Watery wonders

Highlights... woodland streams, wildlife, waterfalls, pond dipping, leaping salmon, stepping stones

Soak in the abundance of water in our South and West Wales gardens. It may sit in limpid pools, rush over waterfalls, or ripple along streams, but it always stamps its individual look on each garden.

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Aberglasney Gardens

Ancient cloisters, superb views, visiting wildlife, and a splendid mansion, Aberglasney blends ancient and modern with a glorious garden at its heart.

Flower power

From spring bulbs to blowsy summer roses, jewel-coloured autumn leaves to rugged trees in winter, savour year round delights in the dynamic gardens of South Wales.

Penllergare Valley Woods

Come and be part of the restoration scheme that is uncovering and restoring to its former glory an amazing Victorian garden of cascading water and dramatic sweeping terraces.

Whether it is a still pond or a rushing river, water finds the way to make a special impact

Water offers the most fun! And water is in abundance in South and West Wales. It’s good to paddle in, to swing across on a rope, to jump across on stepping stones or just to walk alongside enjoying the wildlife and the streamside flowers. At the National Trust’s Colby Woodland Garden, everyone, especially children, is encouraged to have fun with the waters of the Colby Stream, from racing yellow plastic ducks under the bridges to pond dipping. Otters, water shrews, dragonflies and dippers enjoy the watery landscape too. More sedately, in the walled garden, you can walk beside an elegant rill that runs down from the white painted gazebo.

At Penllergare near Swansea the River Llan is a star performer. It gushes out from under the M4 into a serene lake, before tumbling over the waterfall dam with three cascades where salmon and trout can often be seen, in season, trying to make the leap up the falls. The calm surfaces of the pond at Scolton in Pembrokeshire give visitors ample opportunity to watch the ducks and wild birds from secret hides on its edges. Aberglasney’s woodland streams make a safe haven for shrews, while otters come up from the River Tywi to feast on the easy pickings of freshwater eels in the garden pond.