The saintly sands
NEWBOROUGH WARREN & LLANDDWYN ISLAND, Anglesey
On the south corner of the big Welsh island of Anglesey is Newborough Warren, an enormous nine square miles of dune system and, at low tide, a vast beach and estuary mouth. I once tried walking with my eyes closed here, aiming for 500 footsteps, but after 268 I’d veered 90 degrees to the left and walked into the sea.
At the centre of all that sand is Llanddwyn Island, the island of Dwynwen, Welsh patron saint of lovers. Hers was a pretty miserable lot – she fell in love but then rejected the advances of the young man in question, turned him into ice with a potion from a fairy and went to live on this island as a hermit for the rest of her 5th-century days. Her narrow island is only actually cut off at high tide, and pleasantly littered all over with picturesque buildings and monuments, linked by winding paths: a crucifix, a beacon, a pepperpot lighthouse, and a pilot’s cottage that’s now a wildlife exhibition. WALK HERE: Download Newborough Warren at www.lfto.com/bonusroutes
GUIDING LIGHT The lighthouse at the tip of Llanddwyn Island, with views across the sea to Snowdonia.