Where the garden reaches the sky

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Stephanie Grant

Telephone: 01874 754786

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Where the garden reaches the sky NANTCOL Things to do

Mountains, forests, valleys and the sea – it has to be Snowdonia!

Even amongst the UK’s treasured national parks, Snowdonia is unique. No other park has such a magical mix of craggy mountains and sandy beaches around it. In a single day you can hike a peak, sunbathe on a beach, and lose yourself in quiet country lanes between the two. And yet, Snowdonia is even more than this…

Nantcol is the perfect base for walking. No need to take the car to find a walk, just open the front gate and the hills are yours.

The Rhinog Mountains have some of the best walking in Wales with views to the east of Snowdon and to the west of the sea and the Llyn peninsular.

If walking is not something you want to do every day Nantcol is well located for sightseeing. The Ffestiniog Railway always gives a thrill of times passed and the road north has exciting houses and gardens to visit; Bodnant and Gwydir Castle and of course the extravaganza of Portmeirion all are worth the trip.

If the weather is hot the beach will call and the sand and swimming on the sweeping sands of Shell Island beach, Harlech or Llandanwg beckon.

Explore the area…

Places to visit nearby

Harlech (8 miles) is dominated by its spectacular Castle. The Lion Hotel on Pen Dref is a traditional pub with good beer and the town has two good restaurants – see places to eat below.

The beaches in Cardigan Bay offer safe swimming with sandy beaches spectacular views across the bay to Abersoch on the Llyn Peninsular. Shell Island Harbour is near by.

In the opposite direction is the traditional Edwardian seaside town of Barmouth (12 miles) with magnificient views across the estuary to Cader Idris. The Mawddach Trail is an easy and scenic walk along the estuary. The Last Inn on the main street overlooks the harbour, stocks good beer and has a waterfall in the pub! Call 01341 280530

Places to visit further away

The Llechwedd Slate Caverns (23 miles) are good option on a rainy day. Experience the life of a Victorian slate miner. Call 01766 830306.  Close by the Slate Caverns is the Ffestiniog Railway takes you through stunning scenery of the National Park. Call 01766 516000

For something completely different and very thrilling how about Zip World the largest Zip Zone in Europe where riders reach speeds up to 70mph over moor, mountain and mine. It includes a pair of zip lines, a mile long, where riders can exceed 100mph, 500ft high and experience the nearest thing to flying. The newest member to Zip World in North Wales, is Titan at Llechwedd Slate Caverns. See also Bounce Below for more extreme fun.

After the thrills of the Zip Zone how about Surfing at Surf Snowdonia in the beautiful Conwy Valley. No matter what the sea conditions you are always guaranteed surf at this latest addition of fun in Snowdonia.

After the inland surf go back to the coast to enjoy the colour of the Italianate architecture of Portmeirion (17 miles)

Dolgellau (20 miles) is a pretty market town built around the wool trade and with a bustling community. It is a great place to watch the world go by at one of the several coffee shops in the town – you might try Y Sospan on Queen’s Square.

The National Trust properties in the area include Plas Newydd House and Gardens, Anglesey and the wonderful gardens at Bodnant.

Gwydir Castle is a very special place to visit, nestling in the beautiful Vale of Conwy in the foothills of Snowdonia, the castle is regarded as one of the finest Tudor houses in Wales. Open March until end of October. Closed Mondays and
Saturdays (except bank holiday weekends). Call 01492 641687.

For gardeners, the unmissable garden and nursery at Crug Farm Plants near Caernarfon, is open on Thursday – Saturday from March to the end of October. Call 01248 670232.

Discover attractions…

You can always chill out, stay put at Nantcol and enjoy the peace of this remote and wonderful place.