An 'Italian' village in north Wales?

The architecture certainly suggests just about any town or village on the Italian Riviera. There are similar colours; bold and brash in some places; a pleasing pastel in others. There’s even an Italian-style bell tower.

But,there’s something other-worldly about the place, too; it’s almost as if, having paid your entrance fee at the gate, you stepped into a sort of alternate reality. You can, in fact, enter that alternate reality in nearby Porthmadog. The quaint little narrow-gauge Ffestiniog Railway will convey you over the embankment across the estuary of the Glaslyn River to Minffordd station, from where it’s a walk of about 1½ miles to the village entrance. The train might even be hauled by one of the railway’s famous ‘double-ended’ Fairlie steam locomotives.

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  • I stayed in the castlized mansion at the entrance. They were just opening it to guests. I stayed there by myself. Didn't get much sleep. A creepy old building like that had lots of sounds. I finally gave up trusting the lock and put an chair against the door.

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