Destinations UK

The South Wales Coast – Underrated?

Having recently visited the dramatic coastlines and stunning beaches of Mallorca, the Florida Keys and the Pacific Coast Highway, California we were thinking about what we have much closer to home, specifically South and West Wales. We know Pembroke has the Coastal National Park but we think the area from the Vale of Glamorgan all the way down to St David’s still undersells itself.

The tourist industry is gradually getting better and there are improved offerings for the more discerning traveller. No more chintzy B & B’s with owners that are determined to inflict their “character”. Service is also far better although there is still room for improvement, there are only so many bemused waiters you can take in a day.

However what really makes a trip worthwhile is the beautifully dramatic coastline, the rugged cliffs and dunes and some of the best beaches in Europe. Maybe we don’t get the sun of California or Florida but there is something spellbinding about sitting a warm pub watching waves crashing onto the cliffs during a winter’s storm.

Tenby Harbour
Tenby Harbour and North Beach

Our Top Ten Places To Visit on the South Wales Coast

1. Tenby, Pembrokeshire

Picturesque medieval stone walled seaside town with superb beaches.

2. Merthyr Mawr Sand Dunes, near Bridgend

Sequences from the classic film Lawrence of Arabia were filmed here.

3. Laugharne, Carmarthenshire

Little village on the River Tâf Estuary, famous for being the home of Dylan Thomas.

4. Rhossili Bay and Worm’s Head, Gower

Expansive beach and dramatic headland which is far better than the name suggests.

5. Barafundle Bay, near Stackpole, Pembrokeshire

15 mins steep walk to get there, but worth it to get to this secluded beach.

6. Rest Bay, Porthcawl

Learn to surf! Great surfing and kitesurfing beach and only 4 miles off M4.

7. St David’s, Pembrokeshire

St David’s Cathedral and St David’s village, the smallest city in Britain.

8. Pembrey Country Park, Carmarthenshire

Dunes, walking trails and an eight mile beach, lots of outdoor activities for kids.

9. Caswell Bay, Swansea

Pretty little bay on the Gower Peninsula and close to Swansea, popular with local surfers.

10. Welsh Coastal Path

As the name suggests a footpath from South East Wales up to the North. Some of the most breathtaking views are in the section following the Pembrokeshire Coastal Path.
St Catherine's Island Tenby
St Catherine’s Island, Castle Beach, Tenby

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  • Ashleigh
    May 11, 2016 at 3:14 pm

    I’ve never been to Wales but it looks really lovely to visit! 🙂 Great post.

    Ashleigh x

  • Hayley-Eszti
    May 11, 2016 at 3:23 pm

    Looks very beautiful there, whilst I love going abroad, I also love seeing places here in the UK. We have some amazing towns and coastal areas, I’ve never made it to Wales but it is on my list!

    Hayley-Eszti |

    • Mr and Mrs W
      May 11, 2016 at 7:38 pm

      You must try and visit, especially Pembrokeshire – National Geographic voted it one of the best coastlines in the world.

  • Olivia Thristan
    May 12, 2016 at 7:19 pm

    I’ve been to some fabulous places in Wales it’s definitely totally underrated. I love Aberystwyth it’s so lovely 😀

    • Mr and Mrs W
      May 12, 2016 at 8:58 pm

      We hope to travel further up the west coat over the summer from Cardigan up to Aberystwyth and then to Portmeirion and Snowdonia National Park.

  • Hayley
    May 19, 2016 at 11:41 am

    We have some beautiful places in Wales, I don’t think people realise sometimes, there are still so many places I want to see, I loved Rhossili Bay only we went on a cold day last April, still had a hassle though. I love this post, you should come up North and do a post around here 🙂 ♥

  • Leigh Travers
    May 23, 2016 at 10:24 am

    I LOVE Wales, although I haven’t been in years. In fact I haven’t been to any coastal cities there either. You’ve managed to get some gorgeous photos, particularly of Tenby Harbour!

  • Jess
    May 23, 2016 at 12:02 pm

    Oh I do love Wales! I think you’re right, it really does undersell itself. I always feel sad about not taking the time to visit more often when I’m practically a stones throw away in Manchester. I’ve never been to Tenby specifically though, it looks gorgeous!