enquiries@tywigateway.org.uk Parc a Gerddi yr Esgob, Abergwili, Sir Caerfyrddin SA31 2JG

Explore the Park

From beautiful formal gardens, to ancient trees, to wildlife rich meadow, to native woodland with scramble ropes and balancing logs, to a SSSi pond – there is so much to explore at Bishop’s Park.  Book on a tour, pick up a map in the Visitor Centre, or follow the interpretation panels around the site- we hope you enjoy your visit!

800 years of horticulture, history and wildlife – the former private gardens of the Bishops of St Davids are now restored for all to enjoy.

Gardd Jenkinson –  Take a moment to admire the beauty and wildlife here.  Inspired by the circular ornamental gardens mapped here in 1843 and now greeting visitors old and new; this new community space is planted with historic and traditional plant species, all varieties available to Bishop Jenkinson’s gardeners back in the 1830s which include Welsh apples and pears such as Tinyrwydd and Bardsey – as well as plants for pollinating insects.

Y Porthdy – Admire the early 19th century gate lodge, built in a rustic style to complement the garden design, built to secure what was then the main entrance to the Palace grounds.

Y Caffi & Learning Centre – enjoy delicious lunches, and afternoons teas, with food produced in the walled garden; explore more of the history of the site, find out about the Bishops that lived in the Palace and the household of servants and gardeners that made it possible.

The Park / Y Parc – Picnic under the Plane trees, hunt for bugs in the wildflower areas and enjoy the views across the Tywi valley; the mature trees and careful management of the main park make it an attractive and place to relax and to socialise.

The Great Meadow / Y Waun Fawr Now open to all, this flood plain meadow formed the parkland setting of the Bishop’s Palace and is now being managed to encourage and protect rare plants and insects. The meadow can be reached (when not flooded) from the formal gardens via a new bridge and ramp enabling wheelchair and pushchair access.

Ha-ha Don’t laugh – it’s actually a long terrace wall and ditch called a Ha-ha which runs between Y Parc and Y Waun Fawr!  By keeping out the grazing animals but not interrupting the view the Ha-ha makes the valley landscape appear part of the garden. The name comes from the noise of surprise made when people realised that the wall and ditch was like an invisible fence – Ah ha! Take care not to get too close!

Woodland Garden  – Wind your way through the woods to the newly created woodland garden, set in a natural bowl with a mature felled beech tree at its heart – perfect for practising your balancing skills! Relax and enjoy the dappled shade and the calls of birds; taking in the views across the ha-ha to the Tywi Valley.

Bishop’s Pond Spot wildlife on the Bishop’s Pond which supports everything from fish and wetland plants to birds and rare animals such as otters. It has protected SSSI status – and a fascinating history too.  The powerful River Tywi flowed on this very spot until 1802 when the river flooded and broke through its banks, and this section of the river became an ox-bow lake!

Walled Garden and Gardeners’ BothyJoin a guided tour of the picturesque walled kitchen garden, which has been brought back into production through the hard work of our volunteers; with its 19th century Gardener’s Bothy used as a fruit store in later years and heritage apple orchard. Along with a wealth of other wildlife the walled garden is home to slow worms and rare meadow ants.