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  • St.Mary's - North Wales - 26732 - photo 1

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Tal y Llyn near Dolgellau, North Wales & Snowdonia (Ref. 26732)


Very good

Sykes rating

  • Sleeps 4

  • Bedrooms 2

  • Bathrooms 1

  • Pets Yes

  • Show on map


  • Off road parking
  • Ground floor accommodation
  • Ground floor bedroom
  • Garden / Patio
  • Broadband / WiFi

Reviews & Ratings

Accuracy of the listing

33 Customer Reviews

  • "We had an amazing week at St Mary's in the beginning of May, huge thanks to Pete the property owner who was really welcoming, and stayed after 5 to let us in as we were running a bit late."

    He gave us a really great run-down of the property and told us where everything was, showed us how to use the composting toilet (which was really easy to use and totally hygienic, so don't be put off!) St Mary's is such an amazing church, full of history and preserved brilliantly, I loved wandering around looking at the old photographs, reading about Jenny Jones, the history and reference books are a really nice addition. It's such a unique property, every day we kept saying we couldn't believe we were staying there! Honestly you could just spend a whole week in the beautiful church and around Tal Y Llyn and you'd have plenty to occupy yourselves with, it's absolutely stunning. We found out about Corris mine in one of the books and booked a 3 hour deep mine tour which was fascinating - really recommend that, it was a real adventure underground, like a different world! And then Cader İdris is also on your doorstep and it's totally worth the climb, such amazing views! We'd also recommend Dolgoch Falls, Brygn Eglwys (overground mine workings and a lovely walk with cave & waterfall) Aberdyfi and Tywyn for beaches. We crammed a lot into a week's visit but felt like there was much more to see, we hope to be back!

    Ah great review... Thank you so much for taking the time to give us an idea of your holiday.. So pleased you appreciated St. Mary's... and our beautiful area. Pete Property Owner

    Reviewed by BohemiaApr 2022

  • "Peter the owner made us feel welcome on arrival,and shows us around St Marys."

    The Accommodation was excellent,we had great holiday.

    Thank you John for this kind review.. So glad you enjoyed yourselves. Pete Property Owner

    Reviewed by JohnApr 2022

  • "Had a wonderful stay at St."

    Mary's. the owner was very pleasant and helpful when we arrived. The church is stunning with plenty of history to read up on. location is perfect, with a picturesque leisurely walk around the beautiful lake right on the doorstep. the hotel serving food and drink is a five minute stroll away. the town of Dolgellau is a short drive away and well worth a visit. I would avoid Tywyn, not a lot there, if you want to the seaside go to either Barmouth or Aberystwyth, much nicer. all in all I would thoroughly recommend, and we will return.

    Thank you Rob... It was a pleasure to welcome you both and so pleased you enjoyed your stay at St Mary's... Property Owner

    Reviewed by RobMar 2022

  • "Quirky place to stay an amazing location to explore snowdonia highly recommended"

    Reviewed by SeanDec 2021

  • "We had a lovely stay at St Marys and the owner was very nice, he met us to show us around the place and the quirkily elements."

    The toilet is the obvious one but I promise this is really not an issue at all. The place is lovely however we felt it was a little tired in places so could do with a bit of refresh in the main living area. Some the cooking pots and pans and crockery etc could do with replacing. The location is perfect and it is so peaceful, a really super place to unwind and relax. Throughly enjoyed our stay there with plenty of hours spent playing pool and darts in the main part of the church.

    Reviewed by BeckyOct 2021

  • "What a privilege to stay in such a stunningly beautiful property in an idyllic part of Wales!"

    Centuries of history, stained glass windows (look out for the Welsh dragon on the pub sign), gravestones, mist-shrouded mountains with pool, darts and vinyls (great classical selection provided but bring your own non-classical - the Vaccines worked well for us!) to boot - not to mention fairy lights around the altar - what's not to like! OK there's some discussion about the separating toilet - it works fine and is standard in Sweden - embrace the new with the old. Sometimes it was a bit chilly in the main church area but it is a big space and hard to heat - a small price to pay in my opinion. Some tips - put "St Mary's Catholic Church Tywyn" into Google maps and it will get you to the exact spot (avoid using postcode or St Mary's Tal-y-Llyn on Anglesey!) - visibility when exiting from the property in a car is very restricted - there is a mirror over the road which we only realised was there after several days which makes life a lot easier - you can walk to Tyn-y-Cornel for a drink and amazing views from their picnic benches - although they were fully booked for evening meals - the Cross Foxes is further but was very nice - there are lovely independent cinemas at Tywyn (The Magic Lantern) and Borth (Libanus 1877 - with restaurant which was excellent). Enjoy!

