A Post Lockdown 1.0 Getaway

I can remember the conversations at the time. Jonny and the kids were desperate for a camping trip… “we need to get away, even if it’s just for a weekend, It’ll do us all good, somewhere new to explore…” I could understand what he was saying but I’ll admit I was a bit scared. We had come out of a national lockdown, I was struggling with the idea of being somewhere else, out of our safe little bubble at home. Ok, I said, let’s do it…BUT… only if you can find a campsite where we can be completely socially distanced from everybody, I don’t even think we should use facilities, oh and we need water, beach, coast whatever, just somewhere by the water, and not too far away. 

Ever the optimist, Jonny accepted the challenge and began some research. We were looking for all the usual things we look for in a campsite; spacious pitches, a view, coast/shore, walks and/or things to do within walking distance. Our usual rule of thumb is that if we are only staying a couple of nights we tend to stay within a two hour drive from home. We often drive to the North East of Scotland (or did do pre-covid!) and are not phased by long journeys, the kids are quite used to them too. The beauty of long journeys in the campervan is that we can stop wherever we need, we don’t need to use motorway services and can keep ourselves to ourselves, it’s the perfect mode of travel for social distancing! Equally however, we are lucky enough to live within an hour of the Lake District so we often visit there. The pandemic had really taken it’s toll and lots of sites weren’t opening at all, some were only open to motorhomes, others were fully booked. We came across a site in Anglesey called Tyddyn Isaf that ticked all the boxes. We purchased a portable shower and pop up utility tent so that we didn’t need to use any facilities and booked.

We were impressed upon arrival. We were met by a friendly guy in a mask who handed us our sanitised key fobs (for the main gate and for the gates that led down to the beach) and we followed him down to our pitch. He assured us that all facilities were being regularly cleaned and the site was limiting the number of campers. They even had sanitisation wardens cleaning the sanitiser pumps all day. It’s a large campsite with a big caravan and holiday home park but as we drove down the hill looking out towards Lligwy Bay, it felt like we’d picked a good spot. The view is beautiful. We were directed on to a camping field with a couple of other vans and some tents. Plenty of space, and we were pleased to see the wash block being cleaned regularly. Although we didn’t need to use showers and toilets, we did have to go and get some hot water for our own shower when we realised we weren’t quite hardy enough to brave the cold!

Quite honestly, my worries melted away as we enjoyed a blissful few days of beach walks and paddleboarding. We had jumped on the SUP bandwagon that Summer and invested in one, for the kids. Ok ok, it was for the grown ups and the kids (best purchase ever by the way!). A good friend of ours had told us about a lagoon in Lligwy Bay perfect for young kids to paddle in. Our two spent many happy hours in there, the water was not too deep and no tide or waves to contend with. 

Back at the van, we used our standard set up along with our new utility tent which housed our shower, and our little porta poti during the day. We always have the toilet just outside the slider door in the awning at night. Of course, we had our trusty cadac with us and had recently discovered how to use the pizza stone so we had brought that with us for a pizza night. We also took the cadac down to the beach one day for burgers at dusk – after an afternoon of paddling, there’s nothing better. Happy kids = happy parents. We opted to drive the van down to the beach instead of walking for longer paddling sessions, just so that we could chuck all the kit in (wetsuits, paddleboard, snacks etc) but also so that we had the toilet to hand too. Absolute god send. There is a lovely woodland walk down to the beach from the campsite so it isn’t necessary to drive. We had no trouble finding a space at Lligwy beach car park and didn’t have to pay for parking during this period (charges ceased due to COVID restrictions) but usually it would be £4/day. There was a small shop at the campsite and the site offer takeaway food too. A little village (Benllech) for all the other essentials was just a ten minute drive away. 

All in all, it turned out to be a pretty good trip, topped off with a detour through the lovely little seaside town of Beaumaris where we parked in a huge car park next to the Castle with a view over the Menai Strait. The sun was shining while the kids went crab lining and off the back of a recommendation we had ice cream from the Red Boat Ice Cream Parlour – delicious! 

We paid £41.50/night for a standard pitch with electricity in high season plus £5.20 per child (over 2) per night at Tyddyn Isaf

Thank you for reading! 🚐 🌄

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