Because of its geographical position commanding the roads north of and through the valleys of Snowdonia, combined with its natural sheltered harbour with access to the sea, the highway to the western world, Caernarfon was the inevitable choice for conquerors to build their fortress towns.
The Romans, who with their European mercenaries, built the fort of Segontium and occupied it for about four hundred years were the first to put Caernarfon on the 'map' of western Europe. With the aid of the catholic Celtic church that influence survived through the Dark Ages.
William the Conqueror built a motte and bailey fortress near the harbour but seven succeeding Norman kings failed to bring Wales in line with English rule. Edward the First then built his castles around Snowdonia. Caernarfon with its walled town was the greatest. The walled town housed the administrators, privileged English traders and artisans. The Welsh were not allowed to live in the town but were content to live in the countryside near their work or villages surrounding their churches which they called the 'Llan'. This tendency persists up to the present day and Caernarfon never became a big town.
When the Welshman Thomas Pennant visited the Castle in 1772 he described it as "The most magnificent badge of our subjection". Today the Welsh regard it with pride as a symbol of their resistance. That resistance up until the Act of Union under Henry the Eighth must have been paid for by great cruelty and suffering on both sides. Gradually both sides appreciated the benefits of tolerance and Caernarfon is now the most Welsh town in the country where many English families have lived for several generations.
The Industrial Revolution brought prosperity with the export of slate from the harbour. The country landowners built their town houses within the walled town and the Nonconformists built fine chapels which are good examples of the architectural fashion of several decades.
By living in their close and small society the natives of Caernarfon have developed a distinct patois of their own. This has earned them the friendly nickname of 'Cofis'. By today the 'Cofis' take pride in their castle and close connection with the Royal Welch Fusiliers. The sailing ships have been replaced by countless pleasure yachts. The National Outdoor Persuit Centre and Caernarfon Airport are nearby. Cultural activities have been strengthened by the development locally of Welsh multi media studios. The new Millennium may be looked forward to with confidence.
Caravan ParkRiverside Camping
Ty'n yr Onnen Mountain Farm Caravan & Camping
White Tower Caravan Park
Estate AgentMedforth Chas & Co
Pub and Bar
Honor Cantonese Restaurant
Laan Maneeva Thai Restaurant
Sopna Tandoori Restaurant
Ty'n Rhos Country House Hotel
Y Gegin Fach
High Trek Snowdonia(Climbing)
Redline Indoor Karting(Motor Sports)
Gadlys Farm Riding Centre(Riding)
Snowdonia Riding Stables(Riding)
Plas Menai National Watersports Centre(Water Sports)
Snowdonia Canoe Club (Cymdeithas Canw Eryri)(Water Sports)
Tanrallt Mountain Centre(Water Sports)
Places to Stay near Caernarfon
Celtic Royal Hotel (0.05 miles)
Premier Inn Caernarfon (0.10 miles)
Black Boy Inn (0.22 miles)
Travelodge Caernarfon (0.24 miles)
Situated within walking distance of the town centre, offering a great nightlife scene and a fantastic location for local attractions such as Caernarfon Castle and Gypsy Wood Park, Snowdon Mountain Railway and Anglesey Sea Zoo, ... More | visit website
Cartref Guest House (0.27 miles)
Seiont Manor Hotel (0.87 miles)
Plas Dinas Country House (2.39 miles)
Stables Hotel & Restaurant Ltd (3.48 miles)
In 15 acres of beautiful, peaceful countryside, on the edge of the Llyn Peninsula and Snowdonia National Park, The Stables offers charming 4-star guest accommodation ... More