Frankie goes to the Bodnant Estate, Colwyn Bay

Updated in April 2024: Nestled in the hills on the Bodnant Estate in Colwyn Bay, North Wales, Ty Ucha’r Ffordd is a cosy stone cottage with fabulous views across to Snowdonia. If you’re looking for a tranquil, rural retreat for you and your dog, this is the perfect place. Along with compact but comfortable accommodation, you also have access to the miles of private woodland paths winding through the Estate.

Image of Ty Uchar Ffordd cottage on the Bodnant Estate
Ty Uchar Ffordd cottage with plenty of private parking on the left

The Paw Award

Everyone knows we dogs normally have four paws, so to get a five paw award is super special. Four is an extremely positive Frankie recommendation, any less and it’s just a question of personal choice.

Friendly & welcoming atmosphere

From the moment we arrived and unlocked the front door (accessed through a key lock code), we felt at home. The cottage is certainly compact and bijou, but it’s so cosy and well laid out with everything you need. It’s clean and tidy, but ‘lived in’ which meant it was easy to relax and the dogs settled immediately.

This was our third stay in the cottage, 2021, 2022 and our latest visit, April 2024.

On the two previous occasions, there was a generous welcome hamper on the table when we arrived, full of Bodnant Estate quality goodies and we also received 10% off food produce at the shop and plants from the garden centre.

The original hamper in previous years supplied by the Bodnant Estate farm shop.
The original Bodnant Estate goodies – there were also delicious free range eggs

However, on our latest visit, we were disappointed to find the hamper had been markedly downgraded to what appeared to be items bought at the local supermarket. Bizarrely there was tea and coffee, but no milk! Gone was the delicious granola, orange juice, wine, cheese, fruit, bread and even butter.

New welcome pack showing what's included.

Logs were also limited this time to one – albeit generous – basket; there were instructions as to where to buy more if needed. However, the central heating is excellent so toasty without lighting the stove.

Helpful staff

We originally booked the cottage through Rural Retreats for February 2021, but then Covid closed down the country; the company Managing Director promptly emailed to offer us a voucher, rebook or a full refund. All email communication with the friendly Rural Retreats team was dealt with efficiently and the whole process was easy. This time we booked directly via the estate owners, Michael and Caroline McLaren’s website. The service was impersonal and automated; we were also sent an email asking for ‘bed configurations’, when there is only one bed! This isn’t really an issue of course, but communication and staff care can make such a difference to your holiday.

Freya and Frankie cockapoos relaxing in their dog beds

Accommodation suitability & cost per dog

It was a squeeze to fit the dog beds in the sitting room, but no more so than if we were in a hotel. There is a charge of £20 per dog for the duration of your stay, and all 10 self catering cottages on the Bodnant Estate are dog friendly.

Image of the bathroom.

The bathroom had been redecorated since our last stay, although the sanitary ware was as before. There is a rainfall shower, and also a shower over the bath with a lovely view of the countryside. The utility room was a real bonus as it meant it was easy to wash dog paws after long walks around the Estate. The facilities include a washing machine with built in tumble dryer, a fridge and a small freezer (housed in the sitting room cupboard) and a dishwasher. Dishwasher tablets were provided but you need to bring your own washing power/liquid.

Utility room

Little extras offered

Image of the doggy hamper.

There were two dog bowls, a dog towel and a doggy hamper containing four large bone biscuits, poo bags and a guide to managing dogs in the countryside.

Image of the view from the bedroom and bathroom window.
The view from the main bedroom and bathroom window

Location and dog walks

The cottage has a large enclosed garden, perfect for early morning doodle dashing and toileting without having to leave the property. There are two private paths after a short walk on the rarely used road from the cottage. Most of the walks are off lead, although there are sheep in one or two of the fields so leads are necessary, and a few pheasants strutting their stuff to watch out for if your dog’s prone to chase birds. There are also numerous walks in the area and Freya and Frankie really enjoyed walks in the Gwydir Forest Park, Betws-y-coed. If you’re visiting beaches, some are closed to dogs from May to September (at nearby Conwy for example), so good to check beforehand.

Image of one of the private gates on the Bodnant Estate

Frankie awarded Ty Ucha’r Ffordd 4 Paws

The 4 Paw award for Ty Ucha'r Ffordd .

If you want to discover more about the cottages available on the Bodnant Estate please visit their website here. However, we do recommend Rural Retreats as a booking agent and we will use them again.

To take a look at other accommodation reviewed by Frankie just click here.