Wales holds a special place in my heart, as it was there that I visited at least once a year on holiday with my Aunt, who lived in a beautiful corner of Swansea known as Sandy Lane. Sadly she’s passed away now and I don’t get to visit so much, but Three Cliffs Bay is one beach that you absolutely must check out if you ever go to the South of Wales.
Three Cliffs Bay, my favourite British beach, is named after three prominent cliffs situated in a row that can be seen from quite some distance away. It’s in Pennard, Swansea, and I believe its unparalleled beauty is partly down to how much people have just left it alone.
What I love about Three Cliffs Bay is that it’s so secluded – it’s private in that you can’t drive there, and so have to undertake a fairly lengthy walk to get there. You can access it from several routes but all must be undertaken on foot, which I’ve always found to be part of the experience. The route we’d always take as children was over the golf course and then along the multitude of sandy footpaths on the top of the cliffs, which offer breathtaking scenery and lots of fun along the way – the ruins of Pennard Castle, giant sand slides, and a river to dip your toes in, to name a few. The most fun way to access the beach is to run down the cliff via a particularly large sand slide and then follow the river through the marshes until you eventually reach the sandy beaches.
Because the beach is so secluded it’s largely been left untouched – there are no buildings such as shops or cafés, and you won’t find any public toilets either. Some might find this an inconvenience and it does make it less accessible that other local beaches, but for those of us that want to experience something truly natural it makes the place perfect. The sea is wonderful to swim in, often with great waves for water sports, and you can spend your time exploring the caves or sunning on the beach. The wildlife is amazing too – I’ve come across hundreds of starfish when I visited in the spring, and there’s plenty of curious creatures such as anemones and small fish in the rock pools. It’s also a known rock-climbing spot so you’ll often see people scaling the cliffs.
Like many other British beaches the tide is certainly something to be aware of, and it’s good to plan your trip before you go to avoid finding yourself cut off by the river bed (which fills very quickly and gets rather deep). It’s beautiful when it does come in as there’s a lot more space to swim, though be prepared to do some wading to get to the beach! When the tide is out the beach is a lot more accessible, and you can even explore left to get to Pobbles Beach (another absolutely stunning location with plenty of rock pools and caves for the kids) or right to find a whole other collection of wonderful bays leading all the way up to Oxwich Bay. Safety is so important here though, so again make sure you check the tides beforehand!
I’ve spent more days than I can count at Three Cliffs Bay, but each time I walk to the castle and encounter that gorgeous view of the river in the valley leading to the sea I just can’t help but feel completely in awe. There’s something so magical about the place – it’s one of those beaches that you can spend an entire day at away from civilisation, and feel absolutely refreshed and enlightened after doing so. I’ve got so many memories of the place, from having barbeques on the beach as kids to even swimming in the river alongside the cows (it’s Wales, don’t ask!) and if you visit I can guarantee you’ll never forget your time there.
Have you visited the stunning Three Cliffs Bay before? Leave a comment if you liked my review, and don’t forget to like and pin! You can check out my review for another (wildly different) UK beach I love here: