Gower Villages

Bishopston

Bishopston is a large village situated at the head of the Bishopston Valley - a great location from which to explore Gower. The beautiful Valley winds down to Pwlldu Bay which is one of the more secluded beaches and ideal to escape the crowds in the busy summer months. Brandy Cove as just a short walk around the coast but why stop there with the whole of the gower coast accessible to you.

The village has a well stocked Spar Supermarket and three excellent local pubs one of which , The Joiners Arms, brewing its own Ales. All three pubs serve food.

Caswell Bay

Caswell is a beautiful Blue Flag beach with a large car park and its own beachside restaurant as well as a snack bar and beach shop. There is a lifeguard in attendance during the summer months and GSD surf school in operation. Out of season this beach becomes a surfer's paradise. Cross the little stream which divides the beach and you are in a lovely cove surrounded by rocks. Don't worry about being being cut off as the tide comes in as there is a second path that leads back to the road. To your left, as you approach  the bay at low tide, is a vast expanse of sand bordered by  rocks. A cliff path which runs up behind the cafe and around the headland connects Langland and Caswell Bay - In local legend Caswell is called ‘the big boys side’. The coastal path also runs around the headland on the right hand side of the beach towards the beaches of Brandy Cove and Pwll du, but it is easier to pick up this path from the road which runs through the trees on the cliff behind the beach. Caswell is a busy beach in summer but there is plenty of room for all. Inland from the beach there is Bishop’s Wood Nature Reserve with lovely woods where you roam through mature trees. The semi-natural woodland is a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and contains a wide range of shrubs and plants. Part of the wood is also classified as ancient woodland.

Caswell is a beautiful Blue Flag beach with a large car park and its own beachside restaurant as well as a snack bar and beach shop. There is a lifeguard in attendance during the summer months and GSD surf school in operation. Out of season this beach becomes a surfer's paradise. Cross the little stream which divides the beach and you are in a lovely cove surrounded by rocks. Don't worry about being being cut off as the tide comes in as there is a second path that leads back to the road. To your left, as you approach  the bay at low tide, is a vast expanse of sand bordered by  rocks. A cliff path which runs up behind the cafe and around the headland connects Langland and Caswell Bay - In local legend Caswell is called ‘the big boys side’. The coastal path also runs around the headland on the right hand side of the beach towards the beaches of Brandy Cove and Pwll du, but it is easier to pick up this path from the road which runs through the trees on the cliff behind the beach. Caswell is a busy beach in summer but there is plenty of room for all. Inland from the beach there is Bishop’s Wood Nature Reserve with lovely woods where you roam through mature trees. The semi-natural woodland is a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and contains a wide range of shrubs and plants. Part of the wood is also classified as ancient woodland.

Cheriton

The small village of Cheriton is tucked away in the North West of the Gower peninsula. It is a rural village said to have the most beautiful church in Gower, The Church of St Cadog. It also boasts the oldest inhabited building in Gower, a 15th century glebe house, built for the order of Knights Hospitaller of St.John.

It is a superb base to explore Gower from and relax away from the urban bustle. A walk from Cheriton church through the neighbouring Llanmadoc village, down through the wooded escarpment and Cwm Ivy woods will be worth it for the glittering expanse of sand dune, forest and estuary landscape and the original cast iron Whiteford Lighthouse you find at the end! Footpaths lead up a wooded valley to Stembridge and over the hill to the village of Llangennith.

The Britannia Inn is a perfect place to enjoy the awe inspiring views over the Loughor Estuary. The 18th century pub, situated in nearby Llanmadoc has a restaurant and beer garden.

Langland

Langland - Has many lovely houses with views over the sea. Just a little way out of the busy centre of Mumbles. This area benefits from the two most popular and child friendly beaches in the area, Langland and Rotherslade. Connected at low tide but each with its own charm and character.

Rotherslade, or Little Langland, is a small cove with interesting rock formations and caves. Steep steps lead down from a cafe terrace to the beach. So if you don’t feel energetic have a coffee and admire the view.

Langland Bay itself is more accessible, with a slip allowing pushchairs onto the beach. A curving bay with Victorian beach huts and palm trees. Ample parking and three eateries, one an upmarket licensed Brasserie and the other two beach side cafes with everything from bacon sandwiches (to dream about) to buckets and spades. A surfers venue with a designated swimmers area with life guards on duty. Rock pools galore and lovely golden sand, watch the world go by whilst you eat your sarnie.

