Down a narrow, winding lane off the A5025 north of Benllech is Traeth Bychan beach, a small, cosy, sheltered beach facing eastwards. From here you can enjoy panoramic views of the Great Orme and Liverpool Bay, Puffin Island, and behind the heights of Llanddona and on the mainland, the Carneddau peaks.
Traeth Bychan beach is compact with rocky features on each side and a changing mix of sand and pebbles as you move up the beach towards the dinghy park at the back. Red Wharf Bay Sailing and Watersports Club is situated at the top of the beach on a stone and concrete base, and it is from here that you will see various dinghy classes, small day fishing craft and the odd jet ski being launched.
We saw some tired young sailors help guide a tractor down the beach from the slipway and to the water’s edge and align the boat onto the trailer. Given that this beach faces east and Anglesey’s south westerly prevailing winds, this is an ideal place to launch sailing boats and other craft. Here you will see Toppers, Lasers, GP14’s, Mirrors and other dinghy classes.
Around the back of the beach are some interesting rock formations and above these thick grassy steep slopes and from here emerges the Anglesey Coastal Path route running from Benllech in the south to Moelfre in the north. The coastal path is well signposted and there is a gate on the left as you approach the beach down the hill, next to a small cottage which is built just above the rocks and the high water mark.
Traeth Bychan cafe is about 25 or so metres up from the beach on your left and it sells ice cream, cold and hot drinks and snacks. You will also see the public car park adjacent while on the bank behind the cafe as well as on the opposite side of the lane are static caravans. These are a good spot for those wanting to walk the coast or get to the beach quickly.
Come and enjoy the fine sea views and coastline walks from this peaceful beach in the winter and autumn seasons, when there will be very little if any boating activity here. This beach at Traeth Bychan has a particular piece of maritime history attached to it not known to many people.
On 1 June 1939 HMS Thetis, a “T” Class submarine built at Cammell Laird ship yard in 1938, left her mooring in the Mersey with 103 crew aboard to carry out some trials in Liverpool Bay. Tragically, due to some unusual extreme events the sub never resurfaced and all crew bar four were lost. A few months after this tragedy, Thetis was brought to the surface and beached on Traeth Bychan beach, here on the east Anglesey coast.
So this secluded beach, sometimes bustling with dinghies and small motor craft in bright summer sunshine, other times peaceful on a clear winter’s morning, holds memories for some of dear ones lost in the line of duty.
David Phillips comes from pleasant Anglesey, Wales, and owns an informative website covering local news and events. Enjoy breathtaking sea views, or sail your dinghy from the quiet, sheltered beach at Traeth Bychan on the east Anglesey coast.
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