A Travellerspoint blog

Harlech Castle and the historical battle for Wales

UNESCO considers Harlech to be one of the finest examples of late 13th century and early 14th century military architecture in Europe, and it is classed as a World Heritage site

UNESCO considers Harlech to be one of the finest examples of late 13th century and early 14th century military architecture in Europe, and it is classed as a World Heritage site

Yes, I had to actually break out the hoodie for Wales but still no long pants; our guest house in Conwy was across the highway from the sea but it was so windy that I didn't venture close

Yes, I had to actually break out the hoodie for Wales but still no long pants; our guest house in Conwy was across the highway from the sea but it was so windy that I didn't venture close

Harlech Castle was built by Edward I during his invasion of Wales between 1282 and 1289 at the relatively modest cost of £8,190; in the 13th c, the sea came up to the castle, allowing resupply by sea, but today the sea has retreated significantly

Harlech Castle was built by Edward I during his invasion of Wales between 1282 and 1289 at the relatively modest cost of £8,190; in the 13th c, the sea came up to the castle, allowing resupply by sea, but today the sea has retreated significantly

Harlech Castle offers great views of the Irish Sea as well as one of the longest beaches in Wales; the nearby area is known for slate (the industry dominated the economy of NW Wales during the second half of the 19th century)

Harlech Castle offers great views of the Irish Sea as well as one of the longest beaches in Wales; the nearby area is known for slate (the industry dominated the economy of NW Wales during the second half of the 19th century)

The local houses are all made of slate quarried nearby; I wondered why they even needed mines since the hills were made of slate so that you could just pick some up

The local houses are all made of slate quarried nearby; I wondered why they even needed mines since the hills were made of slate so that you could just pick some up

We made a quick stop at this scenic river in Snowdonia National Park; it was the first national park in Wales (1951) and is 823 square miles

We made a quick stop at this scenic river in Snowdonia National Park; it was the first national park in Wales (1951) and is 823 square miles

Harlech Castle is a good example of a concentric castle; it had an outer and inner wall for extra protection, and was also almost symmetrical in shape

Harlech Castle is a good example of a concentric castle; it had an outer and inner wall for extra protection, and was also almost symmetrical in shape

The castle walls are 12 meters high and several meters thick; at one point, almost 1,000 workers were building the huge castle

The castle walls are 12 meters high and several meters thick; at one point, almost 1,000 workers were building the huge castle

Harlech now has the distinction of having the steepest street in the world; we encountered it driving up to the castle and it was VERY steep!

Harlech now has the distinction of having the steepest street in the world; we encountered it driving up to the castle and it was VERY steep!

Harlech Castle is one of several castles in Wales all given UNESCO World Heritage Status since they were built at the same time and for the same purpose

Harlech Castle is one of several castles in Wales all given UNESCO World Heritage Status since they were built at the same time and for the same purpose

During the 15th century Wars of the Roses, Harlech was held by the Lancastrians for seven years, before Yorkist troops forced its surrender in 1468

During the 15th century Wars of the Roses, Harlech was held by the Lancastrians for seven years, before Yorkist troops forced its surrender in 1468

In the late-18th and 19th centuries, the picturesque ruins of Harlech began to attract visits from prominent artists, including John Cotman, Henry Gastineau, Paul Sandby, J. M. W. Turner and John Varley

In the late-18th and 19th centuries, the picturesque ruins of Harlech began to attract visits from prominent artists, including John Cotman, Henry Gastineau, Paul Sandby, J. M. W. Turner and John Varley

The song the Men of Harlech was written about a 15th c siege of the castle; it has become almost a Welsh national anthem and became popular after featuring in the 1964 film Zulu

The song the Men of Harlech was written about a 15th c siege of the castle; it has become almost a Welsh national anthem and became popular after featuring in the 1964 film Zulu

Posted by VagabondCowboy 09:04

Email this entryFacebookStumbleUpon

Table of contents

Be the first to comment on this entry.

This blog requires you to be a logged in member of Travellerspoint to place comments.

Login