The City of St Davids

The smallest city in Wales, St Davids is home to some 200 listed buildings. David, the patron saint of Wales established his community alongside the River Alun in the 6th century. There is no shortage of atmospheric pubs and eateries in St Davids and its neighbouring villages. The route includes paved and natural footpaths, quiet lanes, and bridleways and minor road walking. This is a stile-free route, so ideal for visitors with pushchairs and wheelchairs. 

View a Google map of the walk

view of countryside looking towards cathedral, city and coast in background.
Street square with people seated.

St Davids, Pembrokeshire, West Wales

St Davids Cathedral

Work on St Davids Cathedral started in 1180 on the site of an earlier monastic church. St David’s place of birth and the cathedral became one of the most important shrines of medieval Christendom, when two pilgrimages to St. Davids was equal to one to Rome. The Bishop’s Palace next door was built in the 14th century.

looking towards St Davids Cathedral from pathway.
Interior of cathedral, with decorative ceiling.
interior of ruined medieval palace.

St Davids Cathedral and Bishop's Palace, Pembrokeshire, West Wales

St Davids Cathedral

St Davids Cathedral

St Davids
Aerial view of a harbour, two beaches and pastel coloured houses.

St Non's Well and Chapel

St Non’s chapel is traditionally held to mark the place where St Non gave birth to St David. An early excavation found 'stone coffins' which might have been graves of the early Christian period with the pillar-stone dating back roughly to the 7th to 9th century. The water from St Non’s Well was thought to have healing properties. Whether or not you hold with this belief, being surrounded by landscape and seascape like this can only be good for body and mind.

steps  leading to old well.
ruined chapel with coast in background.

St Non's Well and Chapel, Pembrokeshire, West Wales


Porthclais, a lovely sheltered harbour, was once the cargo port for St Davids. Its wall, restored by the National Trust, may date from the 12th or 13th Century. The harbour is now used by fishing and leisure boats and it is a good starting point for cliff walks to St Non's Bay, Solva and Ramsey Sound. Look out for the renovated lime kilns and old quay. 

boats in harbour.
several people kayaking, with cliff face in background.

Boats in Porthclais Harbour, St Davids, Pembrokeshire, West Wales

Pembrokeshire Coast Path

If these routes have whetted your appetite for the Welsh coast, why not follow the Pembrokeshire Coast Path National Trail (part of the Wales Coast Path) beyond the harbour? 

There's a regular coastal bus service, so you can leave the car behind to walk sections of the path.

Wherever you go, take care and remember to keep an eye on the kids and your dog as cliff falls sometimes happen. Please remember to respect our glorious countryside and other people, and follow the Countryside CodeAdventure Smart UK has plenty of advice on how to ‘make a good day better’ for your outdoor activities, and we recommend you read it before planning your days out.

Lady and a dog walking alongside an old building,
Stained glass window in St Davids Cathedral.
Image of a small harbour with small boats.

St Davids and Porthclais harbour, Pembrokeshire, West Wales

Related stories