Cardigan Bay is famously one of the most popular holiday destinations in Wales. Dotted along the coastline are colourful seaside towns, all offering a unique flavour of this historically-rich part of Wales. With high quality restaurants, pubs and attractions, Cardigan Bay awaits.
Dolphin watch from the white sandy beaches of New Quay Bay, surf at Llangrannog beach, step back in time at Castell Henllys Iron Age Hill Fort, dine in superb restaurants in Aberaeron, search for the petrified forest of Borth, explore the wild coast through the zawns, gullies, caves, cliffs and reefs with Cardigan Bay Active and discover the edges of the country by walking the Ceredigion Coast Path.
We know unforgettable experiences are key to a fantastic holiday and we love sharing advice and recommendations with our guests so they can live like locals. Once the booking has been made, we provide every guest with a property welcome pack, containing a complete guide of activities, attractions, beaches, hikes, restaurants and pubs in the local area. Information can also be found below.
Discover our holiday homes across Cardigan Bay or speak to a member of our team about your next coastal escape.
Based in New Quay, Cardigan Bay Water Sports offers kayaking, paddleboarding, sailing, windsurfing, powerboating, waterskiing, wakeboarding. They offer equipment hire and provide taster sessions, lessons and RYA courses in beautiful New Quay bay. The center run’s special sessions such as Sunday Splash to keep kids entertained, and Paddleboard Fitness for the older water-lovers.
The Cardigan Bay Marine Wildlife Centre (CBMWC), which focuses on marine research in the area, is a non-profit organisation that is dedicated to conserving Cardigan Bay’s marine wildlife through education and research. There is a visitor centre, located on New Quay sea front, which works in conjunction with Dolphin Survey Boat Trips to collect data on the bottlenose dolphins of Cardigan Bay and the other marine mammals. Learn from experienced staff and volunteers how to spot the stunning Cardigan Bay wildlife, including; dolphins, porpoise, Atlantic grey seals and even on occasion the more unusual sunfish.
SeaMôr Boat Trips offers Cardigan Bay tours from both New Quay and Aberareon. You can book dolphin and wildlife watching boat trips which head down the beautiful Ceredigion Heritage coastline into the well known dolphin feeding areas of Llanina Reef and New Quay Bay. The marine biologist guides and knowledgeable skippers will also teach you about the local history, geology and abundant wildlife that Cardigan Bay has to offer. Kids (and adults) can have a supervised experience at steering the vessel if the weather is suitable.
Husband and wife team, Corrine and Tim Harrison, run this friendly and fun-filled sea fishing trip and tour company; Bass Fishing Trips, Sea Bass Safaris, Crab Fishing Trips and the wonderful 3 Fishes are all owned by the business. The trips are great for families and children and easy to use fishing equipment is provided free. Beginners and novices are well looked after and the best part is that you can take your catch home.
Cardigan Bay Active prides itself in offering a wide range of adventure activities which are fun, safe and showcase the best of what our natural landscapes have to offer. From Coasteering along the rugged coastline of South Wales to White Water Tube rides on the river Teifi, Kayak tours through tough river rapids to 9km long White Water raft trips, Abseiling off the mystical Preseli mountains to Archery and Axe throwing sessions in Cardigan - the options are endless.
A magical emporium for young and old and is loved by generations of families. A real treasure trove of lovely things, a trip to New Quay without a visit to the Shell Shop would be like Christmas without mince pies!
Based in Aberaeron, The Harbourmaster restaurant and bar serves the best of local produce at breakfast, lunch and dinner times. Set in a refurbished harbourmaster's house dating back to the early 1800s, this quayside restaurant is a 1-minute walk from the beach.
The Hive bar on Aberaeron quay is open throughout the day from 10am until late in the evening. You can sip cocktails whilst relaxing in the conservatory or enjoy the burgers, steak, fish and shellfish offered at The Hive Grill.
The Hive is also the home of the famous Honey Ice Cream, which is made on the premises. A yummy variety of flavours is offered; from the traditional honey vanilla and chocolate to the more exotic Honey Turkish Delight. For the more health conscious, there is also a range of tasty sorbets and yogurt ices.
Whether out for a romantic evening or a meal with friends and family you can relax and enjoy home cooked dishes from breakfast, lunch and evening dinner, including a wide selection of child meals, a choice of homemade desserts and extensive wine list and selection of beers.
Serving lunch and evening meals in either their dining room, public bar area, tiered garden or gazebo. The Black Lion show’s most major sporting events in either the bar area or the gazebo which has outside heaters. Immerses yourself in the sensational views of the Llyn peninsula and Snowdon from the beer garden.
This summery family run cafe and fish and chip shop overlooks Llangrannog bay and serves honest, home cooked food. Local beers, good wine, great coffee, cakes, fish & chips and Welsh specialities.
