Beaches of Carmarthenshire
There’s a lot more to Carmarthenshire than just its gorgeous green countryside, we have some of the most glorious sandy beaches in Europe.
Cefn Sidan, Pembrey
This storm beach is great for fishing and walking. Look out for jellyfish washed up at high water mark and as not all species sting, the most common one, moon jellyfish, trap plankton within its mucus while pulsing itself through the water. If too windy, head inland to explore Pembrey Country Park and forest, the whole area open to public access, to come across World War Two era gun emplacements and Royal Ordnance structures that are now classed as historical buildings.
A beach of two halves. Look west and you will find dramatic cliffs with a wealth of rock pools and wild cliff top paths (interestingly this area was used, during world War II, for practising the 'D-Day' landings!). To the east, one of Wales’ longest sandy beaches, home to historic land speed records and a part time MOD firing range, stretches into the distance. At the far end of this expanse, huge cockle beds are harvested all year round, reflecting the pure nature of the Carmarthen Bay waters.
Immortalised with the words "..sloe black, slow, black, crow black fishing boat-bobbing sea..", one of Dylan Thomas’ inspirational places needs no introduction. On the edge of the River Taf estuary, his writing shed is open to the public (dylanthomasboathouse.com) and also boasts a castle and various fine eating and drinking places - including various pubs once frequented by Thomas. There are plenty of healthier steep wooded walks overlooking the river and out to sea.
Llansteffan Beach & Scotts Bay
Another of Wales’ famous castles, the 12th century Norman built stronghold is obviously not so strong today but is still known for its monumental Great Gatehouse and with views over the confluence of the Rivers Tywi and Taf that are as dramatic as ever. The village was once a fashionable holiday destination for Victorian and Edwardian folk from the towns and why not venture down the steep slope from the castle, step over crunchy spent cockle shells and onto the secluded sandy beach of Scott’s Bay.
At the mouth of the River Tywi, tucked away off the beaten track but with its own railway station (London to Fishguard route) and home to the River Towy Yatch Club, Ferryside rewards the visitor with a pleasant non touristy spot with great views of Llansteffan castle across the estuary. The narrow sandy beach with its embryonic dunes, once at the heart of the Carmarthen Bay cockle picking industry, is a joy for those wishing to just step off the train and head for the shoreline.
Millennium Coastal Park, Llanelli
In just over 10 years, the 22 kilometres of coastline along the Loughor estuary has been transformed into a unique array of tourist attractions, wildlife habitats and leisure facilities. The Coastal Park is blessed with several stretches of golden shoreline including Machynys, Llanelli Beach and Burry Port Sands (which actually has a choice of two beaches - one either side of the harbour!). Situated in the heart of the Coastal Park, is the newest marina in Wales with a 450 berth facility. Burry Port Marina offers boat owners the perfect mix of leisure facilities. MORE...