Situated on the edge of the River Glaslyn, the seaside village of Borth y Gest lies just over a mile south of Porthmadog. The village retains much of its Victorian charm with its neat rows of Victorian houses leading down to the sheltered sandy bay, featuring a horseshoe shaped promenade of brightly coloured houses.
The village is dominated by its harbour, where a number of boats are moored during the summer. In years past it was the departure point of one of the major crossings over the Glaslyn estuary and was a busy shipbuilding centre for a short time.
On a clear day, the views over the estuary to the Rhinog Mountains to the south, and the Moelwyn Mountains to the east are stunning, especially in the spring when there can still be snow on the summits.
Situated on the hillside above Borth y Gest is Parc y Borth Nature Reserve. Roughly 15 hectares in size, it features both oak woodland and wildflower meadows. Great Spotted Woodpeckers, Tawny owls and Pied Flycatchers (summer visitor) can be seen here.
The reserve has a network of paths leading to the top of the hill, with views across the Glaslyn and Dwyryd estuaries and also round south to west past Harlech and Criccieth castles, and to the Llŷn Peninsula beyond.
Lying on the shore of the Glaslyn estuary to the south-east of Borth y Gest is Pen y Banc, another local reserve containing a mixture of coastal rocks, secluded sandy coves and mixed woodland. This is a good spot for bird watching in the estuary, with species such as the Curlew, Redshank and Black-Necked Grebe present during the winter, and large flocks of Sandwich Terns with the occasional Common Tern amongst them can be seen in summer. The mild coastal climate encourages heath species such as gorse and heather through to blackthorn, crab apple and birch further away from the coast.
Amenities in the village include a shop, tearoom, petrol station and bistro restaurant, all overlooking the harbour. Ample parking is available within the village including a car park on Mersey Street in the village centre.