin Trail Running Centre. Complete Y- Du (The Black) trail at the Antur Stiniog mountain bike centre. White water raft at the National White Water Centre. Fly from the Llanbedr airfield and see Snowdonia from the skies with Fly Llanbedr Brave the winter nights to see…

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Top 10 Dioni Holiday Cottages With A View
 

10 Best Cottages With A View

Now for many people, when choosing a holiday cottage in Snowdonia, a good view is up there on the want list. So if you fall into this category, we have made it super easy for you to choose with 10 Dioni cottages with that all important view: 1 – Becws near Harlech A Romantic self catering cottage with sea views. An old bakery near Llanbedr and Shell Island in the heart of the Snowdonia National Park. 2 – Beudy Ymwlch near Criccieth Holiday Cottage Criccieth. Self Catering Barn Conversion on the Llyn Peninsula combining modern facilities with the perfect rural location on a working farm. 3 – Bronwen Terrace Harlech Bronwen-Terrace is a large Victorian property with sea views in Harlech. Nestled on the seaward facing slopes of the town it overlooks miles of sandy coast. 4 – Bryn Du near Criccieth Traditional stone built farmhouse renovated to a very high standard. That perfect mix of…

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TOP 10 TRIATHLONS & MARATHONS NORTH WALES 2017
 

Trail Running Centre At Coed Y Brenin | Snowdonia

So its the start of 2015. For those of you vowing to get fitter and lead a healthier lifestyle, we have the perfect incentive. The trail running centre at Coed Y Brenin. The only one of its kind in the UK, it offers trails ranging from 2.7 miles to a half marathon along quiet trails throughout the stunning Coed Y Brenin forest in the Snowdonia National Park. The trails pass through three different river valleys with panoramic views of the mountains of southern Snowdonia, cascading rivers, tranquil plunge pools, heather moorland and the dappled shade of broad leaf oak woods. Nothing compares to the feeling of running in such beautiful surroundings. No traffic, just nature at its very best. Using a similar model to their world class mountain biking centre, the trails are all signed with way-markers that guide you around the route, making it suitable for both novice first timers and more experienced runners wanting…

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Dioni Christmas Thankyou
 

Nadolig Llawen a Blwyddyn Newydd Dda | Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!

Thank you, Thank you, Thank you for all of your support during 2014 – we hope you all enjoyed your holidays with us here in Snowdonia. With so many new and exciting things opening in the area for 2015, we are set for another great year here in the mountains, on the beach and by the rivers – we’ll keep you posted. But for now, get your Christmas jumper on and enjoy the festive season! From the Llwyd family.

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Top 5 Stargazing Spots in North Wales
 

5 Favourite Star Gazing Spots In North Wales

The wonder of the night sky has inspired countless generations, poets, scientists and dreamers. Today this natural resource is threatened by the careless use of artificial light and so the International Dark-Sky Association works to protect and preserve the night sky for future generations. Much of Mid and North Wales is prime dark sky territory and with this in mind, Snowdonia is currently bidding for Dark Skies Status with the which would further protect its beautiful landscape offering some of the worlds best stargazing. If you are here over the winter period, you will have plenty of opportunity to see the night skies in all their glory; with less day light hours in an area with little light pollution, it’s a great opportunity to get to know the dark side – see the milky way, ponder Orion’s belt and of course make a wish upon a shooting star. So wrap up warm, fill the flask with…

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This Christmas it'll be GRIMM in Blaenau...
 

This Christmas it'll be GRIMM in Blaenau...

Excitingly, the Market Hall In Blaenau Ffestiniog, after 20 years is re-opening and being transformed into a homage to The Brothers Grimm. A German fairy tale inspired Christmas fair will be taking place in the building and car park from 12-14th December. Aimed at children and families and based on the German Fairy tales, there will be story telling in both Welsh and English alongside market stalls selling arts, crafts and food; all in traditional German Christmas style. The market stalls have been created using reclaimed wood from a local chapel adding to the authentic feel of the event. Local artists will be selling jewelery, pottery, Christmas decorations, beauty products and cakes. The food on offer will include one of largest BBQ’s in the country as well as a German swing grill serving German cuisine alongside other options including vegetarian. Drinks will be non alcoholic but again all in line with the theme adding to the…

