Getting a little crabby

IMG_6893 IMG_6896 IMG_6897 IMG_6898 IMG_6899

So here’s a past-time I’ve not partaken in since childhood- crabbing. Aberdyfi is perfect for crabbing- with a lovely wooden jetty to sit on and the perfect summer day to just soak up the rays. Crabbing is so popular here that there’s even a whole shop dedicated to it- The Crabbing Shack. They sell lots of crab-friendly (no hook) lines, various buckets and other paraphernalia as well as giving out copies of The Good Crabbing Guide and having an aquarium in the shop for you to learn all about the local marine life from up close.

We only caught a couple of crabs in our net bucket on a wire, but it was very interesting to see these Shore Crabs up close, before gently releasing them back into their natural habitat.

Whitstable Fish Market

IMG_8752IMG_8750IMG_8748 IMG_8747 IMG_8745 IMG_8744 IMG_8743

It really surprised me when we were in Wales, that there were so few fishmongers and fish markets considering we were on the coast. I was massively looking forward to lots of fresh fish, but no, nothing at all. Not so in Whitstable, I’ve never seen anything like it!

Are you a fish person or not?

I left my heart in Whitstable

No, really. I did. We spent one night here over the August bank holiday and I’ve fallen in love with the place. It helps that I just love to be by the seaside, but this town just had such a friendly feel.

IMG_8719 IMG_8722 IMG_8731 IMG_8733 IMG_8738 IMG_8735 IMG_8742 IMG_8752 IMG_8756 IMG_8757 IMG_8761 IMG_8762 IMG_8765 IMG_8766

Have you ever been somewhere that you’ve just instantly loved and wanted to live in immediately?

Ultracomida

IMG_6807

Sorry- you’re probably all very sick of our Welsh holiday by now.

Although we mostly ate in, we stumbled across a little gem in Aberystwyth one lunchtime- the deli Ultracomida. The deli had a wide range of products, mostly Spanish with French and Welsh thrown in for good measure, and with a tapas bar tucked away at the back of the shop.

IMG_6808

Having had a mouthwatering look round, we decided that a stop for lunch was in order. In typical Spanish style we perched up at the counter. There were so many delicious options it was really difficult to narrow it down to one choice, but in the end I opted for a sandwich and Chris a panini. Both were really yummy, but Chris definitely made the right choice. Afterwards, we pretty much had to waddle back to the car the portions were so generous!

 

IMG_6804IMG_6806


Before our food arrived, we were treated to some really fresh, crusty bread served with the most delicious olive oil and balsamic vinegar. I’ve never thought of an olive oil as being so amazing before, but this one really was. We were very tempted to bring a bottle home, but it was incredibly pricy and would probably have sat gathering dust on the worktop.

IMG_6810 IMG_6811 IMG_6812

 

Whilst perusing the menu, we noticed that they also opened in the evenings so decided to book for later in the week. We had a range of different tapas dishes, the most expensive of which was a chicken thigh in a pepper an tomato sauce for £3.50. Most of the basic dishes were £1.50-£2.50, including some really good, slightly smoky Patatas Bravas. I’ll have to try and recreate those at home.

After such a great meal, it was impossible to leave empty-handed. We picked up some Spanish cider, a couple of bottles of wine and some cheeses. The cheese I chose was an amazing Ewe’s milk cheese wrapped in rosemary called Romero. Mmm.

As well as the shop in Aberystwyth, they also have another deli in Narberth and much of the wares are available to order from their website. If you’re in the area, I highly recommend a lunch or dinner stop. Oh, and the house Rose was pretty lovely too.

 
 

The Shepherd’s Hut

We’ve been undecided all summer as to what to do for a proper break. Stay somewhere in England, back to our favourite spot in Cornwall, somewhere new or just crash on the beach for an all inclusive week abroad. Given the stunning summer we’ve had this year, I am really glad we didn’t go overseas.

I was in two minds about whether to share this place or not as I think we’ve found a real gem and part of me does wants to be really selfish and keep it all to myself!

In the end, we opted for a week somewhere new, and having found this converted shepherd’s hut online, we found a week we were free and made a booking. On arriving, it seemed even more lovely than online.

IMG_8778 IMG_8779

Rather than being one tiny retreat, the accommodation is spread across two different ‘huts’. The first (the green one above) contains the bedroom, shower room and enough of a miniature kitchen for you to rustle up a breakfast without needing to leave- plenty of pans, crockery etc, a 2 ring hob, sink and a decent size fridge.

IMG_8782

It’s a really cosy little getaway with this huge, snug little bed with cushions and blankets galore.

IMG_8786

The whole place had such gorgeous attention to detail with a seaside theme, fresh from the garden flowers and many an ornament.

The second hut contained the living accommodation, with a larger kitchen area (complete with every gadget you could ever wish for!). Both huts also have their own wood burner, which we  were actually disappointed not to be able to use given that the weather was so warm throughout our stay. Both the living and the bedroom areas have televisions with DVD players and we spent many a night snuggled on the sofa or in bed watching our latest addiction, Breaking Bad.

IMG_8790 IMG_8791 IMG_8792

And if all that wasn’t enough, there is a huge amount of outside space with five (yes, five!) different seating areas, a patio complete with BBQ and Murphy Oven, a lawned area, flowerbeds and a gorgeous wildflower meadow.

There was also a very friendly neighbouring cat, who came to keep us company in the garden.

IMG_8801

All in all, I was actually really sad to leave. Whilst I think this might be a bit on the chilly side later in the year, there are the woodburners and enough blankets to keep you nice and cosy. I see a return trip on the horizon before too long. Now what was I saying about there being so many other places to visit…

IMG_8891

Let’s just keep this place our little secret though? Shhh.

Great British Summer- Aberdyfi Beach

Well then. Doesn’t it just seem like the summer is very suddenly over? We spent the last week of the warm weather tucked away in a Shepherd’s Hut just north of Aberdyfi and having now been back in the real world for a week, I have to say that I’m struggling to adjust to the change of pace. I had such a lovely, chilled out week in a beautiful location and it really could not have been more perfect.

I’ve got all sorts to share from our week away, but I thought I’d start with these gorgeous shots of our local beach for the week. From our little hideaway, it was a 20 minute or so walk into town, but when you can do so over sand dunes and such a gorgeous beach, who’s counting?

IMG_6738 IMG_6743 IMG_6744 IMG_6746 IMG_6758 IMG_6891

Oh, and we were lucky enough to be so close to the beach we were able to enjoy a glass of wine from our swiftly purchased picnic glasses whilst watching the sun go down. I miss summer already.

IMG_6783

Aberdyfi sits on the North side of the River Dyfi estuary in mid-Wales. The mouth of the river seems really wide, and as the slope into the sea is quite shallow, at low tide the soft sands seem to stretch out into eternity. I don’t like to use this word too much, but it really was perfection and I can’t wait to go back.

Just wait until I get my photos up on here of our hut- gorgeous!