The best coastal walks in Wales

Coastal, Walking, The Great British Outdoors

Posted by Clare Willcocks on 11th May 2022

Wales Coast Path

A holiday to Wales would not be complete without a glimpse of the stunning and varied coastline. One of the best ways to enjoy beautiful, unspoiled views of the sea is to embark on a walk along the Wales Coast Path as it follows the contours of the country - meandering alongside beautiful beaches, above towering cliffs, through protected landscapes and across open stretches backed by picturesque mountains. Explore the delights of beautiful Cardigan Bay, the impressive scenery of Pembrokeshire and its many seaside towns and villages that beckon hikers, and the rugged coast of Anglesey and North Wales. 

Along many sections of the Wales Coastal Path you’ll be alone, surrounded by unspoilt scenery, fresh sea air and an overwhelming sense of freedom. There are a number of regional trails that form the larger walk, while there are others that diverge from the Welsh coastal paths to head inland over the mountains like the Beacons Way or the Snowdonia Way.

Lighthouse in Wales

The coast path is the perfect way to discover Wales and also gives you access to some of the best beaches in the country; read our guide to find out where they are.

Stay at one of our self-catering holiday cottages in Wales, and fall head over heels in love with the Wales Coast Path. Or for even more walks by the sea, read our guide to Great British coastal walks.

Coastal cottages in Wales

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Long coastal walks in Wales

Kidwelly to Carmarthen - Carmarthenshire

Kidwelly to Carmarthen - Carmarthenshire

If you love long coastal walks, you'll definitely want to try this leg of the Wales Coast Path in West Wales. Get out of bed early and spend the whole day on this delightful yet challenging section, stretching from Kidwelly to Carmarthen - it follows a mixture of tarmac and gravel paths. 

Starting from the pretty castle town of Kidwelly, you’ll descend to Kidwelly Quay where you can drink in the views out to Carmarthen Bay. After passing through Pembrey Forest and Country Park you’ll end up in the incredible Millennium Coastal Park. Carmarthen is well served by public transport so you can get back to Kidwelly with ease.

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Porth Oer to Aberdaron - Llyn Peninsula

Porth Oer to Aberdaron - Llyn Peninsula

Taking you along the westernmost extremity of the Llyn Peninsula, this coastal walk in North Wales is a little strenuous, but definitely worth the effort if you’re up for a little challenge! It begins at Porth Oer, often known as Whistling Sands due to the fact it’s one of the only places in Europe where the sand ‘squeaks’ beneath your feet.

The undulating path takes you uphill and down dale, past a sea cave, above an old harbour and ends on Aberdaron Beach. As you approach Aberdaron you’ll see Bardsey Island, which was once a major medieval centre of pilgrimage.

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Morfa Harlech to Morfa Dyffryn - Snowdonia National Park

Morfa Harlech to Morfa Dyffryn - Snowdonia/Eryri National Park

Walk the 12 miles between these two gorgeous west coast beaches. Begin at Harlech and walk the Wales Coastal Path with the sea on your right past sand dunes and the towering Harlech Castle, high up on the hill. 

Morfa Dyffryn is a wide sandy beach with stunning views of the arching coastline of Tremadog Bay, the Rhinog Mountains, and the peaks of Snowdonia/Eryri in the distance. You can catch the Cambrian Coast Railway home if you don't wish to walk the full length of the trail twice. 

  • Distance: 12 miles 
  • Difficulty: Moderate to strenuous
  • Food and drink: As.Is.Bistro
  • Stay at: Eryl y Mor | sleeps 5 guests + 1 dog

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Medium coastal walks in Wales

Dale, St Ann’s Head and Westdale Bay - Pembrokeshire Coast National Park

Dale, St Ann’s Head and Westdale Bay - Pembrokeshire Coast National Park

A lovely, picturesque coastal walk in Pembrokeshire that weaves around the edge of the peninsula on the Pembrokeshire coast, this route offers beautiful sea views and has the added bonus of bringing you back to your starting point. It makes a great dog walk with some dog-friendly beaches en route to let them have a bit of a runaround.

Westdale Bay is usually quiet thanks to a lack of road access and is a wonderful example of one of Pembrokeshire’s incredible beaches. Marvel at the views at the entrance to Milford Haven and pass Watwick Bay on your way back, another stunning golden cove which is dog-friendly all year round! 

Walking the coast path is just one of many activities that you can enjoy on your break: read our guide to the best activities in Wales for more inspiration.

