Portmeirion in North Wales, an Italian village in the UK
Portmeirion in North Wales is a mysterious private village that whisks you into another realm. Imagine weaving within the mountains of the Snowdonia National Park one minute and arriving in a colourful Mediterranean paradise the next! Located on it’s own private peninsula, this award winning picturesque tourist village is certainly worthy of a day trip, or even a weekend away.
If you’d like to explore more of Snowdonia National Park and the surrounding coast line and castles, as well as Portmeirion, you can do so on an organised tour. However, If a day trip isn’t enough, you can stay in the various luxury self catering cottages in Portmeirion village. There are many stunning rooms with equally as beautiful views so if you want a unique stay make sure you’ve pre-booked.
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The 10 Best Things to do in Portmeirion in North Wales
Quick reference guide
Portmeirion in North Wales was designed by Sir William Clough Ellis (also known as Sir Clough William Ellis) who was knighted for his impressive services to British architecture.
Once you have gotten over your initial awe as you first step into the iconic Italian village, you will realise there are many things to do in Portmeirion than you would first expect.
1) Explore the beautiful Italian Village
Portmeirion in North Wales has amazing picture-perfect architecture that you need to take a moment to enjoy. Why not grab a coffee or an ice cream at one of the quaint little shops and just relax in the surroundings of the central piazza. You can also enjoy old architecture such as the Bristol Colonnade, which is an old traditional bath house imported from England in 1957 or the town hall.
2) Feel the sand on your feet at the Dwyryd Estuary
When you arrive at Portmeirion in North Wales, its both easy and difficult to imagine that behind all the Mediterranean splendour, there’s a stunning sandy beach! Wander along the private coastline of the Dwyryd Estuary, paddle in the sea and discover the many nooks and cranny’s of the hidden caves.
3) Share your respects at the pet cemetery
No, this isn’t a Steven King book, Portmeirion in North wales has its own pet cemetery. With a statue of a once beloved dog at its helm, you can wander the graves of the pets that have been loved and lost over the years. As sombre as it is, the pet cemetery is a pleasant reminder of how much pets enrich our lives and it’s a lovely tribute to them.
4) Play pirates on the stone boat Amis Reunis
Sir William Clough Ellis owned a house boat which was stranded off the coast of Portmeirion in North Wales. While some of the boat was salvaged and used for decoration in the Italian village, its remains can still be seen in low tide across the shore. The stone boat replica makes a great tribute to the original Amis Reunis and both adults and kids will enjoy exploring it.
5) Dine or pamper yourself at Castell Deudraeth
Castell Deudraeth is a brilliant place to visit while you’re in Portmeirion in North Wales. Grab a delicious meal or afternoon tea from the restaurant or pamper yourself with one of the many spa treatments available. The gothic looking Castell Deudraeth is a 4 star hotel so you can even choose to stay here. Conveniently located next to the car park, its worth stopping by before you head home.
6) Take one of the Garden Trails
One of the most enjoyable things about Portmeirion in North Wales, is to jus be able to lose yourself within the gardens, surrounded by colourful flora and fauna. Stumble across magnificent ancient trees, cherry blossoms in spring and inhale the flowery scents of nature.
Find the Japanese pagoda’s, the Chinese lake, ponds and hidden caves. The woodland areas and gardens are a must do on any trip to Portmeirion.
7) Take in your surroundings at the Gwylea view point
This view point is the most stunning spot in Portmeirion in North Wales. Grab one of the benches and simply enjoy the views of the coast below and the welsh countrywide and mountainside right ahead. Located near the pet cemetery and ghost garden, the view point is easy to get to and is well worth the walk!
8) Grab a drink at the Hotel Portmeirion
The early victorian Hotel Portmeirion is a superb place to grab drink or a meal and watch the world pass by. Take a seat on the outdoor terrace bar and gaze at the sweeping views of the welsh mountains. If it’s a little chilly, there are even clear igloos that will keep you cosy and warm.
9) Relax by the pool overlooking the Portmeirion coast
If the weather is warm, make sure you’ve packed a swimsuit as there is a pool and sun loungers you can enjoy in unique surroundings. Just a short walk from the Portmeirion hotel you can unwind at the outdoor pool while overlooking the coast below. It is certainly not your typical pool view.
10) Explore the coastal trails
Just like the garden route, there are trails that take you along the coast of Portmeirion in North Wales. The best time to do this is when the tide is slightly out as it exposes the rocks and crags you can step across which makes some great photos.
There are also lovely gardens you will walk through as well as small pieces of colourful architecture. The Y Goleudy light house in particular is a sight that stands out. If this walk wan’t interesting enough already, it also takes you towards the Hotel Portmeirion. What a way to round off a memorable day.
Portmeirion in North Wales, final thoughts
The Italian village in Snowdonia national park certainly makes for a luxurious escape. It can be relaxing but it is also adventurous as there are many things to do in Portmeirion. I took the opportunity to visit here after a ride on the worlds fastest zip line, Penrhyn zip wire and the quarry karts. Not only does it refresh and recharge your batteries, it really does feel like you’ve been transported to a whole new country.
If you’re an eco-conscious traveller then make sure to also check these tips to make your UK staycation more eco-friendly.
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