Broadhaven beach in the South of Pembrokeshire
Pembrokeshire in South Wales has some of the UK's most beautiful beaches and the Pembrokeshire National park runs the full length of the coastline, which means stunning coastal walks, rugged coves and soft, sandy beaches!
Walking the Pembrokeshire coastal path between the beautiful beaches is one of the best things to do in Pembrokeshire, but if sandcastles, sunbathing and swimming is more your thing, then you’ll want to check out my recommendations for the top must-visit beaches in Pembrokeshire.
Planning another trip in the UK? Why not check out my post on the top things to see and do in Ilfracombe, North Devon, or Dorset's Jurassic Coast?
The best beaches to visit in Pembrokeshire
1. Barafundle Bay - one the best beaches in the UK
Located in the South of Pembrokeshire, Barafundle Bay is often referred to as one of the UK’s best beaches. The soft sandy beach is only accessible by foot from the car park, which is a 10-20 minute walk from the beach, along the coastal path. There’s no facilities on the beach, but there is the Boathouse Cafe near the car park. Barafundle Bay is also close to Stackpole and Bosherston for the Stackpole Estate and Bosherston Lily Ponds.
2. Broadhaven Beach (Bosherston)
Not to be confused with the beach at Broad Haven town, which is mid-way up the coast of Pembrokeshire, this beach is close to Bosherston Lily ponds in the South of Pembrokeshire. It’s a lovely sandy beach, with shallow waters. If you’re a strong swimmer, you can swim in between the rocks and small coves around the edge of the beach.
There is a car park and facilities at the top of the beach, but you can make it a longer trip by parking at the Bosherston Lily ponds and walking through here to access the beach. From broad haven beach, you can also walk along the coastal path to St Govan’s chapel, which is a lovely little stone chapel built into the cliffs. The path to St. Govan’s chapel is in a military firing zone, so before you visit, check the MOD firing schedule.
This was my favourite beach as it was so quiet and pretty. Combining a walk to Bosherton Lily Ponds and St Govan's Chapel whilst at Broadhaven beach is a great day out and I would highly recommend!
Broad Haven beach (Bosherston)
3. The Blue Lagoon (Abereiddy)
The beach at Abereiddy is small and pebbly, but most people who visit here come for the Blue Lagoon, one of Pembrokeshire's most popular spots along the coast. The Blue Lagoon is a former disused quarry which has now been opened up to allow the sea to flood in. It’s not the prettiest swimming spot compared to other places along the coast, but it’s a popular area for coasteering and cliff diving and is good for families due to the calm, enclosed water.
It does get really busy here in the summer and the car park is small, so arrive earlier in the day to get a sport. You could also combine a visit to the Blue Lagoon with a walk along the coastal path from Porthgain.
The Blue Lagoon at Abereiddy
4. Traeth Llyfn
This hidden gem can only be reached by walking along the coastal path between Abereiddy and Porthgain. The sandy beach is sheltered in a beautiful rugged cove, accessed by steep metal steps. There’s no facilities here, so go prepared if you plan to spend the day there. This untouched beach gives you a taste of how beautiful Pembrokeshire's coastline is. It's definitely worth a visit and the coastal walk between the two spots offers gorgeous views out to sea.
Traeth Llyfn on the Abereiddy to Porthgain coastal path
5. Newgale beach
The beach at Newgale is almost two miles long and when the tide is out, you can relax on soft sand. The sandy beach is backed with a mound of pebbles that act almost as a natural barrier or screen between the beach and the road. When the tide comes in, you can sit on the hill of pebbles and get gorgeous views of the sun setting over the sea.
There are several car parks along the seafront, as well as a campsite, toilets and a cafe.
Tip: If you walk south on the coastal path towards Newgale, you’ll be rewarded with beautiful sweeping views across the bay!
Newgale beach when the tide is in
6. Freshwater West
Apparently, this beach was used as a backdrop for Dobby’s Shell Cottage in the film ‘Harry Potter and the Deathly Shadows’, so if you’re a Harry Potter fan, you may recognise this beach. It’s just 15 minutes drive from the town of Pembroke and is a great sandy beach, popular with surfers due to the strong waves here.
7. Whitesands Bay
Whitesands bay is located near the north of the Pembrokeshire coast, close to the UK's smallest city of St Davids. The wide, sandy beach is a great place to spend the day, with a decent sized car park, toilets and cafe. From Whitesands Bay, you can also follow the coastal path to St David's head - a rocky headland with sweeping views across to Ramsey island and the channel.
8. Tenby's Beaches
Tenby has 3 beaches - North beach, South beach and Castle beach. North beach is located next to the harbour and with the colourful row of houses as a backdrop, it oozes the charm of an iconic British seaside setting. Castle beach is the smallest of the three, with a great view of St. Catherine's Island, but it can get busy here. The largest of Tenby's beaches is South Beach. The sandy beach is a great place to spend the day, especially for families as the waves are calm and even at high tide, there's plenty of beach to enjoy. Afterwards, one of the best things to do in Tenby is to grab an Al fresco drink at Salty's beach bar and restaurant to enjoy the evening sun.
(L) The view over South Beach and (R) North beach looking towards the harbour
There are so many beautiful beaches around Pembrokeshire's stunning coastline and National Coastal Park, and plenty of hidden gems to find, especially if you are kayaking along the coast. I hope this list helped you to plan which beaches to add to your itinerary when visiting Pembrokeshire!
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