    Reviewed by DavidSep 2021

  • "Pete the owner met us at the property all told us the history of the property."

    Really nice man. Accommodation went far beyond expectations. Fantastic holiday!

    Reviewed by YvonneJul 2021

  • "It was a pleasure to stay in such a beautiful church so lovingly restored."

    It was so peaceful and relaxing. The scenery was outstanding and there was so much to see and do.

    Reviewed by JulieJun 2021

  • "A very warm welcome from peter."

    We had a brilliant holiday at st Mary’s the location is second to one highly recommended

    Reviewed by TimJun 2021

  • "St Mary's is a truly unique place to stay."

    It has charm and character in abundance. The location is excellent especially if you are taking a four legged friend along. Our dog really enjoyed the close proximity to the lake! The owner very kindly met us at the church to show us how to manage the finer details and was very accommodating of our needs.

    Reviewed by ElizabethSep 2020

  • "Another amazing holiday, this time in St Mary's Church in Wales."

    Set in a stunning location this is a must for anyone who likes the great outdoors and a stunningly interesting home, steeped in history. The owner Peter was there to greet us and give us some of the local information.

    Reviewed by DaveAug 2020

  • "A lovely place to stay, well managed and steeped in history."

    Peter was so friendly and made us both feel at home right away, he has thought of everything to make it a home from home .

    Reviewed by SimonAug 2020

  • "We had a fantastic holiday staying at St Mary's church and would highly recommend a stay here."

    Surrounded by mountains, with a lake on its doorstep, the peaceful and relaxing location of St Mary's is breathtaking! The church has been beautifully restored maintaining many original features, whilst providing comfortable living areas. My 10 year old son was overjoyed to find a pool table located in the chapel - this kept us all entertained on the one rainy day we experienced. Cadair Idris is only a short distance away and is a hike not to be missed! Also a great base for travelling further afield, we visited Anglesey, Barmouth, Portmeirion and New Quay for a fishing trip. Peter the owner is very welcoming and quickly responded to any queries we had. Towards the end of our stay the kitchen sink started draining slowly; we informed Peter who came round the following day to rectify the issue.

    Reviewed by DebraJul 2020

  • "An experience not to miss."

    Very query, well converted keeping historical features. Scenery beautiful.

    Reviewed by HilarySep 2019

  • "Amazing to stay in this beautiful old church - it is such an interesting building, sensitively updated to provide comfortable accommodation."

    We took an inflatable bed for one of our 2 adult children - plenty of space for it in the upstairs galleried bedroom. The pool table provided hours of entertainment! We would certainly recommend staying here.

    Reviewed by JudeAug 2019

  • "St.Mary’s is an amazing place to stay."

    A partly-converted church sees many of its original features still in place. The toilet is an experience, but don’t let that put you off! If sitting in the sun drinking a beer surrounded by gravestones is your idea of fun, then St.Mary’s is for you. This was our second visit and it won’t be our last. Great place.

    Reviewed by StephenJul 2019

  • "A beautiful old building tastefully restored in a stunning location."

    Perfect base to explore surrounding areas and very peaceful. Only word of warning I'll say is the second bedroom upstairs may be a bit cold in the winter months as it's part of the main chapel, the main bedroom is in an air conditioned 'pod' and absolutely fine. The living room/ kitchen area in the Vestry was spot on and cosy on a stormy evening with a DVD on. For that break with a difference it was perfect. Thank you Peter. We will return. PS Don't be put off by the eco toilet comments, it's absolutely fine. If you've used a caravan then you'll know the script.

    Reviewed by PeterApr 2019

  • "We had an Amazing stay at St Marys Tal y Llyn near Dolgellau."

