by webmaster, 3rd July 2023
Wales has an historic link with ice-cream making, which means there’ll be a wonderful selection to choose from after a summer walk along the coast
Ice cream is the quintessential summer seaside treat – and the ideal indulgence after a coastal walk. But enjoying a lick of ice-cold sweetness is nothing new.
The Ancient Greeks enjoyed snow mixed with honey more than 2,000 years ago, while more sophisticated versions date back to Italian noblewoman Catherine de’ Medici, who employed chefs that had recipes for flavoured ices or sorbets in the 1530s.
A century later, Charles I of England was reported to be so impressed by “frozen snow” that he offered his ice-cream maker a lifetime pension in return for keeping the formula a secret.
In Wales, there's always been a strong Italian link, thanks to immigrants mainly from the Apennine Mountains (and, in particular, the town of Bardi) establishing parlours around the Welsh coastline from the 1890s, many of which are still going today. These include Forte’s in Llandudno and Fecci’s in Tenby, Pembrokeshire.
Forte’s dates back to 1926, when it was established by Italian immigrant Onorio Forte; it’s now run by his grandson, David, and sells 35 varieties, including the award-winning Classic Vanilla. Meanwhile, Fecci’s Ice Cream Parlour was established in the 1930s and has been voted ‘Best Ice Cream Parlour in Wales’.
Elsewhere, The Hive in Aberaeron may not boast such classic Italian roots, but it does have its famous Honey Ice Cream, made on the premises.
First, of course, you'll need to earn it. And we've three walks that'll end in getting your just desserts. Click on the following route numbers for print-ready PDFs:
Route 1 – A short(ish) but steep circular walk from Llandudno with some of the best coastal views in North Wales
Route 2 – This walk takes you inland up a wooded valley from the pretty Ceredigion town of Aberaeron
Route 3 – An easy amble that takes in the interesting and varied architecture of the pretty Pembrokeshire resort of Tenby
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