Southern Snowdonia Garden Tour
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Immerse yourself in classically famous Welsh gardens. Highlights include the much celebrated Powis Castle gardens, Plas Brondanw with views of Snowdon, the split-tiered beautiful Bodnant in the Conwy Valley and a magical day spent at the unique Portmeirion.
- Italianate village and gardens of Portmerion - famous as the setting for The Prisoner
- Spectacular views of the Snowdonia mountain range from Bodnant Garden
- Plas Brondanw - the family home and private garden of architect Sir Clough Williams Ellis
Great Reasons to Join Us
- Great value: price includes Full Board en-suite accommodation, guidance from our expert leader, transport to gardens and any garden entrance fees
- Accommodation: enjoy high quality accommodation and excellent food at Dolserau Hall
- Expert leaders: our leaders are expert in their field and will ensure that you get the most from your holiday
- Sociability: spend time with like-minded people in a fun and relaxed environment
Located just a couple of miles away from the attractive market of Dolgellau, this town is a pleasure to explore with fascinating history surrounded in and out of the local area. Enjoy highly scenic journeys on old traditional trains through Snowdonia.
Our bedrooms are either located in the main building or the tastefully converted coach house.
Choose your room
• Comfortable accommodation
• En-suite bathroom with bath or shower
• Tea and coffee making facilities
• Single rooms are available at no extra charge
• Enjoy extra space or exceptional views
• Toweling robe Complimentary slippers
• Same facilities as our classic rooms
• Available from an extra £10 per person per night
|• Excellent boot and drying rooms
• Lounge bar
• Dining room
• Free WiFi in public rooms
|• Range of board games and books
• Attractive gardens
|All holidays at our Country Houses are full board with breakfast, picnic lunch and evening meal. All of our Country Houses have a well-stocked bar serving local beers, wine and spirits.
√ Start your day with our extensive breakfast.
All of our bars are stocked with locally sourced drinks so you can really soak up your surroundings.
Saturday: Arrival day
You can check in to your room from 2.30pm onwards. Please join us for afternoon tea at 4pm. All guests are invited – we’ll introduce your leader and welcome you to your holiday.
Sunday: Bryn Gwern & Llyn Rhaedr Gardens
We’ll start off visiting Bryn Gwern, Llanfachreth, on the hillside above Dolserau Hall. It’s an unusual natural garden with pond and bog areas, and also has some exotic species. We’ll then travel along the Mawddach estuary to Llyn Rhaedr, where the owners have combined a series of smaller pieces of land into a 2½-acre hillside garden. Natural wildlife areas are blended with more decorative planting of shrubs and herbaceous plants, vegetable and fruit.
Monday: Portmeirion and Tan y Bwlch
William Clough Ellis created the village and gardens of Portmeirion between 1925 and 1976. This resort is sheltered and combines native planting with more exotic species – all-in-all in a somewhat eccentric setting that provided a backdrop to the cult TV series The Prisoner. We’ll then move on to Tan y Bwlch within the National Park, featuring both formal and more relaxed and natural woodland gardens.
Tuesday: Plas Brondanw & Ty Newydd
Plas Brondanw, the family home and private garden of Sir Clough Williams Ellis, was developed by him over many years. Our lunch stop in Harlech gives us time to visit Edward I’s impressive castle as an optional extra (admission not included). We’ll then head south to Ty Newydd along the coast of Cardigan Bay. Although this interesting maritime garden is exposed to salt-laden winds, it had been diversely planted with appropriate species giving it year-round interest.
Wednesday: Free day
A free day for you to explore the local area or to relax in the Country House.
Thursday: The Dingle & Powis Castle
This morning we’ll discover The Dingle - a 4-acre garden well known for its colour-themed and unusual plantings as well as its wide range of trees, shrubs and herbaceous plants. Then we’ll spend the afternoon at Powis Castle (National Trust) where the garden, laid out under the influence of Italian and French styles, still has its original lead statues and orangery, and where huge yew hedges provide shelter for tender plants.
Friday: Maenan Hall & Bodnant Gardens
Maenan Hall is a hillside garden of about 9 acres set among mature hardwoods, sweeping lawns, ornamental ponds, trees and shrubs, many originating from Bodnant Gardens which we’ll see in the afternoon. Once the home of Lord Aberconwy, terraces now surround the house, and steep paths sweep down to the dell, where a stream runs through magnificent trees.
Saturday: Depart after a leisurely breakfast
Sometimes things happen beyond our control – the weather, traffic jams or changes at the places we visit. If we need to adjust your holiday programme, for whatever reason, your leader will help smooth the way.