At one end of the beach is Langland Golf club which borders the path that leads across the cliffs to Caswell Bay and the rest of Gower. There is another excellent cafe at Caswell to spur you on to Brandy Cove and Pwll Du Bay. Don’t get carried away as the path continues around the whole of Gower to Worm’s Head and beyond to the LLougher Estuary.

Easy walking (if a bit uphill) to Mumbles itself from Langland Bay. Langland is an excellent location from which to venture out to the rest of the Gower. A drink outside the Langland Brasserie might persuade you to stay put.

Llanmorlais

From the Welsh 'Glanmorlais' - on the banks of the Morlais stream. This is a small village close to the village of Crofty which offers a shop for provisions and lovely local pub called the Crofty Inn, which serves excellent food.

North Gower

The National Trust owned marsh is seven miles long and is considered to be a valuable habitat for wildlife. It is very popular with birders as it attracts many exotic visitors. The ‘Big sky’ landscape, regularly attracts artists who come to photograph and paint both the villages and the marsh landscape. There are huge flocks of starlings at the right time of year, swooping back and forth across the estuary. There has been a Hen Harrier in residence for the last couple of years, skeins of migrating geese in autumn setting out from the Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust’s reserve across the estuary, grumbling and squawking at each other as they cross over head arguing about which way is south.

Visit North Gower and be overwhelmed by the peace and quiet and the feeling of being immersed in the local wildlife – it doesn’t attract the buckets and spades of the south Gower beaches. Walk onto Whitford Sands in the middle of summer and you might well be the only person there. Walk out onto the marsh and have it to yourself apart from the ponies…and sheep…and Egrits…and herons…and ducks…and starlings...........

Llanrhidian

One of the string of villages which line the salt marsh along the edge of the Loughor Estuary. This is a lovely village with its two pubs and an award winning local restaurant, 'The Welcome to Town'. This is a fabulous location from which to explore the Loughor Estuary with Whiteford sands, Broughton and Rhossili Bay just a short drive away 

North Gower

The National Trust owned marsh is seven miles long and is considered to be a valuable habitat for for wildlife. It is very popular with birders as it attracts many exotic visitors. The ‘Big sky’ landscape, regularly attracts artists who come to photograph and paint both the villages and the marsh landscape. There are huge flocks of starlings at the right time of year, swooping back and forth across the estuary. There has been a Hen Harrier in residence for the last couple of years, skeins of migrating geese in autumn setting out from the Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust’s reserve across the estuary, grumbling and squawking at each other as they cross over head arguing about which way is south. 

Visit North Gower a be overwhelmed by the peace and quiet and the feeling of being immersed in the local wildlife – it doesn’t attract the buckets and spades of the south Gower beaches.  Walk onto Whitford Sands in the middle of summer and be the only person there. Walk out onto the marsh and have it to yourself apart from the ponies…and sheep…and Egrits…and herons…and ducks…and starlings...........

Mumbles

The village of Mumbles is known as the gateway to Gower. What was a fishing village with a Norman Castle is now  a vibrant centre with restaurants, cafes, bars and boutique shops. A good base for your holiday with all these amenities, beaches within easy walking distance and the isolated beaches of the Gower a short distance away. Escape to Rhossili beach in twenty minutes, and return to Mumbles for a wonderful evening out without worrying about having to drive.

On offer is also an amusement arcade, skating rink, parks with children's play areas, Mumbles Pier and even a friday night film show in the local hall. During the summer holidays there is also children’s activities in the park provided free of charge by the local authority. Mumbles hosts numerous festivals and events. The Mumbles Jazz festival attracts musicians from around the world and the Navy Days Festival gets bigger every year. The Raft Race is a big event with local community groups, businesses and pubs getting together to race across the bay in ingenious and comical home made rafts. There are too many art fairs and craft markets to mention as well as a monthly farmers market, do not miss the famed lamb burgers cooked on a market stall and served with a mint dressing and a big mushroom in a bun, delicious.

If you want a change of scene there is the land train which connects Mumbles to the Blackpill Lido with a lovely cafe overlooking  the paddling and play areas for the children. Futher around the Bay is Swansea itself for shopping as well as museums, art galleries, Wales' premier waterpark the LC and the historic Maritime Quarter.