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Talacre to Presatyn - North Wales

Talacre to Presatyn - North Wales

This beautiful walk is for those that love sunsets, dunes and lighthouses. Talacre is a tiny village on the River Dee Estuary, situated close to its westerly side as it joins the Irish Sea. The walk along the shoreline follows miles of sand dune-fringed beaches and it also presents an opportunity at low tide to walk out to the iconic Point Ayr Lighthouse. 

Buzzing Prestatyn has been a seaside resort for over a hundred years, so after the tranquillity of Talacre, follow the Wales Coast Path until you meet the town's bustling seafront where you'll find lots of places to unwind with a drink or enjoy a meal. 

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Rhossili to Port Eynon - The Gower Peninsula

Rhossili to Port Eynon - The Gower Peninsula

This is one of the most beautiful stretches of the Wales Coast Path, and subsequently, one of the most popular, stretching around the Gower Peninsula. We thoroughly recommend this coastal walk in West Wales. Take in the rugged scenery along the cliff tops from where there are wonderful views towards Rhossili and Worm’s Head - a peninsula which is cut off by the tide. It earned its name due to its sea serpent-like appearance, known as a ‘wurm’ by Viking invaders. 

Rhossili is also one of the best places to surf in Wales if you fancy stopping to catch some waves. After a drink and a bite to eat, make your way back, either on foot if you’re still feeling energetic, or by bus if not!

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Short coastal walks in Wales

Rotherslade to Caswell Bay - South Wales

Rotherslade to Caswell Bay - South Wales

This is a nice short coastal walk in South Wales, perfect for an afternoon stroll or an early morning wander to blow away the cobwebs. Once you’ve reached Caswell Bay, you can retrace your steps, bringing the total distance to 4 miles. 

Taking you past Langland Bay, this walk follows a mainly surfaced path with a handrail, along sloping cliffs around to sandy Caswell Bay. High up on the cliffs you can enjoy the panoramic views across land and sea; when the tide is out you can go rock pooling to see what the tides have left behind.

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Aberporth Inclusive Access Cliff Top Trail - Cardigan Bay

Aberporth Inclusive Access Cliff Top Trail - Cardigan Bay

If you are seeking an easy-going coastal walk in West Wales, this is an excellent choice. This wheelchair and pushchair friendly path runs along the clifftop from Headland Place and affords breathtaking views of the Ceredigion coastline and Cardigan Bay.

The path is surfaced and has gentle gradients suitable for wheelchairs. Why not stop for a picnic en route, with wheelchair-friendly picnic benches situated in scenic locations to take in the impressive views out over the bay? After enjoying the coastline, the easily accessible beach at Aberporth is the perfect place to stop for a rest and, more importantly, an ice cream, and there's plenty to do in Cardigan Bay if you're looking for more adventure!

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Great Orme, Llandudno

Great Orme - Llandudno

Great Orme is a fantastic place for a short walk because it is very close to the town centre of Llandudno. This beautiful landmass is very accessible for those that are looking for a nice short amble by the seaside, with fantastic elevated views. You can also get a land train or cable car to the top of the hill from the seafront which enables you to enjoy some of the many trails that circle the hill. 

Look down from the top across the bay and the town below, where you'll see the ornate pier and the peaks of Snowdonia on the horizon, as well as Anglesey and the North Wales coast. 

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FAQs about the Wales Coast Path

The Wales Coast Path is 870 miles. Its northern origin point is Saltney just outside Chester, and its southern origin point is Chepstow/Cas-gwent.

To walk the entire route you are going to need at least 12-18 days, depending on fitness levels.

The Wales Coast Path is divided into eight sections.

  • North Wales Coast and Dee Estuary (81 miles)
  • Isle of Anglesey (135 miles)
  • Llŷn and Snowdonia Coast (167 miles)
  • Ceredigion (75 miles)
  • Pembrokeshire Coast Path (182 miles)
  • Carmarthenshire (68 miles)
  • Gower and Swansea Bay (69 miles)
  • South Wales Coast and Severn Estuary (97 miles)

The best coastal walks in Wales on a map

Find all the coastal walk origin/endpoints in this guide on our handy map.

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Start planning your Wales holiday

Why not stay in a self-catering holiday cottage near the Wales Coastal Path? We have cosy accommodation for couples and larger properties for family groups and friend reunions. Visit our collection of self-catering holiday homes today to find your perfect place to stay in coastal Wales.

Coastal cottages in Wales

Disclaimer: Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information at the time of writing, please ensure you check carefully before making any decisions based on the contents within this article.