    To be able to stay at a 15th century church over looking a lake & mountains & the local sheep greeting us in the morning was excellent. The property had everything you need for a excellent stay & more with all the details & the stained windows & too much more to mention. It was very cosy at night in the living area & we are missing it already. If its a drive or walk you are after then you are in for a treat & if its a beach day out you are after give Barmouth a try with cafes & pubs along the front all dog friendly. Peter the owner is a great guy & nothing is too much trouble.

    Reviewed by DamonFeb 2019

  • "Sadly..."

    .The kitchen was dirty on our arrival, crumbs on worktops & floor..toaster full inside and underneath, mould inside the microwave on rotary plate,dirty oven,very dirty & greasy sink, splash back & bowl. All the utensils were dubious & this caused us to have to eat out instead of self catering, hence adding extra costs to our stay. We had to hoover around the living quarters on arrival & half filled the vac! The accommodation lounge furniture was old & dirty between seat pads, cushions again flat & tired...the room was at times uncomfortable, due to heating not suitable to reach acceptable level... even with the extra heaters. The mezzanine bedroom was FREEZING...despite a convector fire & heater supplied. We tried the Pod bedroom but the bed was far too uncomfortable. The bed covers & pillows were tired, washed out & flat and not of a standard that we would expect when paying the price we paid for this property. The upstairs bed and the duvet inside the bedding were in contrast of good quality & kept us warm and comfortable as long as we stayed beneath the covers. The Eco Toilet was NOT what we expected! This should be shown in more detail in your listing. Even Peter said that my Husband would struggle due to his height. Very unsatisfactory! All this said...St Mary's is a beautiful building with special features lovingly restored & retained. We would struggle to recommend this particular property for the above reasons.

    Thank you for your feedback. I’m surprised that the kitchen wasn’t up to standard as I take pride in the hygiene of this area, usually receiving good feedback and would certainly have arranged for a reclean if I had known there was an issue during our conversation. I have checked and cleaned the small microwave area mentioned. Spare plump cushions can be found in the wardrobe and the thermostat can be adjusted up/down to 30 degrees - the property also has two gas fires, two storage heaters, two convector heaters and electric heaters. The pod bed has a very thick mattress bought from a specialist bedding company with lots of pillows, double pillow cases and a new winter duvet. Only an Eco toilet can be fitted although I do advertise it as non standard. I will ensure further details are added to the website. Thank you for appreciating the unique restored nuance of this fabulous building. Property Owner

    Reviewed by RussellDec 2018

  • "A stunning experience in a truly beautiful location."

    Weather was typically Welsh for the time of year so decidedly soggy all round. (Last year it it snowed heavily during Chrismas week in the general area. The change this made to the landscape in such an environment was truly amazing. Peter the owner has done a wonderful job of sensitively modifying the vestry and gallery inside the old church. It's well worth a stay just to appreciate the efforts made to retain the old without compromising the facilities provided by the new. Sykes however have not been at their best in regard to providing ACCURATE details of the property and compromised the ability to contact the owner by ending out incorrect details. The wrong and completely redundant e-mail address was provided to enable contact with the owner after being repeatedly advised of the changes made to his contact details months before. I was given the run around when trying to make contact with someome at Sykes who could get the correct details provided AND CHANGED Permanently for the benefit of others.

    Reviewed by RoyDec 2018

  • "Unique place to stay."

    Wonderful location that affords stunning walks and scenery from the doorstep and local surrounds. The area is prone to a fair bit of rain due to being in North Wales but if you can avoid that (we did for 5 of 7 days in early September) then this really is a great value place to stay. Indeed it's a 'no-brainer' booking this via Sykes Cottages relative to the far more expensive Landmark Trust/National Trust type 'quirky' properties.

    Reviewed by LeeSep 2018

  • "Lovely place to stay."

    Comfortable & not scary. The dog loved exploring the grounds & so did we. So much history.

    Reviewed by JackySep 2018

  • "Stunning property!"

    A little church dating back centuries. An absolute privilege to be able to stay in this beautiful part of Wales amongst the mountains and rivers.

    Reviewed by ColinMay 2018

  • "We had an amazing holiday at St Mary’s."

