For a small village, Aberffraw packs a historical punch, since it was the capital of Gwynedd, the kingdom of North Wales from the 9th century to the 12th century. However, the area's significance waned following the defeat of Llywelyn ap Gruffudd at the hands of Edward I's army in 1282. The royal palace from this time is gone, but there are believed to be remains of it in the stonework of the 12th century Church of St Beuno. The Llys Llywelyn centre in the village offers tourist information, an art gallery, refreshments and accommodation. The village is named after the estuary (aber) of the River Ffraw, which passes under its 18th-century stone bridge, and which comes out at the sandy Traeth Mawr beach. The beaches here are backed by extensive sand dunes, with lovely views across to the Llyn Peninsula. Just over a mile out at sea is the tiny island of Cribinau, with the 13th-century church of St Cwyfan, or 'eglwys bach y mor' (the little church in the sea).
Map of the area.
|Photo by Angela Austin, via Wikimedia Commons|