Dag Pike finds shelter from brisk westerly winds in this picturesque and historic Welsh harbour on the north coast

Located between the major holiday resorts of Llandudno and Colwyn Bay in North Wales, Rhos on Sea is a quiet anchorage for the night when the wind is in the west.

The town has a small harbour, but while most harbours have long historical origins based on commercial activity or fishing, the harbour at Rhos on Sea was only developed in the 1980s as part of a flood protection scheme.

Evidence of the fish weirs that were used to funnel fish into nets in the 13th Century are still visible, with a P-shaped fish trap still partly shown on the Ordnance Survey map of the harbour.

The sea wall along the coast here is quite low and in storms there used to be a serious risk of the waves over-topping the wall and flooding the properties along the sea road.

To address this, a breakwater was built some 300 metres offshore, with the surplus stone from the construction used to extend the groyne that runs out from the nearby point.

The result is a harbour with a half-tide opening at its northern end, with the breakwater running parallel to the shore extending south.

The harbour almost dries out at low water, with the majority of mooring buoys allocated to the local angling fleet, so you are unlikely to find space here even if you can dry out. Instead, take a wide sweep around Rhos Point where the Rhosneigr Buoy marks the wreck of a paddle steamer, and you can find an anchorage for the night off the southern end of the harbour breakwater.

Give the end a wide berth because shoals extend out, and there is a partially submerged jetty running out from the shore. Beacons mark both.

Keep well south to avoid the submarine cable marked on the charts.

Continues below…

Millport in Scotland

Millport, Scotland

Dag Pike finds a quiet bay on the Scottish island of Great Cumbrae in which to drop the pick

Your guide as you run in with the echo-sounder is the remains of an old pier on the beach at the southern end of the harbour.

Here you can anchor in about 2.5m, about half a mile offshore. This should be well sheltered in south-westerly winds but you can get some swell sweeping round the headland if the wind swings to the west.

There is a slipway on the shore adjacent to the remains of the old pier for landing by tender.

Ashore you will find all the facilities of a small, friendly town with pubs and eateries along the promenade.

It’s busy in the height of the summer, but if you want to escape the crowds, it is well worth exploring the Rhos on Sea Heritage Trail, which takes in 25 historic sites in just
three hours.

It includes St. Trillo’s Chapel, reputed to be the smallest church in Britain at Rhos Point, a short walk from the anchorage.

The chapel can seat just six people and is named after the 6th-Century saint, St Trillo. Further inland, there are the remains of Bryn Euryn, a 5th-Century hill fort that promises stunning views across the bay.