Porthmadog is situated on the edge of The Snowdonia National Park on the estuary of the Afon Glaslyn river as it runs into Tremadog Bay. It’s one of the biggest towns in Snowdonia with a population of 4,200. It’s good selection of shops make it a natural base for a holiday for people who want to explore Snowdonia and the Llŷn Peninsula.
Porthmadog was only created around 1811 after William Madocks built a sea wall (called ‘The Cob’) which reclaimed a 7,000 acres land from the sea. Although originally reclaimed for agricultural use, it meant that the Glaslyn river was diverted which created a brand new natural harbour that was deep enough for small sailing ships and these started to appear in the new port around 1825. It developed into a famous port later in the nineteenth century when it started to export slate from the quarries in Llanfrothen and Ffestiniog. These slates were to roof the houses in the expanding towns and cities in England and across the world. In 1873 a thousand ships left Porthmadog, some of these were Schooners that were built locally.
Porthmadog was hit by the opening of the Aberystwyth and Welsh Coast Railway in 1867 and cheap slate imports ended the commercial side of the port around the time of World War One..
The tracks left behind after the slate trade turned the area into one of the most popular tourist areas in Wales being the start of the Ffestiniog Railway, The Welsh Highland Railway (The WHR) and the smaller Welsh Highland Heritage Railway (WHHR). It’s also one of the stations on the Cambrian Coast main line which runs from Pwllheli on the Llŷn Peninsula to Machynlleth.
Read more about Porthmadog at porthmadog.wales.
Portmeirion is one of Wales’ finest attractions and it welcomes a quarter of a million visitors each year. It has free parking, six restaurants and café’s, half a dozen shops, gardens and beaches all of which make a perfect day out for all the family.
Seventy acres of exotic woodlands surround the village with easy to follow trails and coastal walks. The village was designed and built by Clough Williams-Ellis over fifty years from 1925 to 1975. Built in the style of an Italian village, it has served as a location for numerous films and television shows, most notably being ‘The Village’ in the 1960s TV show ‘The Prisoner’. It was also the location for the Supergrass video ‘Alright’ in 1995.
The village is open every day of the year from 9.30am to 7.30pm. It’s located four miles south of Porthmadog near the village of Penrhyndeudraeth on the Dwyryd Estuary.
It is now the location for the music festival, ‘Festival No.6’ which has gone from strength to strength.
Read more about Portmeirion at portmeirion-village.com.