Built on the site of the former Middleton Hall, the botanic gardens are fascinating both historically, architecturally, and botanically! A day out at the Botanic Gardens can be different every time. There is so much to see and do, such as:
The Great Glasshouse
This impressive structure is the “largest single-span great glasshouse in the world”. It holds the “largest collection of Mediterranean plants in the Northern Hemisphere”. Even on a rainy day, you will find a little bit of summer here. Walk by a waterfall and see the koi carp in the pool, sit at a cafe in the warmth, visit exhibitions and enjoy.
“It houses some of the most endangered plants on the planet which come from six areas of the world: California, Australia, the Canary Islands, Chile, South Africa, the Mediterranean Basin.”
Apothecaries Garden and Hall
An apothecary’s hall and garden have been recreated on site. The hall and garden help us to understand the power of herbs for healing and experience what an Edwardian apothecary’s shop would have been like. In a little village between the botanical gardens and Ystradgynlais, there has long been a tradition of physician healers. Known as the Physicians of Myddfai, indeed there was a family of healers passing down their knowledge from the 13th until the 18th centuries. According to legend, they were the descendants of the Lady of the Lake. She was said to be found at another local beauty spot Llyn y Fan Fach.
This beautiful mature garden is peaceful and tranquil. This comes from It once being a part of the Chelsea 2001 Flower show where it won a gold medal.
“It consists of three traditional Japanese gardens – the Stream and Lake Garden, the Gravel Garden and the Tea Garden. Filled with symbolism and guided by Zen philosophy, this is a lovely place to sit and contemplate.The Garden was designed by Professor Masao Fukuhara, a lecturer in design at Osaka University.”
The Traditional Japanese Tea House is a very popular element with both children and adults alike. Although if you want a cup of tea you will have to go to one of the many cafes on-site.
Within an unassuming Victorian Glasshouse is possibly the best part of the Botanic Garden.
At first, you just see the plants but then you realise that interspersed with the vines and climbers are hundreds of colourful and majestic butterflies.
Some fly together chasing each other, whilst some bask in the sun, slowly revealing iridescent wings, others you can watch as they feed on fruit and some might even land on you.
As amazing for adults, as for kids, this is one part of the Gardens not to miss.
Double Walled Garden
When the estate was running this Garden was its main food supply garden. It has two walls to provide different sheltered microclimates to enable the team of twelve gardeners to provide food for up to 30 people and extend the growing season. Today it explains how flowering plants have evolved and is a lovely place to sit and relax. Make sure you check out the fabulous walled Bee Garden, where you can see the bees flying off above everyone’s heads above the wall of the garden.
Food and Drink
There are three cafes on site. The one at the entrance is also a small garden centre. In the Great Glasshouse, there is a small snack bar, serving Mediterranean-style snacks and there is also a self-service restaurant within the Stable Block.
Upon arrival to your accommodation here at River Tawe Holiday Apartment, there will be an information pack provided with what-3-word codes for your convenience for parking and destination points.
If you require public transport there the Trawscymru T1S runs direct from Swansea Bus Station to the Garden, Monday to Saturday at 12.00, taking about 40 minutes. Then the bus back leaves at 16.19.
Many thanks to the National Botanic Garden Of Wales for letting us use their fabulous photos all photography is c. Copyright Botanic Garden of Wales All Rights Reserved.