Two Day Custom Tour Best Of North Wales And Anglesey 11 To 12 November 2021

Water Rail Cley Sept

We enjoyed wonderful views of Water Rail on day one of our two day Tour for Two.

Ray and Jane were staying in North Wales for a few days and booked two days Birdwatching Trips tours as a custom tour for the two of them. On the first day we met at Llandudno West Shore at 8am and immediately hit it off Ray and Jane are such a lovely couple. A few minutes later we were on the adjacent Great Orme enjoying great birds in lovely weather – calm and mild. We watched three Shags lined up on a rock just below us and enjoyed super views of a very close Red-throated Diver just below us. A Peregrine Falcon was spotted on the cliff above and we had frame filling views of this awesome bird through the Leica telescopes, wow! The falcon was busy enjoying his breakfast, it was the male bird, and feathers were flying as he plucked his meal. Two Red-billed Chough swept along the cliffs showing off their aerobatic skills and then landed in view and again we had superb views of these very special birds. The scenery was stunning too and we stopped to admire three Atlantic grey seals hauled out of the beach.

We had super views of a pair of Red-billed Chough on the Great Orme.

A quick visit to RSPB Conwy for a brew and loo paid off with amazing views of a Water Rail strutting around in the open! An amazing encounter with this so often secretive species and the hot drinks were welcome too. A short drive west took us to Aber Ogwen where we walked around to the hide that overlooks the estuary, from one side, and a pool from the other. Lots of birds here but it was a Kingfisher that stole the show, three times with most gorgeous bird visited the pool and posed for us. Again the Leica telescopes really paid off here we could see every tiny feather detail of this jewel of a bird. What a fantastic encounter with this most wanted bird. Out on the estuary we saw Greenshank, Common Redshank, and Curlew, lots of Wigeon and more distantly Great Crested Grebes and Red-breasted Mergansers.

We then headed through the mountains of Snowdonia where the weather closed in rather and few birds were noted though we did enjoy a wonderful look at a pair of Red-billed Chough feeding close to the road.

After a lovely lunch we headed into the Conwy Valley and visited a lovely old church overlooking the Conwy River. Almost the first bird we saw here was a beautiful Fieldfare in one of the ancient yew trees such a stunning bird. Lots of Mistle Thrushes here too in the church yard feeding on the yew berries in this beautiful location. On the water meadows below the church we watched flocks of Lapwing and a handsome drake Goosander. Four Red Kites were lovely to see nearby soaring over the valley and chasing each other.

We ended the day with a walk at RSPB Conwy where it was now high tide and enjoyed a lot of new birds for our already impressive day list. It had been a really great fun day and the time had just flown by that is always a sign of a fun day and even better we were all meeting up again the next day!

The 12th of November was a very different day with gale force winds and showers and we wondered if Ray and Jane would cancel their second day. We arranged to meet at 8am at Llanfairfechan seafront as we were heading west to Anglesey and we were very pleased to see Ray and Jane arrive. Luckily they are made of tough stuff and have great outdoor clothing and were looking forward to the day despite the awful weather. Well it certainly got to a brilliant start with not one, not two but three Dippers in the stream right next to the car park. One of the trio of Dippers posed mid-stream allowing great looks at this most charismatic bird. A shelter on the seafront allowed us to set up the telescopes out of the wind and enjoyed wonderful views waders on the beach just over the sea wall. We had frame filling looks at Oystercatchers, Curlews, Redshanks and Ruddy Turnstones lovely to compare these species. Offshore in the choppy sea we managed to see Common Eider, Common Scoter and Great Crested Grebes before heading off to Anglesey.

First stop on Anglesey was at Holyhead to use the loos and while we were there we checked the nearby harbour which we thought might be sheltered from the gale, it was, and even better held two Black Guillemots! These wonderful auks were seen immediately and were incredibly close, some of the best views we have ever had in winter of these birds. It was a real thrill to be able to really see all the subtle plumage of the black, grey and white birds with their scarlet red legs – fantastic.

At nearby Beddmanarch Bay we enjoyed lovely views of Pale-bellied Brent Geese and lots of waders. It was fun to compare the various species plumages, mostly shades of grey, and structures and feeding techniques of these long distance migrant. The majority of the waders and the geese we were enjoying had arrived on Anglesey for the winter from their Arctic breeding grounds. Bar-tailed Godwit, Knot, Dunlin and Grey Plover were among a host of birds feeding on the rich mudflats here.

