It's time to work off the estimated six billion calories you've consumed over the festive period by going for an (admittedly chilly) dip in the sea. Thousands of us take part in Christmas, Boxing Day and New Year charity swims all over Wales.

Porthcawl Christmas Day Swim

This annual splash was dreamt up in 1965 by a couple of members of the local Chamber of Trade. The plan was for one of them (dressed as Coco the Clown) to push his colleague (dressed as Father Christmas) off the pier. The locals enjoyed the spectacle, and now 1,000+ swimmers take part, raising thousands for local charities. Fancy dress is still a popular sartorial option.

When: 25 December, times to be confirmed.
Where: Porthcawl Beach, Bridgend 

Check out the Porthcawl Christmas Day Swim Facebook page for more information.

Tenby Boxing Day Swim

Here's another long-standing swim, which has been running for five decades on Tenby's North Beach (that's the one with the big rock). Around 700 swimmers take part, with thousands of less-hardy souls cheering them on. 

Fun on the beach starts at 11am with a canoe race, crazy raft race and fancy dress parade. The stampede for the sea is signalled at 11.30am, and swimmers can look forward to a beach bonfire, hot soup and a commemorative medal on their return. 

When: 26 December, from 11am
Where: Tenby North Beach, Pembrokeshire, West Wales

Find out more about the Tenby Boxing Day Swim.

Llandudno Lions Club Boxing Day Dip

There are prizes for the first brave female and male to enter the water and also for best fancy dress at this popular annual dip. The water is usually a bracing 9°C, but a bowl of hot soup back at the St George's Hotel should revive the spirits. 

When: 26 December, register by 11am 
Where: St George's Hotel, Llandudno, North Wales

Find out more about the Llandudno Lions Club Boxing Day Dip.

Pembrey Country Park Walrus Dip 

The annual Walrus Dip is held at the vast dune-backed beach at Cefn Sidan. Fancy dress is strongly encouraged, and swimmers should get there in plenty of time – the tide goes out a long way here, so it may be a 10-minute jog to the water's edge. The event once had to be cancelled when the sea froze over, but don't let a piffling detail like that put you off!

When: 26 December, be at the starting line for a 10:45 dip
Where: Cefn Sidan, Carmarthenshire, West Wales

Find out more about the Pembrey Country Park Walrus Dip.

The Mayor's New Year's Day Dip

Newport Boat Club in Pembrokeshire is your host for this chilly dip into the estuary at Parrog (and yes, the mayor really does take part). Mercifully, it's just a short dash back up the slipway for a mug of soup and a hot shower in the Boat Club. 

When: 1 January, noon
Where: Parrog, Pembrokeshire, West Wales

Find out more about The Mayor's New Year's Day Dip. - details TBC.

Image of buildings on the beach, backing onto green hills.

Porthdinllaen beach, Llŷn Peninsula, North Wales

Saundersfoot New Year's Day swim

This massive splash seems to get bigger and more elaborate every year - in 2017 more than 1,800 took part. The crowds were also entertained by the Cold Cup (a fancy-dress horse race over obstacles for local pub teams), fireworks and a mass dance warm-up. Previous year's fancy dress included a team of warriors who arrived on the beach inside a giant wooden Trojan Horse. As for the swim, the rules clearly state: 'Your head must go under! If, however, you are 80+ we'd expect you to go no further than your knees.' So there. 

When: 1 January, 12:00pm
Where: Saundersfoot beach, Pembrokeshire, West Wales

Find out more about the Saundersfoot New Year's Day swim, next event is 2023.

Whitesands New Year's Day Charity Swim

A local charitable organisation, The St Davids Penknife Club, run this annual swim on Whitesands, a favourite local surfing beach on the westernmost tip of Wales. When your teeth stop chattering, you can begin to appreciate the glorious scenery.

When: 1 January, 11am registration, noon swim
Where: Whitesands, Pembrokeshire, West Wales

Find out more about the Whitesands New Year's Day Charity Swim.

beach with water on sand and hill.

The breathtakingly beautifully Whitesands beach, Pembrokeshire

RNLI Porthdinllaen New Year's Day Dip

Of all our seasonal swims, this one may well scoop the 'prettiest location' prize. It's held on the beach at stunning peninsular Porthdinllaen, where the local boozer, the Ty Coch, is often hailed as one of the world's best beach bars.

When: 1 January 2023, 11.30pm
Where: Morfa Nefyn, Llŷn Peninsula, North Wales

Find out more about the RNLI Porthdinllaen New Year's Day Dip on their Facebook page, details TBC.

Abersoch RNLI New Year's Day Dip

There's usually a fancy dress theme at the Abersoch New Year's Day dip. Whatever the costume, all swimmers will be dashing across Abersoch's main beach.

When: 1 January 2023, 11.30 am. All people taking part must be registered.
Where: Abersoch, Llŷn Peninsula, North Wales

Find out more about the Abersoch RNLI New Year's Day Dip.

Boats on sandy beach.
Sea at dusk, with small island and birds.

Fishing boats at Abersoch, North Wales

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