Pick up your rental car in Manchester for the little more than 2 hour drive to Caernarfon. After checking into your hotel, take an afternoon tour of mighty Caernarfon Castle, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It commands the lion's share of attention, but the town's narrow streets and stylishly redeveloped waterfront also merit a visit. The castle, built in the 13th century by Edward I as a royal palace and military fortress, was at the core of a medieval walled town. The remainder of the day is free to explore the town, and dinner will be on your own this evening.
After breakfast, make the short drive to Halen Mon, home of the Anglesey Sea Salt. Lying on the banks of the Menai Straight, it's briny waters produce the world's finest salt. After taking a behind-the-scenes tour, you'll have a tasting as well a stop at the on-site salt shop.
In the afternoon, you'll drive to the Pant du Vineyard & Cafe for a tour and tasting. You'll take a guided tour around the vineyards and orchard, learning about the history of the different variety of vines and apple trees. It will conclude with a sampling of wines in the Cafe Shop. Here, you'll have spectacular views of the magnificent Snowdonia mountain range, and panoramic views of the sea to the West. Returning back to Caernarfon, the remainder of the day is at your leisure.
(Breakfast & Accommodations, Caernarfon)
After breakfast, make the 1 hour drive along the picturesque coast to Llandudno, once a favorite of Queen Victoria. After checking into your hotel, take time for lunch and explore the cobblestone streets. A short drive away is the Conwy Brewery which will offer a tour and tasting. They make a variety of unfiltered, unpasteurized brews offering the best of real British ales.
Late in the afternoon, your Lobster Safari trip will take you along the towering cliffs of the Great Orme. Besides gathering lobster, you'll have the opportunity to see other wildlife from seals to a variety of seabirds, plus the famous Kasmiri goats that roam wild on the Orme. Upon returning to the town; who knows? Maybe this evening lobster will be on the menu for dinner.
(Breakfast, Caernarfon; Accommodations, Llandudno)
Today, meet your driver-guide for a full day Snowdonia Tour. You'll visit the highlights of this fascinating area, including Mount Snowdon, which dominates the National Park. For centuries it has challenged walkers and climbers. Then in 1896 The Snowdon Moutain Railway opened offering now an easier alternative to travel up the slopes. You will pass lakes, glacial landforms, as the mountain rivers of Snowdonia rush down steep narrow valleys to feed the many lakes that fill the valleys. Time permitting, 2 other sites you'll visit are the National Slate Museum in Llanberis at the foot of Mount Snowdon and the "Ugly House". North Wales slate at one time "roofed the world"; as it was such good quality. The "Ugly House" is in reality far from that. It was built to conform to an ancient law providing land for development. Now, one can find a very picturesque visitor center and cafe in a beautiful woodland glade. Upon returning to Llandudno, dinner will be on your own this evening.
(Breakfast & Accommodations, Llandudno)
Spend the morning at your leisure, exploring what you still want to explore. In the afternoon, enjoy traditional afternoon tea at the Bodnant Welsh Food Center, where a selection of homemade cakes including Bara Brith and Welsh Cakes will be available as well as a variety of teas and Welsh coffee.
For the wine lover, consider an optional trip to the Gwinillan Conwy Vineyard for a tour and tasting. Their special hybrid grape varietals are chosen specifically to work well with the soil and climatic conditions of North Wales. Two of their wines; Pefriog and Solaris, won the Silver and Bronze award respectively at recent International Wine Challenges. You'll have the opportunity to sample these along with a Welsh cheese plate.
(Breakfast & Accommodations, Llandudno)
After a leisurely breakfast, take the scenic drive back to Manchester and on to your next Avanti Destination.