I think we need to get peoples experiences of Porthmadog on here so that people know what to expect when they go there, we returned yesterday from a 4 night break at Haven Greenacres on the outskirts of Porthmadog and it has to be said that Porthmadog is somewhat disconcerting when you go there not knowing what you will find!
We stayed nearby as a base to go up Snowdon which we successfully summitted with great pride! no cheating, no catching trains just a gruelling 2.5 hour climb up our first ever mountain and 2.5 hours back down again! loved it!
However back to Porthmadog! I expected to find a plethera of cozy country pubs and was very dissappointed! The Australia Inn is a hole with urine soaked toilets! nice sounding menu but not at all appealing to eat in! The Ship Inn was not very cozy or atmospheric either, Spooners was a bit dirty, smelly and rubbish to say it had so many pub of the year awards certificates on the walls! Red Lion was scruffy and the women behind the bar were quite abrasive and prattled on in welsh. The railway station pub was not too bad and other than that you need to go out to Tremadog to find some nice welcoming comfy pubs!
There are quite a few cafes to choose from during the day but to eat out at night Porthmadog is very very very limited! We went to passage to india 2 nights out of four - cracking indian it is! I highly reccomend! We ate one night at Tremadog and one night on the harbour in porthmadog where my partner paid £16 for a sea bass that was not £16 worth of quality food when it arrived, my steak and ale pie was nice but the trimmings like chips and veg arrived luke warm which for the price should be hot! - that is another thing about Porthmadog, when you do find places to eat, they are expensive averaging £15 for steak and chips and often more!
For those of us staying at the numerous caravan parks at morfa bychan, the evenings were a struggle as there is nowhere to really go in porthmadog plus the bus service out to Morfa bychan stops at tea time and the country road between the two places is an unwalkable death trap after dark.
Had some nice food at the Grapevine Bistro, I also highly reccommend this little gem.
Porthmadog is pretty but it is like the land that time forgot to say that it is a tourist destination! It seems to be stuck in 1971 and has resisted any attempt at modernisation bar the fact that some shops and pubs have evidently closed down.
Again though, the scenery is absolutely stunning! I think the tourism board should take a look at what they are selling to the tourists though.