    The church is really unusual and quirky but it’s been really well designed and is well-equipped with all the comforts of home. Completely unlike anywhere we’ve stayed before - a uniquely interesting and historical building. The owner was extremely helpful, friendly and welcoming. We’ll definitely be returning!

    Reviewed by SarahApr 2018

  • "Saint Mary's was absolutely fantastic , the perfect get away from it all break."

    I highly recommend this property

    Reviewed by DeborahSep 2017

  • "Great location and a wonderful place to stay."

    Reviewed by KenAug 2017

  • "The cottage is absolutely gorgeous."

    The surroundings are quiet and serene. Perfect for a relaxing week in the countryside.

    Reviewed by TimAug 2017

  • "Beautiful location, lovely and remarkable cottage."

    The only thing we missed a little, was a clear window. It would be nice to experience more daylight inside. But we respect the reason, as the old Church must remain intact.

    Reviewed by DingenaJul 2017

  • "The pictures and words do not sum up how superb this actually is"

    Reviewed by JulietJun 2017

  • "Beautiful location gentle stroll around the lake, chapel has been lovingly ..."

    Beautiful location gentle stroll around the lake, chapel has been lovingly looked after, definitely a holiday with a difference, very peaceful and quiet but with easy traveling to nearest town and walks near by

    Reviewed by LesleyApr 2017

  • "Truly unique accommodation, such a beautiful conversion retaining so many of the original features."

    Thank you to Peter for allowing us to stay in this special place.

    Reviewed by SamanthaApr 2017

  • "A very unique experience."

    ..fantastic history and the conversion has been very well thought out. Owner very friendly and helpful.

    Reviewed by JosephineMar 2017

  • "This is a very unusual holiday property."

    On arrival we were met by Peter who was just finishing off mowing the grass in the church yard. He was extremely welcoming and very proud to show us around this beautifully preserved church. You are staying in a former church which has been tastefully converted into a beautiful holiday cottage but still retains the original church interior including beautiful stained glass windows, church pews, font and a working church organ. The answer to the first question we were asked on our return " No the church is no longer in use so you don't have to lead the congregation on Sunday. The main living area is in the vestry and comprises of a small but functional kitchen and a comfortable open living and dining area. The two spacious and comfortable bedrooms both have TV's in them as well as additional seating areas. There is WiFi and a landline telephone which is useful as there is no mobile phone signal. Due to planning constrictions there are no clear glass windows to see out of but just step outside as the landscape is magnificent, there are many seating areas in and around the church ideal for viewing the scenery, the lake and the mountains. The area is remote the nearest well stocked shop is approx. 9 miles away in a small seaside town called Tywyn which also has a small cinema called the Magic Lantern. If you like walking there are many places to go and Peter has provided lots of info on the area and maps to help you find your way. We aren't walkers but the area is perfect for both walkers and cyclists. This was a fantastic break after we had had a busy year and I have to say I came home feeling well relaxed. This is a beautiful property and Peter should be congratulated for all of his hard work in keeping this property alive and allowing people the chance to stay in a unique holiday rental in a truly stunning location.

    Reviewed by AnnAug 2016

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  • Mostly ground floor
  • Church: Two bedrooms: 1 x ground floor double with en-suite shower, basin and eco toilet system ("Separett Torp-Isak” brand in grey granite), 1 x mezzanine double with en-suite basin and his and hers chemical toilet
  • Vestry: Open plan living area with kitchen, dining area and sitting area with gas living flame fire.
  • Electric heating
  • Electric oven and hob, microwave, fridge, freezer, TV with Freeview, DVD, record player, WiFi, telephone on honesty box basis, selection of books, games, DVDs and LPs
  • Fuel and power inc. in rent
  • Bed linen and towels inc. in rent
  • Off road parking for 3 cars
  • Lawned garden with furniture adjacent to property with furniture and graveyard to sides and rear
  • One well-behaved dog welcome
  • Sorry, no smoking
  • Shop 9 miles, pub 2 mins walk
  • Hotel and restaurant 5 mins walk
  • Note: Private water supply from lake which is filtered and regularly checked and approved by the local authorities
  • Note: Please ensure dogs are kept on a lead and are supervised at all times when outside
  • Note: Due to the nature and Grade II* listing of the property there are non-standard eco toilet systems installed
  • ("Separett Torp-Isak” brand in grey granite) Note: Both bedrooms are served by the shower in the ground floor double en-suite
  • Note: Mezzanine bedroom has some restricted headroom and glass balustrades
  • Note: Max 3 adults and 1 child over the age of 8
  • Note: We recommend a maximum capacity of 2 from 1st November - 31st March as the accommodation on the mezzanine can be cold during the winter months due to the age and character of the building.

