A very rare child-free weekend landed in our laps and we took the trip to North Wales, in part to go to Bodnant Garden. It is a National Trust property, and so if you are a member, it is free to go in!
Bodnant Garden is about 5 miles south of Conwy and Llandudno on the North Wales coast. It takes about 2 hours from Leeds on a weekend and the drive is pretty easy all the way. The main area of interest along the way is the bilingual signs once in Wales, which can take a couple of miles to get used to!
Bodnant Garden is well signposted (in Welsh and English) once you get near Conwy so whilst it is off a country road, it is an easy find. Perhaps the best part is that parking is completely free – a rare find nowadays!!
What is at Bodnant Garden?
Unsurprisingly, Bodnant Garden is a garden based attraction! However, it is more than just one little garden! You can easily spend half a day in the gardens, exploring the trees, flowers, waterfalls and so much more.
Top Tip! Make sure you get a free map when you enter. As the gardens are so big, you can easily get lost!
As Bodnant Garden is set in the foothills of Snowdonia, the terrain is a little hilly. As a result, those with little legs might find certain bits difficult. Therefore, you might want to plan a nice steady route for them.
The paths are fully paved and completely pushchair friendly. As such, you don’t need walking boots to go round the garden. However, as there is water, children may find the urge to splash and get wet a little too strong. As such, take wellies and a change of clothes!!
Is Bodnant Garden child-friendly?
Unless you have a child really interested in nature, children aren’t going to appreciate Bodnant Garden as much as adults. However, if you want to get them some decent exercise, then it is a really good venue. There wasn’t anything child-specific when we went, but it is a perfect place to explore, play hide and seek and play “old fashioned” outdoor games.
There are a couple of locations throughout the garden which have toilets (which were very clean!). However, as they are spread apart, you might be best to plan a route so you’re not too far away from them.
Outside of the garden is a mini adventure playground, which is just big enough to allow them to play. However, they may be too tired after all the walking!!
There are a couple of cafes within the garden, as well as at the entrance. Also at the entrance are a couple of shops which sell relatively unique items, which are tailored to the older visitor. But still some little bits for the children.
As you go into the reception area, you’ll notice a couple of umbrellas to use (free of charge). This was a nice touch, and given the climate of the area, if it looks like rain, it is likely to rain!!
What else is there to do??
As Bodnant Garden is unlikely to take all day, there is plenty to explore in the area. We spent a couple of hours in Conwy, and had a lovely afternoon tea at Anna’s Tea Room. This was bookended with a lovely walk round the marina and village.
The other side of the River Conwy is Llandudno, which is probably more child friendly in its attractions. As such, there is enough to do either with or without the kids.
On the way back, we called into Chester to do a spot of shopping and to relax a bit. This broke up the journey home a little, although you’ll want to keep on going home if the children are asleep!!
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