During your stay at Dolserau Hall you may enjoy visiting the following places of interest, either in your free time, or on your journey to and from Snowdonia:
This narrow guage railway was the first in the world to be taken over and run by volunteers. The line runs from the coast at Tywyn to the former slate quarries at Nant Gwernol. Historic locomotives and carriages, some dating back to the line's opening in 1864 add to the unique atmosphere. The nearest station is at Abergynolwyn, about 25 minutes' drive from Dolserau Hall. www.talyllyn.co.uk
Great Little Trains of Wales
Snowdonia is noted for its concentration of narrow guage steam railways, all of which offer highly scenic journeys. The Ffestiniog Railway, Vale of Rheidol and the Welshpool & Llanfair railways are all within reach. You may also want to experience the newly rebuilt Welsh Highland Railway which runs from Porthmadog to Caernarfon. www.greatlittletrainsofwales.co.uk
Built by King Edward I after his conquest of Wales, Harlech Castle is one of the most historically important and well preserved fortifications in the principality. Along with neighbouring castles at Caernarfon, Beaumaris and Conwy it now has World Heritage status. Around 45 minutes' drive from Dolserau Hall. www.cadw.wales.gov.uk
Centre for Alternative Technology
Situated near Machynlleth, around 20 minutes' from Dolserau Hall, the Centre for Alternative Technology is at the forefront of researching and teaching sustainable living. Displays focus on green technology, energy efficiency and organic farming. www.cat.org.uk
The nearby RSPB reserves at Arthog Bog, Coed Garth Gell and Ynis-hir offer a wide variety of habitats including oak woodland, heathland and salt-marsh that attracts an equally diverse range of birds.
This quaint Italianate village was the brainchild of the architect Clough Williams-Ellis. It is also well-known as the setting for the cult 1960’s TV series The Prisoner. Portmeirion is around 35 minutes' drive from Dolserau Hall. www.portmeirion-village.com
Harlech Castle image © Crown copyright (2016) Welsh Government
Travel to Dolgellau
Our address is: Dolserau Hall, Dolgellau, Gwynedd LL40 2AG
The most convenient railway station is at Machynlleth. For train times and general rail enquiries visit www.nationalrail.co.uk or call 03457 484950 (from outside the UK call +44 20 7278 5240).
The 16 mile journey from Machynlleth railway station takes approximately 30 minutes. Pre-booked taxis cost approx £30 per taxi. Details of our current recommended taxi company and rates will be sent to you with your booking. The return taxi journey can be arranged on your behalf by the Dolserau Hall Manager.
From Machynlleth take the X32 bus to Dolgellau. The 2 mile journey to Dolserau Hall from Dolgellau can be completed in a taxi. Alternatively alight at Dolgellau Little Chef, from where it is a 1 mile walk along a quiet country lane to the hotel. For bus times see www.traveline.info
From the north travel via Chester then the A550, A5104, then finally the A494 to Bala. Stay on the A494 heading towards Dolgellau. A mile after the junction for the B4416 to Brithdir, take the next turning on the left, after the campsite. Follow the country lane for ½ mile to Dolserau Hall.
From the south travel via Shrewsbury and the A458 to Welshpool. Continue on the A458 and after a further 27 miles turn right at a roundabout onto the A470 towards Dolgellau. Look out for the garage and Little Chef on the right as you come down the hill before Dolgellau. Turn right immediately before the garage and drive along a country lane for approx 1 mile to Dolserau Hall.
Travelling from overseas
Birmingham Airport has the quickest onward connections to Machynlleth. Direct trains from Birmingham International station take 2 hours 35 minutes. See www.nationalrail.co.uk for train times.
Manchester Airport has a better range of long-haul flights. Trains from here take around 3½ hours with changes at Crewe and Shrewsbury. See www.nationalrail.co.uk for train times.
Flying to London Heathrow airport is another option, but has a longer onward train journey - allow at least 5½ hours to reach Machynlleth by train. You'll need to head to Euston station in the centre of London. Take a train from here to Birmingham, then change for the onward connection to Machynlleth. See www.nationalrail.co.uk for train times.
In each case complete your journey from Machynlleth to Dolgellau by taxi or bus (see above).
Harry works both hands-on and at management/board level in sectors associated with horticulture, the landscape and education. Part-time, he teaches Garden Design and Horticulture degree students in a broad range of business and landscape-related subjects. Harry leads Garden Tours and Walking holidays for HF holidays and enjoys sharing his knowledge of the landscape, gardens, their design and history. He knows from experience of this vast field that there is something new to learn from each other at every turn. During his Garden Tours, Harry sets the pace so that there is time to stand and stare and soak it all in.
Dates & Prices
|Date||Description||Nights||Brochure price||Buy today for||Book|
|22 Jul 2017||DGGDT - Southern Snowdonia Garden Tour - Dolgellau||7||£1,019.00||£954.00||Book Now|
Prices are per person
- Premium single room: £15 per night
- Premium twin/double room: £10 per person per night
- Non-member associate fee: £10 per person