Try Wales for the perfect beach trip

The Wales Coast Path is the longest continuous coastal path in the world. Along its length there are hundreds of harbours, coves, inlets – and, of course, beaches. But which one will be your favourite? 

  • Beach huts and boats on Abersoch beach

    Abersoch beach, Llŷn Peninsula, Snowdonia

    There’s always a lively family feel to Abersoch, one of our best watersports centres. It’s at its most vibrant during the August Regatta which, apart from all the serious sailing stuff, features raft-racing, crab-catching and sandcastle-building contests.

  • Barafundle Bay and beach near Stackpole Quay in Pembrokeshire
    Barafundle Bay, Pembrokeshire

    It’s impossible to pick our prettiest beach, but this Pembrokeshire gem, backed by dunes and pine trees, always crops up. There’s something almost Caribbean about Barafundle, which is all the better for being a half-mile (0.8 km) walk from the nearest car park.

  • Aerial view of Barmouth and the Mawdach Estury

    Barmouth and the Mawdach Estury, Snowdonia

    Huge and picturesque, Barmouth beach is always popular but never overcrowded. Barmouth itself is a proper British seaside resort, complete with trampolines, ice creams, arcade games, donkey rides and a vintage railway.

  • Benllech beach on the Isle of Anglesey
    Benllech beach, Anglesey

    This small holiday town is set on a crescent-shaped bay, with a fine beach that stretches for miles. It’s also blissfully easy to get to, even for pushchairs and wheelchairs.

  • Llangrannog, Ceredigion

    Mother and father walking along Llangrannog beach, Ceredigion
    Llangrannog beach, Ceredigion

    There’s nothing flashy about the village – it’s just a cluster of houses wedged between two headlands, with a great beach and waves lapping at their toes. The coastal footpath leads you through clouds of wild flowers that are alive with butterflies in summer.

  • Cefn Sidan, Pembrey

    Cefn Sidan, Pembrey, Carmarthenshire

    This whopping eight-mile (12 km) beach has plenty of room for everyone, and young nature detectives can climb the dunes to track down grasshoppers and other mini beasts. It’s all part of Pembrey Country Park, which has play areas and an equestrian centre, dry ski slope and toboggan run.

  • Porth Dinllaen beach and the Ty Coch Inn beach bar on the Llyn Peninsula
    Porth Dinllaen beach, Llyn Peninsula

    Only locals are allowed to drive to this perfect little harbour hamlet. But never mind – it’s a lovely short walk along the beach, or through Nefyn’s famously beautiful golf course, to reach it. It’s an idyllic cove and natural harbour, with the added bonus of a cracking pub, the Tŷ Coch Inn, which has just been voted one of the world’s best beach bars.

  • Couple relaxing on clifftop above Rhossili beach, Gower Peninsula
    Rhossili Beach, Gower

    Well, we had to mention our cover star, didn’t we? Rhossili’s three-mile (4.8 km) golden sands come with a genuine shipwreck, and if you time the tides right, there’s a fabulous walk out to the promontory known as Worm’s Head.

  • Traeth Mawr in Southerndown, Glamorgan Heritage Coast
    Traeth Mawr, Southerndown, Glamorgan Heritage Coast

    The Glamorgan Heritage Coast’s multi-layered cliffs occasionally drop down into sandy bays. Southerndown is a favourite with surfers and families, and there’s a great clifftop walk to the ruins of Dunraven Castle.

  • Tenby's North Beach and Harbour at low tide, Pembrokeshire
    North Beach, Tenby in Pembrokeshire

    We’re cheating a bit here, since there’s not one fantastic beach in Tenby, but three blue flag ones. The Rough Guide to Wales describes this pretty little town as ‘everything a seaside resort should be’ and it was recently voted one of the UK’s top five beach destinations by Tripadvisor.

This article is featured in Wales View 2014, download a pdf version or request a free postal copy