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Portmierion Food and Craft Fair
 

Portmeirion Food and Craft Fair

The Portmeirion food and craft fair is always very popular and the perfect place to go if you want to get into the festive spirit of things. Set in the wonderful Portmeirion Village just outside Porthmadog, they have over 100 stands showcasing the very best in welsh produce and a great collection of craft makers selling jewellery, woodcraft, textiles and art; most of whom are local. There will be cookery demonstrations staged by Dudley Newbury, S4C celebrity chief along with other locally renowned chefs through out the weekend and Dylan Hughes, the hotel manager will be hosting the wine tasting. The Dwyfo Male Choir, The Oakley Silver Band and Piantel; a harp and piano duo will be performing over the two days and Father Christmas will also be putting in an appearance at his Christmas Grotto to keep the younger ones entertained. Mulled wine, mince pies and lots of festive cheer are sure to get you…

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DIONI SPEAKS AT THE DIGITAL TOURISM EXHIBITION

Gwion surreptitiously left for Swansea earlier this month without telling us he had been asked to be a guest speaker at the Digital Tourism Exhibition!! Now as many of you will know, tourism accounts for a large percentage of revenue generated in North Wales. The competition is high and with the ever evolving and changing market, getting your digital presence and know-how up to speed is crucial. Dioni Self Catering has grown from representing 1 cottage in 2007 to 101 cottages in 2014 with 7000 guests passing through; all managed through one digital window: http://www.dioni.co.uk. With this in mind, the people at The Digital Tourism Exhibition asked Gwion to address 500 people, offering insight and advice on the options that are available to you and your business in the digital world along with sharing what his secrets to success have been. Congratulations Gwion and Louise on receiving the recognition for Dioni Self Catering!

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All I Want For Christmas Is A Snowdonia Adventure
 

All I Want For Christmas Is A Snowdonia Adventure.......

If you’re stuck for Christmas present ideas this year, giving a loved one a Snowdonia Adventure might be the answer to your problems. From climbing Snowdon, white water rafting, bouncing on the UK’s only underground trampolines suspended 180ft off the ground, traveling the worlds fastest zipline, jumping water falls and climbing some of the most beautiful and challenging rock faces in the world, its all here in Snowdonia….. A wonderful adventure will stay with you forever and something you can re-live over and over. So if you are coming on holiday to Snowdonia next year, or you know of someone else coming, why not treat them this Christmas with a voucher for an experience they will remember forever. To help you with your Christmas shopping, we have teamed up with 2 of Snowdonia’s top activities providers to offer Dioni customers exclusive discounts: SNOWDONIA ADVENTURE ACTIVITIES: Toni and her team offer rock climbing, gorge walking, canyoning, kayaking,…

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Holiday Cottages With That Extra Christmas Cheer
 

Holiday Cottages With That Extra Christmas Cheer...

Spending the festive season in the heart of Snowdonia is what picture books are made of – roaring log fires, cold wintery walks, local pubs, family and friends, board games, mountains, crisp sea air….. and lots of eating and drinking! Over this festive period, some of our cottage owners are offering their guests additional treats, so if you are looking for holiday cottages with that extra Christmas cheer, here are some that might be of interest… Bron Eifion sleeps 5 and is a quintessential Snowdonia cottage at the foot of Snowdon. It’s been immaculately decorated and furnished by Jane, the owner and her taste and attention to detail are evident throughout the property. Guests will be treated to a £25 voucher towards a meal at the local pub; The Cwellyn Arms which is located at the foot of Snowdon. Faeldre sleeps 5 and offers some truly luxurious self catering accommodation on a working farm and only…

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Foodie Gifts From North Wales
 

Foodie Gifts From North Wales....

Its no secret that being a foodie these days is up there in the cool stakes…….garlic mayonnaise is now commonly referred to as aoli, chilli jam goes with everything and salad creme is definitely something you eat in secret! North Wales is home to many small, artisan food brands that are fast becoming popular and we love them not only because they put us on that ‘cool’ foodie map, but they also taste delicious! So if you’re looking to give your friends and family something different for Christmas that also tick the useful box, look no further as here is a list of the best foodie gifts from North Wales …. The Snowdonia Cheese Company: With names like the Little Black Bomber, Green Thunder and Red Devil , the cheese board has gone up a few notches from a simple offering of cheddar and red leicester. Beautifully packaged in colourful waxes, these cheeses will be a…

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Free, Homemade Cottage Pie...

