A family weekend away warms the soul. This is where treasured memories are forged; along forest trails, on the sands of deserted beaches and gathered around cosy log fires, beneath dark skies that stretch on forever overhead.

Wonderful woodlands, breath-taking beaches and stunning star-filled skies

Start the day exploring the ancient woodland surrounding Lawrenny and the Cleddau Estuary before heading to Freshwater West for an unique coastal culinary foraging session. When night falls, admire the amazing dark skies of Wales from the comfort of your own cosy glamping retreat.

Connect with nature in Pembrokeshire’s ancient woodland

Begin your adventure wandering Pembrokeshire’s wildernesses. The tranquil Cleddau Woodlands sit beside expansive salt marsh and heritage-rich tidal creeks, making this a varied yet peaceful area to explore. Look closely and you’ll find that there are many surprises to be discovered amongst the foliage, from waders and wildfowl to the mighty ancient oak.

Man and young boy foraging with a basket and picking leaves on the banks of the Cleddau estuary Lawrenny.

Guided foraging with Garry Thomas in the woods at Little Retreat, Lawrenny, Pembrokeshire

On the Little Retreat estate, also home to the celebrated Big Retreat Festival, Garry Thomas helps families create deep new connections with the natural world as they learn the secrets of the unique plants and flowers that dwell beside the banks of the Cleddau Estuary.

Learn more about Lawrenny and Pembrokeshire's hidden waterway, the Cleddau River and Daugleddau estuary.

Wander the banks of the Cleddau River

Pembrokeshire may be famed for its beaches, but the banks of the Cleddau Estuary hold their own unique pull, rich in Welsh history and tradition. Here amongst the chirping birds and secret waterways you’ll find Carew Castle, an architectural marvel in its own right that also sits beside Wales’ only restored tidal mill. Here you can see the original machinery as well as enjoying family-friendly exhibitions exploring how water has been used as a sustainable source of energy through the ages.

Wales just might be the castle capital of the world, so there are plenty more wonderful castles to explore all across Wales.

Three adults and a young boy, walking through a field in Lawrenny, overlooking the Cleddau Estuary.
Man and boy looking at Carew castle with Cleddau estuary in foreground. The man is pointing at the castle.

Carew Castle overlooking the Cleddau Estuary, Lawrenny, Pembrokeshire

A bracing afternoon beach adventure

Few sights can match the rugged beauty of Wales’ coastline. Thanks to a certain Harry Potter, Pembrokeshire’s Freshwater West has become one of Wales’ most popular beaches. Visit on an afternoon outside the peak summer season, however, and you’ll find this to be the perfect venue for a bracing coastal stroll with vast stretches of sand all to yourselves.

Here you'll meet expert coastal foragers, like Matt Powell, who left a Michelin-starred kitchen to establish his own Pembrokeshire-based foraging activity and fine-dining experience. It's the perfect location to learn how to pick clams, cockles, and edible samphire from amongst the coves and rock pools. Better yet, you can finish off by enjoying a lip-smackingly fresh coastal lunch, right there on the beach.

Two parents and a young boy with a foraging guide collecting seaweed from rockpool. The boy is smelling and touching the seaweed.
Close up shot of forager Gary Thomas holding basket in one hand and foraged seaweed in the other hand, standing in the sea.
Foraged sea food including seawood and lobster being cooked on a bbq.

Foraged sea food including seawood and lobster, cooked on Freshwater West beach, Pembrokeshire

To make sure you have the best experience always go with an expert guide who’ll know just what should and shouldn’t be foraged.

Learn more about our top guided foraging experiences in Wales, or enjoy more inspiration for unique coastal dining experiences in Wales.

Dark sky discovery to end the day

Wales is one of the UK’s best dark sky destinations, where families are invited to cwtsh together around crackling fires and gaze up at the majesty of the solar system.

Throughout Wales you’ll find many unusual places to stay, including Lawrenny’s Dragonfly Camping, where you can admire the stars from the comfort of your own yurt, cabin or shepherd’s hut.

Dad and son sitting by campfire with the sun setting behind them,
Dad and son stargazing at night. Dad is holding up mobile phone to view a stargazing app with son looking up to sky with a campfire and telescope in the background.

Star-gazing by the fire at Dragonfly glamping and camping Lawrenny, Pembrokeshire

If you fancy spending a night or two beneath the stars, check out some of Wales’ other glamping holiday options, discover Wales’ amazing dark sky destinations or read our tips for photographing the night sky.

Visit Wales Newsletter

This is Wales. A country with a warm heart, a rich history and an exciting future. Subscribe to our newsletter to hear our latest stories, holiday or short break ideas and more about interesting events taking place in Wales.

Related stories