Gregynog Hall

Powys

While Gregynog Hall has been here in some form for 800 years, its current mock-Tudor manifestation – notable as one of the first uses of concrete in modern construction – dates to 1840. It's now the 300-hectare Grade 1–listed garden, dating to at least the 16th century, that's the major attraction. Walking tracks trace avenues of sculpted yews, banks of rhododendrons and azaleas, 300-year-old oaks and bird-filled beech woodlands. Admission to the grounds is unrestricted; parking costs £2.50.

From 1924 Gregynog was the home of the Davies sisters, Gwendoline and Margaret, who bequeathed an extraordinary collection of paintings to the National Museum. The sisters intended to make the house an arts centre, founding a fine-arts press in the stables and holding an annual Festival of Music and Poetry. In the 1960s the estate was given to the University of Wales, which uses it as a conference centre and venue for the Gŵyl Gregynog, an annual classical music festival held in mid-June. The house, largely unchanged since Margaret's death in 1963, opens for group tours by appointment and houses a cafe and shop (10am to 4.30pm from mid-February to December).

The hall is 5 miles north of Newtown and is signposted from the B4389.