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10 Best Seaside Towns In Wales To Visit

These seaside towns in Wales, with their rugged coastline and picturesque landscapes, beckon visitors with their unique character and natural beauty.

From the tranquil villages along the Llŷn Peninsula to the vibrant Victorian-era resorts of the north, and the historic gems of the south, these Welsh coastal towns offer a diverse range of experiences.


Seaside Towns In Wales

Whether you’re seeking relaxation on sandy beaches, exploring rich maritime history, or savouring fresh seafood, the seaside towns in Wales have something to captivate every traveller.


Tenby

This colourful and historic town in Pembrokeshire is famous for its beautiful beaches, medieval walls, and charming streets. It’s a popular destination for both tourists and locals and is easily one of the most stunning seaside towns in Wales to visit.

Tenby boasts several stunning beaches, including Castle Beach, North Beach, South Beach, and Harbour Beach.

Tenby has a rich history dating back to the medieval period. The town is known for its well-preserved town walls, which were built in the 13th century. You can explore the historic town centre with its narrow, cobbled streets and colourful buildings.

Located just offshore from Tenby’s South Beach, St. Catherine’s Island is home to a Victorian-era fort, known as St. Catherine’s Fort. It’s a fascinating historical site to visit, and you can access it during low tide via a causeway.

Caldey Island is located just a short boat ride from Tenby and is known for its Cistercian monastery and tranquil environment. You can explore the island’s beaches, and gardens, and visit the monastery’s gift shop.

Tenby is a charming and picturesque town with much to offer, whether you’re interested in history, outdoor activities, or simply relaxing on the beach and is one of the best seaside towns in Wales to visit.

Search for hotels in Tenby here.

Aberystwyth

Located on the west coast of Wales, Aberystwyth is known for its charming promenade, historic pier, and the Aberystwyth Cliff Railway, which offers panoramic views of the town and Cardigan Bay.

It is known for its picturesque setting situated between the Cambrian Mountains and the Irish Sea.

The town is a popular tourist destination due to its beautiful beaches, historic architecture, and the Aberystwyth Cliff Railway, which offers panoramic views of the surrounding area.

Aberystwyth has a vibrant cultural scene, with theatres, art galleries, and music festivals. The town also hosts the National Library of Wales, one of the UK’s copyright libraries, which houses a vast collection of Welsh literature and historical documents.

Welsh is widely spoken in Aberystwyth, and the town is part of a region in Wales where the Welsh language is still prominent.

Aberystwyth is a charming and historic town that combines natural beauty with cultural and educational amenities.

Search for hotels in Aberystwyth here.

Llandudno

Often referred to as the “Queen of Welsh Resorts,” Llandudno is a popular Victorian-era seaside town in North Wales. It’s known for its long promenade, cable car rides, and the Great Orme, a prominent headland.

Llandudno rose to prominence as a popular seaside resort during the Victorian era. Many of its buildings, including hotels and guesthouses, were constructed in the Victorian era, giving the town a distinctive, elegant architectural style.

The town boasts a lengthy promenade that runs along the seafront, providing a scenic place for a leisurely stroll. The promenade is lined with shops, cafes, and amusements, making it a hub of activity during the tourist season.

Llandudno’s Victorian pier is one of the longest in Wales and offers various amusements, shops, and places to enjoy the views of the sea.

A large limestone headland, known as the Great Orme, stands at the northwest end of Llandudno and is a prominent natural attraction. You can take a tramway or cable car to the summit, where you’ll find stunning panoramic views, a visitor’s centre, and the Great Orme Mines, a Bronze Age mining site.

The smaller limestone headland of the Little Orme is located to the east of Llandudno and is known for its walking trails and birdwatching opportunities.

Llandudno has a connection to Lewis Carroll, author of “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.” The town has an Alice in Wonderland-themed trail, which includes statues and features related to the famous story.

Llandudno has two beautiful sandy beaches, North Shore and West Shore, both of which are great for swimming and sunbathing.

Llandudno is easily one of the best seaside towns in Wales to visit.

Search for hotels in Llandudno here.

New Quay

Located on the Ceredigion coast, New Quay is a quaint fishing town famous for its beautiful beaches, dolphin watching, and the stunning views of Cardigan Bay.

New Quay’s harbour is a focal point of the town, and it’s a great place to enjoy views of the sea, watch the fishing boats, and relax at one of the many cafes and pubs. Nearby, you’ll find sandy beaches like Harbour Beach and Dolau Beach, perfect for swimming and sunbathing.

