Tuesday, 25 February 2014

BULL BAY AND CEMAES BAY



The village of Bull Bay has the distinction of being the most northerly village in Wales, and it also has the most northerly golf course.  There was a busy fishing port and shipbuilding facility here in the 19th century, but nowadays it is purely a holiday village, with plenty of caves and rock pools for the kids to explore.  If you don't mind a bit of a walk, the secluded little beach of Porth Wen can be found by strolling for one and a half miles along the cliff top to the west of Bull Bay.  On the east side of the bay is the tiny island of East Mouse, where in 1877 the passenger liner SS Dakota, en route to New York, sank and broke into three pieces.  Thankfully, all those on board were saved by the Elenor lifeboat.  The wreck is frequented by divers, who have recovered pottery from the vessel.  

A short distance around the coast from Bull Bay is Cemaes Bay, centred around a picturesque harbour with sandy beaches on either side - Traeth Mawr or Big Beach with rock pools and a cave, and Traeth Bach or Little Beach, composed of sand and shingle.  Like Bull Bay, the village of Cemaes used to be a fishing port, principally for herring, and it too was a busy port in the 18th and 19th centuries, shipping out locally quarried limestone, marble and bricks from the Klondyke Brickwords, and importing coal and flour.  All this port activity was accompanied by a thriving line in smuggling, making use of the numerous coves and caves in the area.  There is a Heritage Centre and cafe in the High Street with displays and artefacts relating to the locality.  The clifftop path north of the village leads to the 14th century St Patrick's Church (Llanbadrig), where there is a cave, a holy well and early Christian stone carvings.  About 3 miles to the west is the CemlynBay Nature Reserve, which in summer plays host to one of the largest breeding colonies of sandwich terns.   

Map of the area. 

The harbour at Cemaes Bay

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