Sorry for the delay, and I hope no one Googled Portmeirion during the long wait. I’ve been a little too preoccupied with other things to post, mainly the fact that my most recent visa application just got approved! Woohoo! They’ve given me 15 more months, which gives me plenty of time to apply for residency come next month. Fingers crossed.
After our first taste of Wales while visiting Criccieth Castle in the morning, we made the drive to Portmeirion. I was still unsure exactly what it was, but I knew it’d be great for pictures, as Jayne and Ian had promised. It really meant a lot to me that they planned excursions with my love of photography in mind. Needless to say, I was never disappointed, and Portmeirion only served to underline that point.
Originally constructed in 1925, the village of Portmeirion was constantly expanded until the 1970s. Let’s let the pictures speak for themselves:
I’ve never been anywhere even remotely like it, so it’s hard to draw comparisons. What an awesomely whimsical, colorful place!
Here I am, pretending to survey my domain (I wish).
Even the on and off rain couldn’t stop us all from enjoying ourselves.
We decided to take one of Portmeirion’s many wooded paths for a loop before lunch.
Everything in sight seemed to be green, punctuated by bright bursts of red.
Even the Japanese garden stayed true to the theme.
We came across a pet cemetery in the middle of the forest, and I can’t think of a better setting for one. None of the Stephen King creepiness here.
My favorite grave read:
My dear dear dog gone before
To that unknown and silent shore
Shall we not meet as heretofore
Some summer morning
I thought of all the wonderful dogs who I’ve loved and lost. So very sweet.
We wandered back to the village and made our way down to the seaside to scout out a spot to eat the sandwiches we’d brought.
I even got to captain my own ship without risk of crashing it.
We found the perfect dry spot to sit and chow down.
After lunch, we continued to explore further up the shore. I really loved all the arched doorways that framed the stunning coastal view.
And framed this chap.
We stumbled upon quite a few tree stumps with countless coins shoved into them. I’m not sure where the idea came from, but the result was pretty cool. It’s certainly kinder than carving initials into living trees.
Around the next bend, we came upon a lighthouse.
And then this incredible view!
I was reminded of Golden Bay in New Zealand quite a bit.
Here’s Andy with our wonderful tour guides, Ian and Jayne. Great shot of everyone!
That was right before I slipped and fell on the rocks. Luckily, I managed to not really hurt myself, and more importantly, my camera escaped unscathed.
The water was like glass as it reflected the lowering clouds overhead.
The rain had finally let up, and we headed back into the village for one last wander around before heading to the car.
It was difficult to not photograph every single inch of the place, with colorful buildings and unique archways around every turn. Another benefit of going on a somewhat rainy day was the lack of other people. On a sunny day, I imagine Portmeirion is crammed.
I’m very lucky to have this guy who’s willing to patiently wait while I go photo crazy.
One last look at the view before we depart!
If that isn’t a full day, I don’t know what is! We drove back to Porthmadog, the main town next to Tremadog, for a little wander before heading back to our B&B. More to come on that.
In current news, Andy and I are off to celebrate mid-winter Christmas shortly. In NZ, since Christmas falls in the middle of summer, lots of expats decide to have a second mini celebration during the winter, when it actually feels like the Christmas we know from the Northern Hemisphere. What could be better than a celebration with friends at a delicious German restaurant after having just got my visa approved?? Cheers!