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Snowdon Mountain Railway and Great Castles and Gardens of North Wales

Come with us on this fantastic holiday to North Wales as we explore captivating castles, historic gardens and look out on the breathtaking views of the Snowdon Valley and the Menai Strait. We’ll relax each evening in our comfortable 4-star hotel in Llandludno.

5 days from £775pp Departure Dates

Your Tour Includes

  • 4 nights’ half-board accommodation at the Llandudno Bay Hotel
  • Coach transfers for our excursions
  • Services of our experienced Tour Manager

Itinerary

Overview

Make your own way to our hotel in Llandludno, where you meet our Tour Manager and enjoy a relaxing evening.

Overview

This morning we visit Penrhyn Castle, where there’s plenty to discover whether you are exploring the luxurious Victorian rooms or wandering through the beautiful gardens. The neo-Norman Castle is the former home of the Pennant family and was rebuilt between 1820-1833 using profits from the North Wales slate industry and sugar plantations in Jamaica. There is free time at leisure to explore the castle and grounds this morning before we head to Beaumaris on Anglesey, a captivating seaside town. Perhaps take a stroll along the seafront and take in the views of the Menai Strait or walk through the charming streets with pastel-painted cottages. This afternoon we head to Plas Cadnant Hidden Gardens. Described as one of North Wales’ best kept secrets, the hidden world of Plas Cadnant Gardens is situated at the side of the Menai Strait. In 1996 the semi-derelict estate was purchased by Anthony Tavernor, a former dairy farmer from Staffordshire. Work began on a huge programme of restoring the historic buildings and gardens. Large areas had disappeared under a dense canopy of self-seeded trees, laurel, and wild rhododendron, and the walled garden and valley areas were only accessible with the use of a chainsaw. Plas Cadnant Hidden Gardens have undergone a dramatic transformation over the last quarter of a century, and with contrasting formal and picturesque elements, they extend to some 10 acres. On arrival we have tea or coffee and cake, before enjoying a guided tour of the gardens, after which there is free time to explore further. Discover the estate’s history from the early 19th century, through to its decline and to the rediscovery and restoration of the gardens. Absorb the formal beauty of the walled garden and lose yourself in the stunning valley gardens. Later this afternoon the coach returns us to the hotel. Dinner is included this evening.

Includes Breakfast

Includes Dinner

Overview

We start our day with an included visit to Gwydir castle. Gwydir is one of the most important Tudor houses in Wales and was acquired in 1994 by Peter Welford and author Judy Corbett. At this point it was in desperate need of restoration, so they took on the mammoth task of restoring the house and gardens, whilst managing to retain Gwydir's timeless atmosphere and natural beauty. Of particular note is the seventeenth century panelled dining room, which was bought by William Randolph Hearst of Citizen Kane fame, and has now been reinstated in its rightful home of Gwydir. A guided tour will take you back through over 500 years of history as the castle shares its stories and secrets, followed by an included cream tea and further time to explore the gardens and admire the resident peacocks. Next, we head to the village of Llanberis which sits on the southern bank of Lake Padarn, and the foot of Mount Snowdon, the highest mountain in Wales at 1,085 metres. We board the Snowdon Mountain Railway for a return journey to the summit and the visitor centre, enjoying fantastic views over the valley as the train makes its way up the 4-mile track. We return by coach to the hotel, where we enjoy dinner this evening.

Includes Breakfast

Includes Dinner

Overview

This morning we head for Bodrhyddan Hall, the home of Lord Langford and his family. Bodrhyddan has been home to successive generations of the same family and is one of the few remaining family-owned stately homes in Wales. As the hall passed through the generations, styles and tastes changed, with the most recent additions being designed in 1874 by the renowned architect, William Eden Nesfield. The gardens cover around 12 acres and include a formal parterre, cascading lawns, and a Japanese walk of life. The garden is home to a number of native trees and others from further afield, including giant sequoia, cedar of Lebanon and an Indian bean tree. On arrival we enjoy a guided tour, which gives great insight into this beautiful family home. After the tour we enjoy coffee and cake before exploring the gardens at leisure. Later, we head to Bodnant Garden for an afternoon exploring at your own pace. Spanning across 80 acres and over 250 years of horticultural history, the National Trust’s Bodnant Garden is home to five Italianate terraces, wildflower meadows, woodland, and riverside gardens. From champion trees and national botanic collections, seasonal delights include daffodils, bluebells, camellias, magnolias, the laburnum arch, and rhododendrons in spring; roses, waterlilies and wildflowers in the summer and rich autumn colours which lead into a stunning display in the winter garden. When Victorian industrialist Henry Davis Pochin bought Bodnant at auction in 1874, it was an estate with a walled garden, woods, and plantations. It was Pochin's grand vision which originally shaped Bodnant into the world-renowned garden that we see today. Gifted to the National Trust in 1949, the donor family continue to maintain a link to the garden which has, in a new era of 21st century developments, brought about the opening of previously private areas such as the Winter Garden, Old Park, Yew Dell, the Far End and Furnace Wood. After our visit we return to the hotel by coach and dine together.

Includes Breakfast

Includes Dinner

Overview

After breakfast you are free to check out of the hotel and depart at leisure; you could even take the opportunity to make your way up the Great Orme in Llandudno or visit the neighbouring town of Conwy before you make your way home. **Accessibility information** **Plas Cadnant Gardens** The gardens are divided into two main areas. The valley garden has steeply sloping paths and for this reason we do not recommend wheelchair access to this area. There is a viewing point from which wheelchair users can look down over the valley gardens. For those on foot, but with more limited mobility, we would remind you that going down can be quite easy but walking back up again can be a challenge. **Bodnant Garden** Some areas of the garden are not suitable for those with limited mobility and if using certain mobility aids, such as small scooters. Most paths are compressed shingle, though there are also mown grass paths and gravel paths, and these surfaces can be adversely affected by the weather and may be difficult for wheelchairs, pushchairs and mobility scooters. There are some steep paths within the garden. There are many steps within the garden, but they are all avoidable. Please ask at visitor reception for an access map. **Penrhyn Castle, Gwydir Castle & Bodrhyddan Hall** These buildings all have steps inside. ***Please note:**We cannot guarantee that all our rail journeys will be steam hauled*

Includes Breakfast

Accommodation

You will stay for four nights at the Llandudno Bay Hotel.

Llandudno Bay Hotel

The 4-star Llandudno Bay Hotel is located a stone’s through from the beach and overlooks the picturesque promenade. Just a mile from Llandudno Railway Station, Llandudno Bay Hotel is a 20-minute stroll from the Great Orme Tramway, and nearby Conwy and the beautiful Snowdonia National Park are only a 15-minute drive away. Relax in the hotel bar and enjoy a full Welsh Breakfast in the morning and evening meal in the hotel’s restaurant. Although there is no car park on site, there is plenty of roadside parking on the promenade at the front of the hotel on a first-come, first-served basis.

Hotel Facilities

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General
  • 4 Star
  • Guest Lounge
  • Restaurant
Room
  • TV
  • Tea and Coffee Making Facilities
  • Hairdryer
  • Free Wifi
Accessibility
  • Lift
  • Disabled Rooms Available
  • Ground Floor Rooms on Request
Hotel
  • Guest Lounge
  • Restaurant
  • Lift
  • WiFi Available