The primly ordered town of ABERAERON is quite unlike anywhere else on this coast. Its large harbour is encircled by brightly painted Georgian houses built in one fell swoop during the early nineteenth century – reputedly from a design by John Nash. Though Aberaeron's beach is unappealing, it's fun just to amble around the waterfront, grazing in the cafés and pubs. Off the main road at the southern end of town, a cluster of ageing stone buildings house Clôs Pengarreg (summer daily 10am–6pm; rest of year Mon–Fri 10am–4pm), a better-than-average collection of craft shops.
Aberaeron's essential sight lies three miles east at Llanerchaeron, the substantially restored remains of a late-eighteenth-century Welsh country estate (April–Oct Wed–Sun & bank hols 11.30am–4.30pm, Aug also Tues same hours; £6.40; Web: www.nationaltrust.org.uk ). The original, mostly Edwardian furnishing and fittings are in place, along with an eclectic collection of small antiques. On site also are a working organic farm and two restored walled gardens.
Rooms overlooking the harbour can be found at the Coedmor, 2 Cadwgan Place (Tel:01545/571615, Web: www.coedmorbandb.co.uk ; Price: £60), and, better still, the Arosfa, 8 Cadwgan Place (Tel:01545/570120, Web: www.arosfaguesthouse.co.uk ; Price: £60). The best place in town, though, is the central AHarbourmaster Hotel, Pen Cei (Tel:01545/570755, Web: www.harbour-master.com ; Price: £110), with ultra-modern rooms, great breakfasts, endless creature comforts and a relaxed, informal atmosphere. The nearest local campsite is the Aeron Coast, on the A487 just north of town (Tel:01545/570349). For food, the best place to eat is the relaxed café/bistro at the Harbourmaster Hotel on Pen Cei. Daytime alternatives include the Hive on the Quay, Cadwgan Place (April to mid-Sept), which serves fine local seafood in its conservatory, and has scrumptious honey ice cream to eat in or take away.