It’s the smallest city in Britain and has been a place of pilgrimage for centuries. Travel writer and St Davids local Alf Alderson takes us on a tour, highlighting his favourite things to see and do in and around this miniature metropolis.

St Davids Cathedral

The 12th century St Davids Cathedral, built on the site of a much older religious buildings, is the reason for little St Davids' outsize city status. Constructed from dusky purple sandstone, it’s one of Wales’ most iconic religious sites and sits tucked away in a sheltered vale beside the River Alun. Here you can learn about the history of St Davids, visit the impressive Treasury collection and enjoy home-cooked and locally-sourced food at The Refectory.

A large cathedral in its green grounds.
Image of a part of the St Davids Cathedral ceiling with ornate detail.
Interior of St Davids Cathedral.

St Davids Cathedral

Oriel y Parc Gallery

Located in the National Park Information Centre, Oriel y Parc Gallery hosts displays from the collections of the National Museum of Wales alongside work by local artists and craftspeople. It’s also home to works by surrealist painter Graham Sutherland. He left a collection of his dramatic and imaginative landscapes to the people of Pembrokeshire, stipulating that the paintings should be seen in the place which had inspired them.

People sitting outside Oriel y Parc Gallery, St Davids.

Oriel y Parc Gallery, St Davids

The Bishop’s Palace

The brooding Gothic ruins of the Bishop's Palace lie on the opposite bank of the river from the cathedral and provide a suitably dramatic backdrop for open air theatre performances in the summer. Bishop Henry de Gower’s legacy consists of the simpler east range, his private domain, and the grander south range, built for banqueting in the great hall.

The interior walls of St Davids Cathedral with the sunlight creating shadows.
Bishop's Palace with St Davids Cathedral in the background.

The Bishop’s Palace, St Davids

Pebbles Yard Gallery and Espresso Bar

This welcoming Pebbles Yard Gallery and Espresso Bar is the ideal spot to grab a bite to eat and take a break from exploring. Catch the sun and people watch in the courtyard with an espresso, then head inside to see works from local wildlife and landscape photographer Jacki Sime. Alongside Sime’s striking images, you’ll find Pembrokeshire’s largest collection of jewellery and a range of changing exhibits from contemporary artists and designers.

Exterior of Pebbles Yard Gallery.

Pebbles Yard Gallery and Espresso Bar, St Davids, Pembrokeshire

Island boat trips

Boat trips to the wild offshore islands of Ramsey, Grassholm, Skomer and Skokholm offer an opportunity to get close to the sea life that call this rugged landscape home. Catch a glimpse of puffins, gannets, porpoises, dolphins and whales and choose a 15-minute island hop or a leisurely cruise depending on how sturdy your sea legs are.

Skomer Island and blue seas seen from Pembrokeshire coast
A puffin coming into land on Skomer Island with a fresh catch of fish

Skomer Island and puffin in flight

Further information

If you're looking for somewhere to stay, in St Davids, there are loads of accommodation options to explore. Choose from contemporary town centre apartments overlooking the cathedral, luxury self-catering cottages overlooking the coast, award-winning hotels and modern youth hostels. 

Search for more things to do in St Davids.

Search for exciting activities for a holiday to remember in St Davids.

Street square with people seated.
Historic buildings by a bridge over a stream.
Ruins of the Bishops' Palace with people on the green in front.

St Davids, Pembrokeshire

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