THROUGHOUT September some of the special places in National Trust Cymru’s care will be taking part in Cadw’s Open Doors heritage festival. Free entry on selected dates will give visitors the opportunity to explore and discover something new about Wales’ heritage. 

Funded and organised by Cadw, Open Doors returns this month after two years, with sites and organisations across Wales taking part.  

From world-class gardens to grand mansions and castles, National Trust Cymru have something for everyone to enjoy.  

North Wales 

Bodnant Garden, Conwy

Saturday, September 10 and Sunday, September 11, 9.30am to 5pm.  

This world-famous garden was created over 150 years, with plants collected and brought to Britain from far afield and the incredible vision of generations of head gardeners.  

With a stunning backdrop of the Carneddau mountains of Snowdonia and year-around colour, the garden is a delight for the senses. 

Chirk Castle, Wrexham 

Saturday, September 17, 10am to 5pm.  

Chirk Castle is a magnificent medieval fortress of the Welsh Marches.Visitors can explore the servants’ hall, the parade of State Rooms and – for the intrepid – the dungeons and murder holes!  

Outside the castle walls, enjoy the award-winning garden’s clipped yews and  over 480 acres of parkland perfect for wandering. 

While there is no step free or wheelchair access to the castle interior, contact Chirk Castle to reserve the tramper (an all-terrain mobility scooter) to explore the gardens and estate.  

A view of the Pin Mill across the garden in Autumn at Bodnant Garden, Conwy.

Erddig, Wrexham 

Saturday, September 17, 10am to 5pm.  

Sitting on a dramatic escarpment above the winding Clywedog river, Erddig tells the 250-year story of a gentry family’s relationship with its servants. 

Outdoors lies a fully restored garden ripe for exploring, with trained fruit trees and exuberant herbaceous borders and a 1,200-acre pleasure park, discover the ‘cup and saucer’ cascade or explore the earthworks of a Norman motte-and-bailey castle.   

Penrhyn Castle and Garden, Bangor

 Saturday, September 10 and Sunday, September 11, 10am to 4pm, last entry 3pm.  

High on a hill with a view of Snowdonia, Penrhyn Castle’s formidable architecture, interiors and fine art collection lean on a history of sugar and slate fortunes, and social unrest.  

Penrhyn Castle is surrounded by gardens and grounds perfect for a September stroll, from the junglesque Bog Garden to a moment of calm in the meticulous walled garden.  

Plas Newydd House and Garden, Anglesey

Saturday, September 24 and Sunday, September 25, 10.30am to 4pm.  

Set on the shores of the Menai Strait, this elegant house was redesigned in the 18th century and is famously home to Rex Whistler’s 58ft mural. This Autumn, enjoy Rex Unfinished, an exhibition of unfinished artworks by Rex, some of which are displayed for the first time in over a decade.  

In the gardens, wander the terraces and enjoy the early Autumn colour, head to the arboretum to see the changing September hues and walk beneath the shady canopy of the Chilean beeches.  

Visitors inside the Glasshouse at Dyffryn House and Gardens, Vale of Glamorgan, Wales

Tŷ Mawr Wybrnant, Snowdonia 

Saturday, September 17, 10am to 4pm.  

Nestled in the cwm is Tŷ Mawr Wybrnant: a modest 16th-century farmhouse. This was the birthplace of Bishop William Morgan, the first person to translate the whole Bible into Welsh, ensuring the survival of the language.   

For Open Doors, the farmhouse will be open and some of the Bible collection from all over the world will be displayed.  

Mid Wales 

Powis Castle and Garden, Welshpool

Saturday, September 17, 10am to 5pm. Castle opens 12 noon, last entry 3.30pm.  

This medieval castle built in the 13th century towers above the world-famous gardens. Powis houses one of the world’s great collections of art and historical objects, including one of

 the UK’s most significant collections of South Asian objects, displayed in the Clive Museum.  

The Baroque garden’s many original features include 17th-century Italianate terraces, and the 30ft high, cloudlike yew hedges have been delighting visitors for centuries. Assistance dogs only are allowed in the castle and garden at this particular time of year. 

Children playing in the gardens at Erddig, Clwyd. Erddig in Wrexham tells the story of the relationship between the gentry and servants who lived in this house.

South Wales 

Tredegar House, Newport

Saturday, September 24, 10.30am to 4pm  

Tredegar House is one of the architectural wonders of Wales. For more than 500 years it was home to the Morgans, later Lords Tredegar, whose lives influenced the population and heritage of South East Wales.  

Tredegar House is full of opportunities to immerse yourself in history, from the 17th century glistening Gilt Room to 1930s bedrooms. Tredegar also boasts three formal gardens, each with their own stories to tell.  

Dyffryn Gardens, near Cardiff 

Saturday, September 17 and Sunday, September 18, 10am to 6pm. Timed entry tickets available online, booking essential.   

A peaceful oasis on the city outskirts, Dyffryn Gardens represents an ambitious restoration of an Edwardian garden. Visit the tropics in the glasshouse filled with orchids, vines and cacti, and find trees from all over the world in the extensive arboretum. For little explorers, enjoy the fresh air in Dyffryn’s Log Stack natural play area. The majority of the 55-acre garden is wheelchair accessible. 

Plan your Open Doors visit at: www.nationaltrust.org.uk/features/open-doors-in-wales   

The Trust likes everyone to feel welcome and is always working to improve accessibility at the places it cares for, but there is still more to do. Accessibility information is unique to each place; if you’d like further information to plan your visit, please check the website or get in touch ahead of time.