• Anthony Oldfield

Amazing mini replicas of famous Italian buildings found hidden in Welsh woodland!

A mini Italian village in North Wales, like Portmeirion!
Image: Ian Lilley

Wales already pays homage to Italy with its famous tourist village, Portmeirion, that's renowned for recreating the atmosphere of the Mediterranean.

But now an abandoned 'mini Portmeirion' has come to light in the heart of nearby Gwynedd woodland.

Mostly hidden from public view, it's now crumbling and slowly being reclaimed by nature - but plans are in place to turn its fortunes around.

Lovingly built over decades by a former chicken farmer, as a nostalgic shrine to a lifetime of Italian holidays, the place is little known but has been labelled a “national treasure”.

A trust has been set up to conserve and maintain the complex of scale buildings, which are believed to be less than a decade away from being lost forever.

Among the Italian landmarks arrayed across the terraced hillside garden near Corris, between Dolgellau and Machynlleth, is an ivy-covered Leaning Tower of Pisa.

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