As a treat this winter, if you book to stay at any of the Dyrus properties during November and December, you will be greeted with a free, homemade cottage pie on arrival. A delicious treat that wont disappoint; after all home cooking is the way things are done around here. Based on a working farm, there are 5 cottages at Dyrus in total, all varying in size catering from 2 – 7 people. There is an on site spa with a sauna, treatment room and hot tub that all cottages have access to. So if you want to get away from it all, this ticks all the boxes and a cottage pie on arrival just made it even more appealing! To see the cottages in more detail, please click on the names below: STABAL DYRUS – BEUDY DYRUS – HAFOD DYRUS – TWLC DYRUS – CWT DYRUS Simply enter the voucher code COTTAGE PIE when booking…

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Halloween 2015...
 

Halloween Snowdonia Style .......

If you’re lucky enough to be staying in one of our cottages this half term with children in tow, you’ll be pleased to know that Halloween Snowdonia Style does not involve standing around getting cold and wet watching your kids collect sweets! This is a place steeped in legend and myth so there is lots on offer – we have whittled it down to our top 5 which make for unique and exciting experiences you just won’t get anywhere else…… The Ffestiniog Railway offers twilight railway trips where you board the train in fancy dress at 6pm and are taken into the mountains where you stop off in the dark woods for some fireworks and a little something to eat in the creepy cafe. Prices start from £11.60 for children and £17.50 for adults. Penryhn Castle just outside Bangor offers a range of activities from day time Halloween trails to the very popular Twilight Tours where…

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It's All About 'Portaledging' These Days......10% Discount
 

Portaledging | The New And Unique Adventure Activity... 10% Discount

So I have been introduced to ‘portaledges’ this week. For those of you who are not in the know, they are platforms you suspend from the side of a cliff that can be slept on, sat on and eaten on. They are usually reserved for rock climbers who need somewhere to sleep and rest when they spend multiple days (and nights) climbing a big wall (can you imagine!)…. It’s all about ‘Portaledging’ these days and GAIA Adventures are the are the only people offering this unique experience to adventurous folks like you and me by introducing their ‘Afternoon On The Edge’ adventure. This is where you spend the afternoon on a portaledge suspended above the sea whilst the team cook up a meal and provide drinks while you chill out, taking in the view, savoring this incredibly unique experience. There is also a chance to do some easy climbing above the waves if you so wish.…

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Pieces For Places
 

Pieces for Places | Retail Therapy In Barmouth Just Hit The ‘Jack’pot!

Pieces For Places is a new furniture come lifestyle store that has just opened on Barmouth High Street. Off the back of seeing lots of people proudly clutching their ‘Pieces for Places’ brown bags this week, I thought I must go and visit. It is the brainchild of Jack Brooks, who when you walk into the shop, clearly has an innate sense of interior design. With his brother Fred, the two have bought the old Caersalem Chapel back to life and installed 3 floors which now house a fabulous eclectic mix of furniture and homewares. The product offering is great and everything is covered, the idea being that you can kit a full house out from this one shop. From sofas, beds and beautiful chests of drawers to the smaller bits like candles, photo frames and vases, there is a lot on offer and everything has clearly been chosen carefully, including a bijou gardening collection! It…

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Free £15 Voucher To Send At The Local Butcher
 

Free £15 Voucher To Spend At The Local Butcher

For every 1 week holiday booked to stay in November or December 2014 at Cefn Isaf, Gareth, the owner is  offering a free £15 voucher to spend at the local butcher – the award winning Paul Wellings Butchers located in  Dyffryn Ardudwy. Cefn Isaf is a 2 bedroom barn conversion in a truly idyllic location just outside Llanbedr. With the Rhinog Mountains sitting behind you and the Cambrian coastline in front, it really is stunning and the perfect retreat to get away from it all. The barn itself is 17th Century and the conversion has created a very relaxed and family orientated environment – very light and airy with high vaulted ceilings. With a touch of modern against traditional, it has a very welcoming feel and combined with its location makes it a really special place to holiday. For more information on the property, please click on the link below: CEFN-ISAF  

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