Winter was a windy wash out and, so far, spring's been nothing to write home about but one thing's for certain, the mixed weather has been a blessing for the gardens of North Wales. With summer just around the corner, now is the perfect time to explore some of the award-winning and world-famous gardens of the region to enjoy the last of the spring blooms in all their glory.
Most garden attractions are open all year round but we think spring is one of the best times to visit. Without a doubt, it's one of the most colourful seasons with a variety of flowers and flowering shrubs to dazzle and delight. Why not visit one of our top three favourites?
Plas Cadnant - Menai Bridge, Anglesey (25 mins drive from our hotel)
Restoration on this historic estate and gardens began in 1996 and has been ongoing ever since. It hasn't been easy however. Set backs include epic storms, like Storm Eva in 2015, that wreaked havoc on the gardens and caused a national outpouring of support. Thankfully, now Plas Cadnant is fully restored to its former glory and, we might add, not as secret as it used to be.
Boasting three unique garden spaces the gardens really have something for everyone. There is a the formal Walled Garden, complete with majestic water feature; the wild Valley Garden with its cascading waterfalls; and the Upper Woodland Garden where visitors can lose themselves in nature.
PLEASE NOTE: the garden is currently open from 12 noon - 5pm on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Sundays. Check out the Events section on the Plas Cadnant website for a full list of what's on, including the popular Gardeners Guided walks where you get a sneak peek behind-the-scenes of daily life in the gardens.
Bodnant Garden – Tal-Y-Cafn, Conwy (45 mins drive from our hotel)
World-renowned, the National Trust's Bodnant Garden in the Conwy Valley is beloved by tourists and serious horticulturalists alike. Covering more than eighty acres, the garden includes fairytale forest, sparkling waterfalls, shady walks and formal terraces. Here there is something to see all year round.
Bodnant's gardeners are currently on Laburnum Watch, waiting with anticipation for the first sight of the buds that will, in a few sort weeks, transform the Laburnum Arch into a glorious, golden tunnel. The arch only blooms for a few, short weeks and early estimates expect the arch to burst into life between end of May to the beginning of June.
PLEASE NOTE: from the 4th April 2022, visitors will have the option to pre-book tickets as the gardens can get very busy at peak times. Dogs on leads are welcome at Bodnant on Fridays, Saturday and Sunday between the 1st April - 30 September.
Portmeirion, Pwllheli (50 mins drive from our hotel)
This distinctive Italian-style village built by architect, Sir Clough Williams-Ellis, over several decades is a little slice of the Med in North Wales! Did you know the geography of North Wales means the region benefits from moist weather brought by the Gulf Stream? This makes it perfectly suited to cultivating Mediterranean and tropical flora and fauna!
This is evident all over Portmeirion, which is home to a superb collection of magnolias, azaleas, rhododendrons and camellias as well as an array of sub-tropical trees, including ginkgo biloba, monkey puzzles and cabbage palms.
Spend some time exploring the village with its quirky shops and eateries, then lose yourself in the stunning gardens. You'll be amazed by what you discover - from expansive estuary views to secret woodland glades and storybook gardens.
PLEASE NOTE: the village and gardens are open seven days a week, between 9:30am - 5:30pm. Pre-booking your visit is essential, this can be done on the Portmeirion website. Registered Guide Dogs / Assistance dogs only.