Laid out in 1875 and painstakingly landscaped over 150 years, Bodnant is one of Wales’ most beautiful gardens. Lord Aberconway of the McLaren family (which once lived in the gracious late-18th-century pile at the heart of Bodnant) bequeathed the lush 32-hectare property to the National Trust in 1949. Formal Italianate terraces overlook the River Conwy and Snowdonia's Carneddau Mountains, and rectangular ponds creep down from the house into the orderly disorder of a picturesque wooded valley and wild garden.
Spring is probably the best time to visit, but there’s something to see in every season. Key features are the 55m laburnum tunnel, a hair-raising howl of yellow when it blooms in late May or early June; fragrant rose gardens; great banks of azaleas and rhododendrons; and some of the tallest giant redwoods in Britain. Bodnant is 4 miles south of Conwy, just off the A470.