The property

St Mary’s is a beautiful stone-built, detached 15th century church set amidst some of the most stunning countryside in the foothills of Mount Cader Idris, situated across from the shores of the magnificent and picturesque 222 acre Tal y Llyn Lake.

This ancient and historic Grade II* listed church has been preserved in all its original glory with only part of the church itself having been converted to provide two comfortable bedrooms whilst the attached vestry has been renovated and offers comfortable living accommodation.

You will be in awe of this stunning place from the moment you arrive; St. Mary’s is a hidden treasure and will certainly offer you a holiday with a difference, you will return home with some wonderful lasting memories and stories to tell.

The vestry boasts open plan living accommodation with high ceilings and exposed beams and timbers, the comfy sitting area has a warm and homely ambiance with a gas living flame fire for you to sit and relax in front of after a busy day out and about.

A well-equipped kitchen area caters for all your needs and the dining area is ideal for that leisurely breakfast or late supper.

The two bedrooms are located in the church, go through the connecting heavy oak door and you will be transported back to a bygone era with a sense of peace and calmness.

This beautiful church has an amazing Welsh oak roof structure, preserved and complete with a Tudor painted ceiling and stunning stained glass window at one end.

Many of the original features remain including the pulpit, the pump organ, font and many of the pews.

The ground floor double bedroom is a real marvel, cosy and modern but befitting its surroundings with stairs to the side which access the mezzanine bedroom above with glass balustrades overlooking the church and its pews, here you can really get up close to the beautiful oak roof timbers.

Certain conditions set out by the Snowdonia National Park Authority means that a non-standard eco toilet system had to be installed, not something most people are used to but it’s all compliant with 21st century building regulations and is a small price to pay for this wonderful experience.

St. Mary’s church stands within an historic graveyard with many ancient gravestones but there are plenty of places outside to sit, from which to admire your surroundings.

Sit overlooking the lake watching the swallows fly close by or the wildlife emerging around you.

The sunsets lighting up Graig Goch behind you are unforgettable and with the area unpolluted by light on a clear night you can see the Milky way!

The walk to the summit of Cader Idris begins on your doorstep, and four miles down the road is the Tal y Llyn Railway which steams down the valley to Tywyn.

Discover the Mawddach Estuary which John Ruskin said provided "one of the most sublime views in Europe”, the huge beach at Barmouth provides a great day out and the quaint market town of Dolgellau with its interesting shops, pubs and restaurants is only 11 miles away.

St. Mary’s is a perfect peaceful retreat and offers a unique holiday experience anytime of the year, one you’ll want to return to and relive time and time again.

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About the location


Dolgellau 9 miles; Towyn 10 miles.

The tiny hamlet of Tal y Llyn quietly nestles amidst the peaceful foothills of the Cader Idris mountain range, close to the lovely shores of Tal y Llyn Lake. A paradise for outdoor enthusiasts, the surrounding area is home to Mount Cader Idris, Wales' second most climbed peak at 2928 feet, and abounds in numerous climbing, walking and cycling opportunities, as well as boasting excellent fishing and being part of the Tal y Llyn narrow gauge railway. The historic town of Dolgellau and the renowned seaside resort of Towyn are both close by, offering a variety of good shops, pubs and restaurants, whilst the enormous blue flag sandy beach at Barmouth is also within easy reach. Enjoy boat trips, the coastal railway and magnificent scenery in every direction, or explore further afield to discover all the delights North Wales has to offer.

View more holiday cottages in Tal Y Llyn

Region Information

Note: Max 3 adults and 1 child over the age of 8.

This property offers the following short breaks:

  • Winter
  • Off-season
  • Last minute
  • Christmas