A Slice of Italy in Wales


When paired with sunny weather, at first glance, you’d be forgiven for thinking that Portmeirion was somewhere in Italy, when in fact it’s unlikely home is North Wales.

The tourist village was created by architect Sir Clough Williams-Ellis, with its construction beginning in the 1920s.  Its Italian-style architecture was designed to compliment its verdant woodland backdrop.

Pretty as a postcard and beautifully maintained, Portmeirion is a real gem when it comes to things to see in Wales.

Entering the village is exciting – it literally feels as though you are stepping into another  country.  The characteristically Mediterranean architecture, along with the vibrant colours and cobbled streets, will have you feeling like you are in Italy in no time.  I know that this was certainly the case with us.  That said, this might not be so much the case when the weather is not quite as Mediterranean as it was during our visit.

As Portmeirion is a tourist village, no one actually lives there, although there are holiday rentals and hotels.  On closer inspection, you’ll notice that some of the details, such as the windows, are actually painted on, and some of the buildings are little more than a facade.

Portmeirion has plenty of lovely restaurants and cafes so you’ll have plenty of options when it comes to grabbing some refreshments.

One of my favourite parts of Portmeirion was the massive chess board, although unfortunately you were not allowed to step on it and play – just admire from a distance.

 There’s also a delightful coastal walk to enjoy if you’d like to stretch your legs.  I’d definitely recommend walking along at least a bit of it if you do visit – there’s so much natural beauty to take in it’s almost overwhelming.


Portmerion is definitely one of my favourite places that I’ve visited in Wales and really surpassed my expectations.  If you happen to be fortunate enough to visit on a sunny day, it really is one of the best days out to be enjoyed in the country.


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