North Wales,  UK

Bodnant Garden in September

I set out this year with joyful intentions of visiting National Trust Bodnant Garden every month. To watch the seasonal changes, take lovely photos and write about it on the blog. We had lovely visits in January and February, but our March visit was abandoned, so here we are in September.

Bodnant is about as Covid Safe as you can wish for

Booking ahead is essential for all National Trust visits now. Tickets for timed entry are released every Friday and it couldn’t be easier. You just need one eye on the weather app and the other eye on Eventbrite. Our trip is booked for a glorious Tuesday afternoon – and it didn’t disappoint.  Important to note that if you turn up without a booking, you will sadly be turned away.

Your tickets are scanned in the car park through a closed window. There’s a suggested one way route round the garden. But apart from that – it’s pretty much normal.

Tea & Toilets

One of the joys of Bodnant (and there are many) is that however full the car park looks when you arrive, you hardly see a soul on your way round. There’s so much space and lots of lovely separate areas where visitors are well spread out. No danger of bumping into anyone that you didn’t come with. 

All the toilets are open. Happy days. And the Pavilion Tea Room is offering takeaway. Is there a more delightful prospect than tea and scones in the garden after a big walk round the garden? If you can’t wait for the cafe, and you get peckish on the way round, you can take a picnic. And joy of joys – your 4 legged friend can come too, as long as they’re well behaved around ducks!

Which way to walk?

Our favoured route is always a clockwise circuit of the whole garden. We start at the Winter Garden, stroll across Old Park and through Yew Dell. It’s a gentle slope down to Far End, then along the pretty riverside to Old Mill. Happily you will find the conveniences here and a chance to sit down.

Pin Mill and the Terraces are always a joyful reward for getting up the steep hill. There’s plenty of benches along the way for puffed walkers to pretend they’ve just stopped for the view. 

What to look out for at Bodnant?

I’ve never visited Bodnant in September before. It really did feel like the whole garden was breathing out. Pausing between summer and autumn. Resting after the sheer effort of producing a blaze of summer blooms. Waiting in the lull that comes with chillier days and falling leaves.  If you’re clinging onto summer, the roses are still blooming their little hearts out on the terraces. Look out for the purple verbena strutting her stuff in the borders. If you’re longing for signs of autumn, you’ll see change everywhere. Look up for the stunning burgundy Acer trees. Look down for pretty snowberries and autumn crocuses bursted through the beds.

Bodnant is one of my favourite places and we’re so blessed to have it on our doorstep.  But, Conwy residents, listen up. They can lock us down, but they can’t stop us visiting our glorious Bodnant. I’ll be back in a few weeks for our October visit, and I can’t wait. We did October last year and it was out of this world. 

Are you a regular at Bodnant? What’s your favourite month to go? 

That’s all for now

Judith x

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