New Quay is famous for its resident population of bottlenose dolphins. You can take boat trips from the harbour to see these playful creatures in their natural habitat. There are several local operators that offer dolphin-watching tours.

The Ceredigion Coast Path passes through New Quay, providing excellent opportunities for hiking and exploring the stunning coastline and countryside.

Aside from dolphins, the area is known for its diverse wildlife, including seals and various bird species. The Cardigan Bay Marine Wildlife Centre, located in New Quay, provides information and educational resources about the local marine life.

New Quay has a rich maritime history, and you can learn more about it at the New Quay Maritime Museum. The town was once a bustling port for shipbuilding, fishing, and smuggling.

Beaches: In addition to the harbour beaches, New Quay is also near Traethgwyn and Traethycedyrn beaches, which are popular for their clean sands and clear waters.

Barmouth

Nestled on the estuary of the River Mawddach, Barmouth is known for its long sandy beach, picturesque harbour, and the Barmouth Bridge, which offers breathtaking views of the surrounding area and is one of the best seaside towns in Wales to visit.

The estuary of the River Mawddach provides opportunities for boating, fishing, and wildlife watching. There is a scenic railway line that crosses the estuary, offering stunning views of the surrounding area.

The Barmouth Bridge is a historic wooden railway viaduct that spans the Mawddach Estuary. It’s a popular walking and cycling route, providing excellent views of the estuary and the surrounding landscape.

Barmouth is a great base for exploring the Ceredigion Coast Path and the Mawddach Trail, both of which offer fantastic walking routes along the coast and through the countryside.

Barmouth Harbour is a picturesque area with a marina, fishing boats, and opportunities for watersports such as sailing and kayaking. The harbour area is also home to various shops, restaurants, and cafes.

Dinas Oleu is a hillside garden and the first piece of land acquired by the National Trust. It offers beautiful views of the surrounding area and is a lovely place for a leisurely stroll.

Just across the estuary, you’ll find the village of Fairbourne. It’s known for its miniature steam railway, which runs alongside the beautiful Mawddach Estuary.

Barmouth serves as a gateway to Snowdonia National Park, a haven for outdoor enthusiasts. You can access the park’s many trails, mountains, and natural wonders from Barmouth.

Porthcawl

This traditional South Wales seaside town is famous for its sandy beaches, amusement parks, and the Grand Pavilion, which hosts various events and performances.

Porthcawl has several beautiful beaches, including Coney Beach and Sandy Bay. These sandy stretches offer opportunities for sunbathing, swimming, and water sports. Coney Beach is particularly well-known for its amusements and fairground.

The town’s pier is a historic structure dating back to the late 19th century. It offers scenic views of the sea and is a popular spot for leisurely strolls.

Porthcawl’s promenade runs along the seafront and is lined with cafes, restaurants, and shops. It’s a pleasant place for a walk and offers stunning views of the Bristol Channel.

The Porthcawl Pavilion is a venue for entertainment and events, including live performances, concerts, and theatre productions.

Coney Beach Amusement Park is a popular attraction for families, featuring rides, arcade games, and various amusements.

Mumbles

Situated near Swansea, the Mumbles is a delightful seaside town in Wales known for its lighthouse, charming seafront promenade, and an array of restaurants and shops.

Mumbles Pier is an iconic structure and a hub of activity. It offers spectacular views of Swansea Bay and the chance to go crabbing or enjoy traditional amusements.

The Mumbles Lighthouse, situated on Mumbles Head, is a distinctive and historic landmark that guides ships into Swansea Bay. It is a popular spot for walks and offers panoramic views of the coastline.

The Mumbles Promenade stretches along the seafront and is a fantastic place for leisurely strolls, cycling, and taking in the sea views. It’s also lined with various cafes, restaurants, and shops.

Oystermouth Castle is located in the heart of Mumbles. You can explore its ruins, which offer insight into the region’s medieval history.

The RNLI Mumbles Lifeboat Station is open to the public and provides an opportunity to learn about the work of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution. It’s located at the end of the Mumbles Pier.

Mumbles boasts several beautiful beaches, including Bracelet Bay and Limeslade Bay. These beaches are ideal for relaxation, sunbathing, and coastal walks.

Mumbles Lighthouse.

