Best Beaches West Wales Within Easy Reach of the Cottages

Our Favourite Beaches to Visit in West Wales

We are really spoilt when it comes to beaches to visit in West Wales. Whether you prefer a secluded sandy bay or one you can walk along with views for miles, there is one to suit you. Head west to Cardigan Bay or south to Carmarthen Bay and Pembrokeshire and you will find quiet coves, quaint seaside towns and wildlife in abundance.


Penbryn best beaches West Wales

Penbryn is a mile long stretch of golden sand with caves to explore at one end at low tide. It is around 1/4 of a mile down the road from the car park or take the beautiful woodland walk from behind the Plwmp Tart cafe. This is about 1/2 a mile and steep in places, but is totally enchanting! The Wales Coast Path leads from the beach in both directions with gorgeous views across the bay. An ideal spot for stargazing – Penbryn Beach is a designated Dark Skies Discovery site.

The drive to Penbryn is about 40 minutes from the cottages. See more here: Walking at Penbryn


Llangrannog Beach - best beaches West Wales

A popular beach with surfers and great for people-watching. There are also excellent cafes and pubs beside the beach. The views from the coast path here are some of the best in Wales. At low tide you can also access Cilborth beach to the right. Grab a pizza from Tafell a Tan and eat it on the beach.

Find out more: Visiting Llangrannog


Cilborth Beach

A beautiful more secluded beach. Accessible at low tide direct from Llangrannog beach or by a set of steep steps from the coast path. The route is steep and unsuitable for people with limited mobility. This is one of our favourite beaches as it never seems to get too crowded and the high cliffs and rocks give it a lovely atmosphere. The cliffs are great for birdwatching too.

More Info: Cilborth Beach


Mwnt Beach is around 1 hour from the cottages and is situated between the towns of Cardigan and Aberporth, on the Cardigan Bay coastline. It is nestled within a designated conservation area, known for its rugged cliffs, sandy beach, and rich biodiversity. Watch out for dolphins in the sea and rare Choughs flying overhead. Mwnt is on the Wales Coast Path, and has breathtaking views along the walking trails. In Spring the Gorse is so beautiful and smells delicious. Overlooking the beach is the historic Mwnt Church, which dates back to the 14th century.

Find out more: Visiting Mwnt


Tresaith is a small beach with a lot to offer! It famously has an extraordinary waterfall to the right of the beach. The coastal path between Tresaith & Aberporth is a lovely walk (mostly easy). We love having lunch at the Ship Inn with views over Tresaith Beach. A perfect spot for Dolphin-Spotting.

The drive to Tresaith is about 40 minutes from the cottages. More about Tresaith.


Aberporth lies at the southern end of Cardigan Bay about six miles north of Cardigan and ten miles south of New Quay. It overlooks two sandy beaches both with European Blue Flag status. Dyffryn Beach is to the west of the headland and Dolwen Beach to the east. The beaches both have soft golden sand and shelve gently into the sea and there are rock pools to explore too.

The town is very pretty with some lovely cafes and pubs and the walk along the coastal path to Tresaith is one of our favourites.

Find out more: A visit to Aberporth

New Quay

New Quay is in Cardigan Bay, just 30 minutes drive from the cottages. It is a quaint and very pretty seaside town with two beaches – Harbour beach and Dolau. Just outside of the town are Traeth Gwyn (or Llanina beach) and Cei Bach – both much wilder and they tend to be quieter.

Take a walk along the harbour wall as it is a prime spot for seeing dolphins. Or take a boat trip for a better chance of seeing dolphins and seals. More on New Quay’s Beaches.


Cwmtydu is a small pebble beach in Cardigan Bay with direct access to a stunning part of the Coastal Path. You can park right behind the beach and climb the path to the right of the beach for amazing views. Walk along the cliffs to Castell Bach Bay and then to the very quiet beach of Cwm Silio. There is plenty of bird life around too – we often see kestrels, ravens and rare choughs. Cwmtydu and the surrounding coves are a popular place for seals to raise their pups so it is important during September & October not to disturb them.

Find out more: Visiting Cwmtydu


A little further than the beaches of Cardigan Bay, Saundersfoot is about an hour and 10 minutes away. It is a pretty Pembrokeshire town with a harbour and great pubs and cafes. We recommend lunch at Harbwr. The wide open beach is perfect for walking and if you fancy a longer stretch, try parking at Wiseman’s Bridge beach and follow the old tramway path along the sea front.

More Info: Saundersfoot Beach


Ynyslas Beach and dunes are part of the Dyfi National Nature Reserve. You can park right on the beach and there are waymarked walks to follow and a visitor centre. The beach is on the Dyfi estuary and you can see pretty Aberdyfi across the water on the other side. An abundance of birds to spot and beautiful scenery. About an hour and 10 mins drive from the cottages.

Find out more: Visiting Ynyslas

Visiting Amazing Aberporth Right After Lockdown

Monday 6th July 2020 was the first time we were allowed to travel more than 5 miles from home in Wales since the week after we moved here in March. We were so excited to be visiting Aberporth to explore the lovely beaches. It was really quiet with just a few families and surfers. So lovely to feel the sea breeze on our faces! The drive is very picturesque too and it only took us 40 minutes from Red Kite & Woodpecker Cottages.

