A little bit of Clough

I've been visiting Portmeirion on and off since 1967.  My parents took us just after watching The Prisoner and they wanted to see where it was set.  It remained a memory of a beautiful, but at that time a little shabby, place.

It was more than twenty years later that I visited again, as an adult with two small children of my own.  It is certainly not shabby now!  It was then the love affair really began and since then I have been a regular guest staying in a variety of the cottages and hotel rooms.  Depending on where you stay depends on the view of the village you wake up every morning. This is the view from my bedroom from the recent holiday. 

Portmeirion is full of people with cameras.  There are limits to the original views you can take that no one else has taken.  As time has gone on I have concentrated on the planting and how it works with the buildings rather than just the buildings themselves.

The plants, the scenery and the buildings create a fairytale atmosphere.  Helped by the total peace as apart from the odd guest coming through, cars are non existant.  When my children were small it was heaven to be able to let them run around and know that they were safe.
 Clough Williams Ellis made no claims to be a plantsman, but there are some beautiful plants.  Some of the most exciting planting to me is the wild planting that clings to the sheer rock faces that surround the village centre.  The buildings cling to these rocks and the plants cling on with them.  The village is lucky to be very sheltered and have its own micro-climate.  Semi tropical shrubs survive here that would perish in harsher climates.

The gardens have a backbone of hydrangeas - they line the driveway into the village and surround the village centre.  This time of year they are just green blobs, but when they flower they provide wonderful colour.  This year the magnolias were particularly fine.  I now have the urge to visit in the autumn, as the village takes on a different character with each season as different plants take to the fore.

It was a week of misty starts, beautiful days and glorious evenings.

Can't wait to go back! 


  1. Thank you for bringing back memories. I love Portmerion and haven't been there for at least 5 years. Glad you had a good holiday.


  2. My husband and I are keen to visit Portmerion, and this has made even more enthusiastic about going!

  3. @DD. It's well worth the trip - everything about the place is good. The restaurants are excellent - the hotel and the Castell meals are some of the best I have ever had and everyone is really friendly. And it is just really beautiful.


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