We then took the scenic route to RSPB South Stack along the west coast of Holy Island and looked at the sea battering the rocks and beaches it was wild out there! Up at South Stack we could hardly stand up in the gale so a hot drink was enjoyed inside the visitor centre where we could watch Red-billed Chough ride the gale from the comfort of our table in the café.

Next we headed back to Holyhead Harbour in search of shelter from the wind and found some. Here we had a lovely encounter with a Common Guillemot feeding so close to the harbour wall we could even see it underwater when it dived briefly. Ray was able to take some brilliant photographs of this winter plumaged auk not usually a bird that is at all easy to take pictures of. We also had a real stroke of luck here as a female Merlin shot across the beach in front of us a real wow bird.

We enjoyed a really delicious lunch at nearby Catch 22 in the village of Valley a favourite of ours if on Anglesey. Food enjoyed, many thanks to Ray and Jane for treating us to such a lovely meal, we headed north to Cemlyn where the gale was howling again sadly. But Ray and Jane were up for challenge and we did enjoy some brilliant birds here even if difficult to keep the binoculars and scopes steady! A Great Norther Diver was in Cemlyn Bay and surprisingly still retaining a lot of its breeding plumage. We watched Purple Sandpipers on the rocks feeding with Ruddy Turnstone and had super views of Red-breasted Mergansers on the lagoon.

Just time to fit in one more stop, before the light faded early as there were gloomy low clouds above us, at Traeth Dulas. Four Greenshank were on the pool behind the beach, Skylarks and Linnets on the saltmarsh and Redshanks were feeding in the creeks and a Peregrine Falcon cruised above sending the gathering Black-headed Gulls into panic the birds making wonderful shapes over the mudflats.

A really enjoyable two days with Ray and Jane and we really hope we can enjoy lots more birds with them both again soon!

We would love to put together a custom Birdwatching Trips tour perfect for you please just drop us a line and we can do the rest…

We look forward to enjoying great birds and wildlife with you soon.

Contact us

* * *



Our Tweets

This site uses cookies to store information on your computer. See our Cookie Policy for further details on how to block cookies.
I am happy with this


What is a Cookie

A cookie, also known as an HTTP cookie, web cookie, or browser cookie, is a piece of data stored by a website within a browser, and then subsequently sent back to the same website by the browser. Cookies were designed to be a reliable mechanism for websites to remember things that a browser had done there in the past, which can include having clicked particular buttons, logging in, or having read pages on that site months or years ago.

NOTE : It does not know who you are or look at any of your personal files on your computer.

Why we use them

When we provide services, we want to make them easy, useful and reliable. Where services are delivered on the internet, this sometimes involves placing small amounts of information on your device, for example, your computer or mobile phone. These include small files known as cookies. They cannot be used to identify you personally.

These pieces of information are used to improve services for you through, for example:

  • recognising that you may already have given a username and password so you don’t need to do it for every web page requested
  • measuring how many people are using services, so they can be made easier to use and there’s enough capacity to ensure they are fast
  • analysing anonymised data to help us understand how people interact with our website so we can make them better

You can manage these small files and learn more about them from the article, Internet Browser cookies- what they are and how to manage them

Learn how to remove cookies set on your device

There are two types of cookie you may encounter when using our site :

First party cookies

These are our own cookies, controlled by us and used to provide information about usage of our site.

We use cookies in several places – we’ve listed each of them below with more details about why we use them and how long they will last.

Third party cookies

These are cookies found in other companies’ internet tools which we are using to enhance our site, for example Facebook or Twitter have their own cookies, which are controlled by them.

We do not control the dissemination of these cookies. You should check the third party websites for more information about these.

Log files

Log files allow us to record visitors’ use of the site. The CMS puts together log file information from all our visitors, which we use to make improvements to the layout of the site and to the information in it, based on the way that visitors move around it. Log files do not contain any personal information about you. If you receive the HTML-formatted version of a newsletter, your opening of the newsletter email is notified to us and saved. Your clicks on links in the newsletter are also saved. These and the open statistics are used in aggregate form to give us an indication of the popularity of the content and to help us make decisions about future content and formatting.