Cae Du -Wales

Cae Du campsite (near Rhoslefain) captured our hearts last summer…so much so we went back again this year.
It’s perfect…. well….it’s not – the toilets and showers are pretty basic (and the showers cost £1 on top of the £20 a night camping fee)…very few of the pitches are really flat and the tracks on the site are bumpy as hell (and scarily steep in places)…

…but…. we forgive all that because it’s in the middle of nowhere, on a cliff edge overlooking Cardigan Bay. Dogs are welcome and campfires positively encouraged (almost every pitch has a stone built firepit and the farmer sells hefty bundles of firewood for a fiver).

The beach isn’t a wide expanse of sand…it’s rocky with sandy patches… but it’s rocky in a way that can keep a ten year old busy catching rockpool shrimps for days on end and provide long ambling rock hopping walks to gather firewood.

In the evening you can cook burgers (the farm sells lamb burgers sometimes) on your fire whilst watching spectacular sunsets and both times we’ve stayed there we’ve seen seals and dolphins.

There’s not much to do in the area if you don’t want to travel far (or climb mountains) – but for a pottering, lying around reading, listening to the waves on the shingle and the cry of seabirds holiday – it’s perfect.

What isn’t perfect are other campers – Cae Du was discovered by ‘cool camping’ a few years ago – I guess if it hadn’t been Google wouldn’t have found it for me quite so readily. With popularity come the masses…. those with camper vans too big for the site (or Wales even), people who can’t manage a week without access to a television, people who don’t understand that camping involves early to bed and early to rise – living in tune with your surroundings and having respect for the people you are camping next to.

I think I’m getting more curmudgeonly as I’m getting older, less tolerant of people and I guess both this years winners of ‘most annoying neighbour’ had read the reviews on TripAdvisor that mentioned music sessions sometimes  spontaniously happen on the campsite…so one of them had a melodica that he could play one tune on….he played it one evening…like the mating call of an inept lone folkie but (luckily) answer there came back none.
After he left we were cursed by the presence of a man who’d bought a mini harp (and a whole family incapable of talking in anything but a loud colonial bray) and thought the campsite would be a good place to learn to play…. the plinky plonkyness didn’t attract other musicians either although when other members of his family joined in with folk songs they nearly attracted me bearing a blunt object with which to beat them to a pulp.

But on the whole Wales was Welsh… and we came home a day early.

I think we’re ready for a different part of Wales to explore (especially as this year I made it up AND down Cadair Idris – signalling an end to my post chemo malaise)cae du gathering driftwood – any suggestions for sparsely populated dog and fire loving campsites by beaches are welcome.

  • pics by Al.

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