Welcome to Llandudno
THERE ARE MANY SHIPWRECKS ALONG THE COAST
What appears from the shoreline to be a captivating scene of the open ocean, golden beaches and headland, was once and can still today, be an intimidating stretch of coast to navigate by boat. Hidden beneath the waves, there’s known to be many historical shipwrecks. One of the most famous is the HMS Thetis, which is often referred to as the ‘worst ever submarine disaster’. The boat had difficulty gaining depth, which led to water being let in to add weight, a blocked tube then stopped the water from running out, the torpedo tubes were then opened, and the seawater began to pour into the submarine, sinking the boat to the seabed just over 10 miles from the Great Orme. Harrowingly, there were few survivors of the 100+ crew.
IT IS HOME TO ONE OF THE COUNTRY’S OLDEST PUNCH & JUDY SHOWS
A classic and essential element of a seaside resort, Punch and Judy shows have been enjoyed by viewers of all ages since the Victorian times, and one of the earliest of them is claimed to be the Codman show at the entrance of the grand Llandudno Pier. At more than 150 years old and spanning several generations, the Codman Punch and Judy continue to put on a show-stopping performance to this day! Daily shows take place from Easter to September at weekends and school holidays, depending on the weather, and donations towards the tradition are what keep it going.
AN ASTONISHING ARCHAEOLOGICAL DISCOVERY – THE BRONZE AGE MINES
There are over 30 Shipwreck in Llandudno bay, including one having crashed in 1642, named the phoenix, a warship that wrecked off the great Orme. Llandudno was originally to have a second pier even bigger than the current one, a full 1,305, it was to be called the ‘Victoria Pier’. Plans were however abandoned.
The great Orme holds a cave known as the ‘Llech or Hiding Cave’, this is thought to be a chapel or shrine of St. Tudno although there is some debate that the sandstone used in the hexagonal walls is produced at too later date, however it is possible that the cave was renovated later on by the Mostyn Family, who owned much of the great Orme in 1694.The Cave was visited by Charles Darwin in 1824 and was the rendezvous point for a pair of German submarines to rescue three German officers who had escaped the local prisoner of war camp in Dyffryn Aled. The rescue attempt was however unsuccessful and the officers were captured in Llandudno itself.
In the Bronze age, Llandudno was a major point of copper mining, because of the largest copper mine in Europe being in the great Orme, this includes six kilometers worth of tunnels some of which are 4,000 years old and some of which are very small, so much so that they must have been dug by children. Some of these tunnels are still accessible today.
The goats all across the Great Orme are actually Kashmir goats, which were introduced to the Orme by Lord Mostyn in the 19th century when Queen Victoria was given a pair as a gift, making them instantly fashionable. This feral herd of around 180 goats is managed by Conwy county council. In the peak holiday season the goats seem to make themselves scarce, but they can often be found around the Marine Drive and Invalid’s Walk. They can also be seen on the cliff overlooking Upper Mostyn Street.
First discovered in 1987, the town’s Bronze Age Mines have been gradually excavated over time, revealing astounding discoveries along the way. Dating back approximately 4,000 years, the findings redefined the understanding of the people of ancient Britain and revealed a civilisation and structure to society before Roman times, which previous to the excavation, was not an accepted view.
A SOURCE OF INSPIRATION FOR LEWIS CARROLL, WRITER OF ALICE IN WONDERLAND
Legend has it that Llandudno was an inspiration for Lewis Carroll’s children’s classic, Alice in Wonderland, and it is claimed he wrote part of the book while staying here. Visitors to the town can now enjoy the Alice trail, which takes you past the wonderful statues such as the White Rabbit and Cheshire Cat, as well as wander through the ‘Happy Valley’ where wonderland discoveries await!
THE GREAT ORME CABLE CAR IS THE LONGEST OF ITS KIND IN THE UK
Built in 1969, and covering one mile each way, the Great Orme Cable car is the longest of its kind in the UK, and one of the best ways to view the beauty of the surrounding landscape. It takes passengers from the Happy Valley, to the summit of the Great Orme.