Porthmadog

Located in Gwynedd, Porthmadog is a picturesque town with access to the stunning Snowdonia National Park. The town’s harbour and proximity to the Welsh Highland and Ffestiniog Railways make it a unique destination and a lovely seaside town in Wales to see.

Porthmadog’s picturesque harbour is a hub of activity. You can watch the comings and goings of boats and enjoy the views of the estuary. The town’s maritime heritage is still evident, and there are opportunities for boat trips and water-based activities.

The Ffestiniog Railway, one of the oldest narrow-gauge railways in the world, starts in Porthmadog. It offers scenic steam train rides through Snowdonia, providing breathtaking views of the Welsh landscape.

The Welsh Highland Railway also departs from Porthmadog, offering another scenic rail journey through Snowdonia, including impressive mountain scenery.

Porthmadog is close to several beautiful beaches, including Black Rock Sands, which is a wide, sandy beach ideal for family outings and water sports.

The Italian-style village of Portmeirion is just a short drive from Porthmadog. It’s famous for its unique architecture, beautiful gardens, and the setting of the TV series “The Prisoner.”

Glaslyn Wildlife: The estuary and surrounding area provide excellent opportunities for birdwatching and wildlife spotting. You might see a variety of bird species, seals, and even dolphins in the area.

Porthmadog is a gateway to the natural wonders of Snowdonia National Park, offering a wide range of outdoor activities such as hiking, mountain biking, and water sports.

Fishguard

Found in Pembrokeshire, Fishguard is known for its rugged coastline, historic harbour, and beautiful cliffs. It’s a great starting point for exploring the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park.

Fishguard’s harbour is a bustling place with fishing boats, ferries to Ireland, and a waterfront area where you can enjoy scenic views. The harbor also features an esplanade with shops, cafes, and restaurants.

Lower Town is a charming and historic fishing village within Fishguard. It’s a tranquil spot with a small harbour, cobblestone streets, and a delightful place for a leisurely stroll, and one of the best seaside towns in Wales.

Fishguard Bay provides opportunities for water-based activities like sailing, fishing, and exploring the coastline by boat.

Fishguard is famous for the “Last Invasion of Britain” in 1797. The Fishguard Tapestry, displayed in the town hall, tells the story of this event. The Last Invasion Heritage Trail allows you to explore the historic sites associated with the invasion.

The Pembrokeshire Coast Path passes through Fishguard, offering stunning coastal walks and the chance to explore the rugged cliffs, beaches, and wildlife of the Pembrokeshire coastline.

Located near Fishguard, Strumble Head Lighthouse is a picturesque landmark on the rocky coastline. It offers dramatic views of the sea and the surrounding area.

Local Art Scene: The town has a thriving arts community, and you can explore local art galleries and studios showcasing the work of Welsh artists.

Fishguard is a wonderful destination for those who appreciate a blend of history, natural beauty, and cultural experiences.

Whether you’re interested in exploring the historic sites, enjoying the coastal scenery, or participating in the vibrant arts scene, Fishguard has much to offer and makes for one of the best seaside towns in Wales to visit.

Search for hotels in Fishguard here.

Aberdaron

Situated on the Llŷn Peninsula, Aberdaron is a remote and peaceful coastal village with stunning beaches and a picturesque harbour. It’s an ideal spot for those seeking tranquillity.

The village has a beautiful sandy beach, which is a great spot for relaxation and swimming during the warmer months.

Y Rhiw: The nearby headland of Y Rhiw offers breathtaking views of the surrounding coastline and is a great place for hiking and taking in the natural beauty of the area.

You can take boat trips from Aberdaron to nearby islands like Bardsey Island (Ynys Enlli), which is known for its rich wildlife and historical importance.

The Llŷn Peninsula offers many opportunities for coastal walks with stunning views, and Aberdaron is a great starting point for exploring the area.

Aberdaron is known for its Welsh-speaking community and its connection to Welsh culture and heritage.


Tip: For a good overall travel guide to Wales pick up the Lonely Planet Wales.


Wales Seaside

Tenby.

These seaside towns in Wales offer a blend of natural beauty, history, and Welsh charm, making them excellent destinations for travellers looking to explore the coast of Wales.

For more on Wales take a look at the 15 best castles in Wales to visit.

Tip: For a good overall travel guide to Wales pick up the Lonely Planet Wales.

Another good guidebook option that is for all of Great Britain is Rick Steves Great Britain.

For more seaside towns take a look at the 10 best seaside towns in Devon to visit.


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