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Pembrokeshire Coast Path

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The coastline of south-west Wales is without doubt some of the finest and most unspoilt in Europe. The Pembrokeshire Coast Path follows this remarkable line of cliffs and beaches for 186 miles (or 200 if you take in all the detours suggested by the guidebooks). Although there are no great mountains to climb on this route, the high point of the route is only 175m, the consistent presence of high cliff tops results in a large amount of ascent and descent as the path rises and falls to the shoreline; in total there is around 35,000 feet of ascent on the route.     

Pembrokeshire Coast Path

As well as stunning cliffs, beaches, arches, caves and picturesque fishing villages, this coastline has a deep history to offer with Iron Age forts, Norman castles and Napoleonic defences. Almost all the trail lies within the National Park and well over half is in important conservation sites; this truly is a special landscape.

Beginning at the pleasant village of Amroth on the south coast of the Pembrokeshire peninsula, the trail climbs almost immediately on the way to Saundersfoot, which is entered, unusually, via a short, disused railway tunnel. From here, the trail skirts woodland and passes the impressive Monkstone Point before reaching the popular weekend escape of the fishing village at Tenby with its brightly painted row of houses. After rounding the castle, the trail takes to the beach for the first time on the way to Giltar point (watch out for red flags flying over the rifle range here) and a long section of peaceful limestone clifftop walking past Manorbier and on to Freshwater Bay, Stackpole Quay and the lovely Barafundle Bay. Just beyond here are some natural stone arches on the approach to Stackpole Head.    

From Broadhaven you can head inland via the lily ponds at Bosherston or keep to the coast through the artillery range. Combining the two is a good idea here, if the range is open to the public, as the coast here has some great features including the secret church of St Govan and the Green Bridge of Wales. Rounding the headland to Angle, brings the oil terminal of Milford Haven into view and a long urban section between Pembroke and the town of Milford Haven itself. Time things right at the stepping-stones of Sandy Haven and you'll avoid a detour or a long wait for the tide. Then the natural splendour of the coast returns on the way to another tidal crossing at Dale and the headland by Skomer and on to the sands and village of Broad Haven, and Newgale Sands.

A section of high cliffs follows as the trail passes the impressive Dinas Fawr peninsula and a worthwhile detour to the city, by dint of its cathedral, of St. Davids. Stunning coastal scenery, historic forts and burial chambers separate Whitesands Bay and Abereiddy and the theme continues all the way to Fishguard where Dinas Head marks the highest point of the route. From here, the route is predominantly through farmland all the way to Cemaes Head, Poppit Sands and the finish point at St. Dogmaels.  







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