Dyffryn Beach
Dyffryn Beach

Aberporth lies at the southern end of Cardigan Bay about six miles north of Cardigan and ten miles south of New Quay. It overlooks two sandy beaches both with European Blue Flag status.

Aberporth Beach
Dyffryn Beach from above

Dyffryn Beach is to the west of the headland and Dolwen Beach to the east. Aberporth Beach is often used to describe both of these beaches together.

Dolwen Beach

The beaches both have soft golden sand and shelve gently into the sea. They were both pretty quiet when we were there which is unusual for July. Probably because tourists weren’t allowed to visit until the following week .

Visting Aberporth.
View of the pretty houses in Aberporth from Dyffryn beach.
The beaches are popular with surfers.

We went in the afternoon when it was low tide, so there was more space to walk and we got to explore the rocks and rock pools. 🦀 🦐

Limpets and barnacles galore!
Rock Pools.

We walked on Dyffryn Beach as we had Ziggy with us – dogs aren’t allowed on Dolwen in the Summer months.

Visiting Aberporth - Dyffryn Beach
Ziggy loves the beach!
Dyffryn Beach is dog friendly all summer.
Ziggy enjoys getting his paws wet.

We also had a wander up the hill into the town and then walked down through a small wooded area back to the beach. A very pleasant stroll with views over the beaches.

Visiting Aberporth, Cardigan Bay.
View from the top of the hill back down to the beaches
Sculpture on the walk back to the beach.
Dyffryn Beach from the walk back down from town.

We couldn’t go onto Dolwen beach as dogs aren’t allowed in Summer.

Visting Aberporth - Dolwen Beach.
The steps down to Dolwen Beach
Dolphin Sculpture overlooking the Beaches – Sightings are common in this area.

The shops and cafes were still closed when we visited this time, but we went back a couple of weeks later and it was much busier with tourists and everything was open. We enjoyed a lovely salted caramel ice cream 😋

Aberporth - Dolwen Beach.
So quiet for July
Yes!! The joy of being able to have a day at the beach after lockdown!

I’m pretty sure we will never again see Aberporth so quiet in July…but come the Autumn when the crowds of tourists get smaller, we think it will be a great place to walk and chill out for an afternoon.

Walking at Pretty Penbryn Beach in the Spring

When we were planning our Big Move to Wales we did some exploring around the area and the beaches and harbour towns of Cardigan Bay were one of the deciding factors in us choosing to move to Lampeter. So for our first trip out in March 2020 we really wanted to take Ziggy for a walk at Penbryn Beach. We had been before in September when we had our second viewing of the Cottages so we already knew what a magical place it is.

Early morning walk at Penbryn. © Coedmor Cottages
Penbryn in September the day after we decided to buy The Cottages

“Social Distancing” was already in force but we weren’t yet in lockdown, so we were allowed to head to the beach for our daily exercise. Penbryn is looked after by the National Trust, so there is a proper car park which you pay a couple of pounds for and this goes towards the upkeep (and there are loos there too). The beach is a walk downhill – you have two choices here. You can walk down the road or go through the woodland. We chose to go the road route as we wanted to get to the beach asap.

Leigh & Ziggy at Penbryn.
Only Ziggy’s second time at the beach…ever!

As you reach the beach there is a stream that runs right down into the sea. Ziggy couldn’t wait to get wet…he loves water but won’t swim – he panics if he goes out of his depth. When we lived in Reading we were so far from the sea that we only took Ziggy to the beach once. He loved it, but couldn’t understand why the water tastes so bad ? At Penbryn he went crazy running on the sand – he loved the wide open space…and we were virtually the only ones there.

Penbryn Beach © Coedmor Cottages
Penbryn in March – gorgeous soft sand.
Penbryn Beach, Cardigan Bay © Coedmor Cottages

The beach is about a mile long so you can have a decent walk along it. There is a cave to explore at the right hand side of the beach if you visit at low tide. At very low tide there is another beach further around the headland, but beware as there is no other way to get off this cove so if the tide turns you could be stranded!

Caves on Penbryn Beach. © Coedmor Cottages
Cave at Penbryn

We took the scenic route back up to the car park through the enchanted valley. It really is a wonderful walk although it is quite steep in places. But there’s no rush. Take your time and enjoy the meandering pathways that take you through woodland and fern-clad terrain with a stream babbling below you.

Ziggy at the woods in Penbryn.
The stream down to Penbryn Beach. © Coedmor Cottages

Then just as you thought it couldn’t get any better, you come upon a bridge and a waterfall! Seriously, if fairies are real, this is where they live.

The Waterfall at Penbryn. © Coedmor Cottages
Penbryn Waterfall

Penbryn is about a 40 minute scenic drive from our cottages. If you want to make a full day of it you can also get onto the Wales Coast Path from Penbryn in both directions and offers gorgeous views across the bay. We like to visit the  Plwmp Tart Cafe next to the car park for a spot of lunch or a cake after our walk.

The remote location and lack of light pollution make this an ideal spot for stargazing in the summer months – Penbryn Beach is a designated Dark Skies Discovery site and dusk is a great time to see seals and barn owls in the area.

Penbryn’s Claim to Fame is that it was used for a scene in the James Bond “Die Another Day: movie! You can see why in the clip below – it looks stunning.