The beaches closest to Mumbles are Limeslade and Bracelet Bay. The former has ample parking, a cafe and Italian restaurant with spectacular views over the bay. The latter an old fashioned style ice cream parlor and cafe.

Further along the cliff path are Rotherslade and Langland which are the most popular beaches in the area. There is parking and a number of child friendly cafes. The Langland Brasserie is located next the beach and is open  all day for lunch, afternoon tea and evening meals in a truly fantastic setting.

Leave your cares behind and your car if you wish and experience the laid back approach to life in Mumbles where everyone wears shorts from March to October. 

Murton

Murton village is a small community on the Mumbles side of Gower.  Murton is blessed with a village shop, a post office and a well equipped play area on the village green. The local farm sells fruit and vegtables in Murton Farm Shop which is open from 8am until 5pm on Fridays and Saturdays; 80% of the produce is grown on the farm itself. The local pub is called the Plough and Harrow, it welcomes families and serves home cooked food.   The closest beach is Caswell Bay which you can walk to along a farm track which takes you through to a wooded valley part of which is a nature reserve and site of special scientific interest. Murton is a great base to explore all of Gower and is a 5 minute drive from the village of Mumbles with its restaurants, bars and boutiques.

Oxwich

Oxwich is a small pretty village with a shop, a hotel and a church on the edge of the beach. The hotel has a restaurant which is open to the public. There is a large beer garden and a children's play area is provided. It is open all through the day and evening. There is a good view of the beach from the garden. Many weddings are held in the grounds of the hotel because of the beautiful location.

The main road into Oxwich leads through the woods and out across the salt marshes and the nature reserve. At the end of this road is a large car park designated for the beach. The beach itself is at the western end of a glorious three mile expanse of golden sand. It is very accessible and you can stay near to the hotel and shops and watch the boats being launched from the slip way. There are water sports available at the Oxwich Bay Beach Club such as dinghy sailing and windsurfing. There is also a Castle located in Oxwich. This 'castle' is actually a 16th century Tudor manor house built in courtyard style by Sir Rice Mansel (1487-1559) about 1541, on the site of an earlier medieval castle. The Mansells were for many years one of the most influential gentry families in Glamorgan. A substantial medieval tower stands about 90 metres from the house ruins. The original Oxwich Castle dates to at least the 13th century, on a headland to the west of Oxwich Bay.

Ten minutes walk east along the sand and you are surrounded by dunes with salt marshes and woods behind. So much to explore; so much plant and animal life to see. At the far end of the beach is the Great Tor which is a spectacular vertical limestone cliff.

Heading west from the car park you follow a path through woods skirting the bay. You come across St Illtyd’s church, lost in the trees with its ancient graveyard. Continue over the headland called Oxwich Point, and there is Slade. Yet another beautiful bay which is much quieter due to the absence of parking.

The minimal development at Oxwich does not detract from the magnificence and tranquility of the bay. You will not be disappointed.

 

Parkmill

This small rural settlement threads along the bottom of a ‘Merlinesque’ wooded valley. Once lying in a medieval deer park it is the perfect area to explore Gower, the first designated AONB from. Local attractions include Park tre Breos burial chamber, a partly restored prehistoric, megalithic chambered long barrow. Next door are Parc le Breos pony trekking stables and The Gower Heritage Centre, a rural museum based around a working 12th century water mill with craft centre and shops, play areas, farm animals and excellent cafe. St. Illtyd’s Church can be reached via the hill in Illston, a tiny 13th century chapel restored in 2000.

Across the Gower road, opposite Shepherds cafe and grocers, a walk through the wooded valley past the meandering Pennard Pill directs you into the dunescape and fringing limestone crags of Pennard Burrows, then into Three Cliffs Bay.  Contemporary Welsh food, local wines and ales can be enjoyed in the local Parkmill restaurant and pubs.

Penclawdd

Penclawdd was once a thriving seaport exporting goods from the local copper works, the coal mines and of course its famous seafood, from the Loughor estuary. Rows of little terraced houses, with fantastic views, line the roads in the centre of the village and although the copper works and mines closed a long time ago, "Penclawdd Cockles" are still renowned today, although most of the industry is now located in the nearby villages of Crofty and Llanmorlais.

