“Everyone wants to live on top of the mountain, but all the happiness and growth occurs while you are climbing it.” Andy Rooney
So I took way too many pictures while in PortMeirion so I thought I would split the pictures into two posts, one of the village which you can read here and one of the beautiful walk around the hills overlooking the village!! Because the village was so pretty the woods were pretty empty of tourists just the way I like it! Plus it became pretty overcast during the morning, not great for taking blog pictures so I thought it would be the perfect time to explore.
The woods surrounding the colourfull village consists of narrow, sandy paths wind over seventy acres of wild wood- through twisting trees, hanging blossoms and vast billows of rhodedendhrons. There are unexpected lakes and streams, Japanese bridges, and hidden pagodas.
There is also a Ghost Garden (I didn’t see a ghost), the charming and moving Dogs’ Cemetery, I didn’t make it that far and the eventual reveal of the beautiful estuary, dazzling with light if you are lucky, after a long walk over very bumpy ground!!
The full walk is not for the faint-hearted nor those with small children unless you want to carry them. There is a fair bit to see at the lower levels of the walk, but to see the stunning view over the estuary, the ghost garden and dog cemetery it is a good uphill walk! The ghost garden is pretty overgrown and not the easiest to get around.
There are 19 miles of pathways which cut through forests, secret spaces and coastal coves. I did about 6 miles, I didn’t even realise until after that there were so many miles to walk, so that is enough of a reason to return super soon. I stayed within Y Gwyllt (“the Wild”) is a sub-tropical woodland garden containing some of Wales’s largest trees and rarest trees.
Many of the unusual species found here pre-date Clough Williams-Ellis. During the Victorian period. former tenants Henry Seymour Westmacott and later Sir Williams Fothergill Cook, a celebrated botanist, planted a mixture of monkey puzzle trees, pines, magnolias, camellias, giant redwoods as well as various rhododendrons on the estate.
“Of all the paths you take in life, make sure a few of them are dirt.” Jon Muir
If you find yourself in Portmeirion then I highly recommend spending an hour or two walking the woods the village is super cute but Porteirion has so much to offer plus you can treat yourself to an ice cream or two once you have done the walk. One thing I love about Wales is that they signpost their walks so well, I never seem to get lost (touch wood) and since I walk alone a lot that is really important to me!
“I go to nature to be soothed and healed, and to have my senses put in order.” John Burroughs
I am not sure what the best time of year is to visit a Japanese garden, but I am pretty sure it is not May. The Japanese gardens were pretty underwhelming if I am honest, in fact, this was my low point of the trip. The gardens were not maintained and in my head, a Japanese garden should be super well kept, from what I could see the reason it was called a Japanese garden was because of the man-made structures such as the bridge!
The view was worth every bit of sweat!! Dwyryd estuary is beautiful, but you need to remember it is an estuary and the beach soon disappears with the tide, when you enter Portmeirion the tide times for the day are actually printed on your entry ticket, please pay attention to these! I didn’t go down to the estuary this time but I will next visit, in fact I am now considering staying over next time!