The views across the estuary are stunning all year round and it is a perfect base to explore the North Gower coves and beaches by foot or drive a little way over the common to the blue flag beaches of South Gower, the bustling fishing village of Mumbles or Swansea with it’s marina, museums and large waterpark. It’s position alongside the estuary attracts lots of marine and bird life too.

There is a large children’s playground in the bustling little town as well as a supermarket, two butchers selling local saltmarsh lamb a chemist and post office.

The town also boasts two bistro pubs that serve the most delicious, local seafood, a chinese and thai take away and fish and chip shop.

Penmaen

The village of Penmaen lies just north of the stunning Three Cliffs bay and at the foot of Cefn Bryn, the highest point on Gower. The area offers fantastic access to a number of family friendly beaches including Three Cliffs, Tor Bay and Oxwich, as well as some of the best sea views in the area. 

Pennard

Pennard Village has its own golf course which not only affords an excellent game, but also has spectacular scenery thrown in. The only downside is that looking over magnificent sea views may put you off your swing.

Close by is Southgate with its lovely cafes and cliff walks, east to Pwlldu Bay and west to Pobbles and Three Cliffs Bay. There is also a small supermarket and a social club serving alcoholic beverages, which is open to the public. This area is not open to through traffic and therefore is not too busy. Forget your car and walk and enjoy this village which is so beautifully situated right on the coastal path with facilities on tap.

Reynoldston

Reynoldston is a pretty village with excellent access to many beaches on Gower, such as Oxwich Bay and Three Cliffs.  The local pub in Reynoldston,The King Arthur is well renowned and serves excellent pub food and is a perfect location for an evening drink in the beautiful beer garden.  Forming the backdrop to Reynoldston Village is Cefn Bryn, the highest point on Gower, which offers stunning views across the scenic landscape and perfect for walking and hiking and horse riding.

Rhossili

The village of Rhossili is located at the western most tip of Gower and is famous for its award winning beach, much loved by surfers, walkers and artists. The awe inspiring views of this beach are a must see for any visitor of Gower. The dominant feature of the landscape is Worms Head. Comprising of two rocky islands, it is connected to the mainland by a narrow causeway which is accessible at low tide. The village has a pub, cafe, shop and National Trust shop. The village is backed by Rhossili Down which provides fabulous walking and amazing views over the village, the beach and Worms Head.

Southgate

The clifftop area of Southgate is a beautiful and relaxed part of Gower's coast, lying just south of the village of Pennard. The National Trust car park makes the area a convenient place to set out on a coastal walk. From here you can reach beaches such as Pwll Du Bay, Pobbles and Three Cliffs within a short distance. The cliffs near Southgate are also well known for their sport climbing routes. Don't forget to grab a cup of tea or an ice cream from the Three Cliffs Coffee Shop or Maddocks Tea Room after a day out exploring! 

Swansea Marina

To the Southeast of Swansea's city centre lies the award winning Maritime Quarter. At its heart is a marina surrounded by restaurants, shops and marine businesses. Swansea Marina is one of a handful in the UK to hold the coveted Yacht Harbour Association 5 Gold Anchor award. Five is the highest number of anchors awarded indicating the exceptional facilities available to sailors at the marina. This is the perfect location for those wishing to get out onto the water. There are a number of charter companies in operation providing sailing opportunities for all abilities. Sea fishing trips are also available and there is a BSAC diving school. Swansea Watersports are based in the quarter offering a wide variety of water based activities, from Dinghy sailing to jet skis. Swansea's first cable Wake Boarding centre can also be found at the Prince of Wales dock. Other attractions on your doorstep include the LC water park, National Waterfront Centre, Dylan Thomas Centre and Swansea Museum.

It is a short walk from the Maritime Quartes to Swansea City Centre with its shops, pubs, theatres, cinemas, restaurants and sporting facilities.The Maritime Quarter is also connected to the beach. It is here that the sweep of Swansea Bay begins with golden sand and a promenade running its entire length to the popular village of Mumbles which is only five miles away at the other end of the bay. Swansea Bay Promenade is a great place to walk or cycle on a sunny day. A variety of water sports can often be seen in the bay and its a great place to watch the experts Kite Surfing.

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