On the first floor you'll find the Bistro. Here you'll experience fine dining throughout the day and into the evening. They serve dishes to cater for all dietary requirements, including vegan and gluten free options. Enjoy the stunning beach front view while you eat.
Aberaeron has two beaches - one on either side of the harbour. The south beach has coarse sand at low tide and is backed by a bank of mostly boulder clay pebbles. The north beach is mostly rocks with very little sand. A dog ban operates on the south beach between the first groyne to south of Beach Parade and the Harbour Walls, from 1st May to 30th September. Away from Aberaeron the shore becomes rockier in both directions. Surf conditions can be good and usually best at low to mid-tide, but it can get crowded here.
There is P&D parking overlooking both beaches with plenty of free parking in the town on the north side of the harbour.
Aberaeron is a vibrant harbour town with welcoming locals that is perfect for a UK short break. Learn more about Aberaron and it’s history
New Quay has two main beaches - Dolau beach (west of the harbour) and Harbour beach.
Harbour beach is mostly sand and is patrolled by lifeguards from the end of June until early September. A dog ban operates May to September inclusive. A swimming zone is usually set up, but at some stages of the tide boats have to cross this to reach the moorings in the harbour. For Harbour beach weather and tides see here.
Dolau beach is north of the harbour and is approximately 120 yards wide at low tide. It is mostly coarse sand and broken shells and is backed by a seating area. Surfing, swimming, windsurfing and kayaking are popular activities and dogs are allowed at all times.
Facilities include toilets with disabled facilities, numerous food outlets, public houses, beach shops, drinking water, a seasonal Tourist Information Centre and cycle parking. There is some short term roadside parking above the beach with the Central (P&D) car park situated at the southern end of the town.
Seal pups are born here in the autumn. The beach is closed to the public at this time but you can view the seals from the car park.
The beach is widely believed to have been used for smuggling, while views over the cove can be gained by walking up the side of the restored lime kiln.
Cwmtydu has coastal walks, via the Ceredigion Coastal path, past stunning views and an iron-age fort to a National Trust beach at Cwm Silio. Find out more about this unique beach in the beach guide and discover why Cwmtydu is an ideal location for your short break
Llangrannog is an excellent beach all year round, popular with families and surfers or just for relaxing and watching the world go by from the many excellent cafes and pubs. You can choose from traditional pub food overlooking the sea, or home-made ice cream at the beach cafe. Llangrannog really does have something for everyone and makes the perfect UK short break location
At low tide it is possible to walk from the main beach at Llangrannog to the second beach, although a cliff path starting up the steps next to the Quay Café makes the second beach accessible at any time. Plan ahead by checking tide times here. A circular walk can be followed around the headland of Ynys Lochtyn which boasts Cardigan Bay’s tallest cliffs.
The Ceredigion Coast Path enters Llangrannog from Penbryn by dropping down onto the beach. Dogs are prohibited from the beach area between Nant Hawen and Pen Rhip between the 1st May and 30th September inclusive.
Tresaith beach is set in a small, sheltered, sandy bay named after the River Saith, which cascades as a waterfall over the Cardigan Bay cliffs to the beach. The beach is very popular with families during the summer offering safe swimming and rock pools. A second beach is accessed by crossing below the waterfall - take care to watch the tides.
There are public toilets near the beach with wheelchair access. There is also a café, a first aid post, a shop and The Ship Inn pub providing lots of tables inside and out for meals overlooking the beach. The beach has a slipway and is a popular sailing destination. There is limited car parking at the beach itself, but there is a large car park at the top of the hill in the main part of the village.
Dogs are prohibited from the southern beach area between the beach access point and Carreg-y-Ddafad between the 1st May and 30th September inclusive.
Mwnt is a sheltered sandy cove, owned by the National Trust. This popular West Wales beach is off the beaten track but can be extremely busy in the height of summer. There are steep steps leading down to the beach, with parking available in a field opposite the path. Swimming conditions are considered safe at Mwnt but there is no lifeguard service. A well-trodden path circles and ascends Foel y Mwnt, the conical hill from which the beach takes its name. There are no dogs allowed on the beach between the 1st May and 30th September inclusive.
Traeth Gwyn is a mile long crescent-shaped stretch of sand situated between New Quay's harbour beach and Llanina Point. It is made up of coarse sand and some shingle, backed by banks/cliffs of boulder clay. This rugged Cardigan Bay coastal path runs along the back of the beach at its eastern end, with steps up to the cliff top roughly at the centre of the beach. It is generally a safe beach for swimming and dogs are allowed at all times.
Access is either from Llanina Point or, at low to mid-tide, from New Quay. There is a small (free) car parking area at Llanina woods (Grid Ref: SN405596) from where the coastal path leads to the point. A small stream emerges onto the beach here.
Little Quay, or Cei Bach as it is also known, is about a mile and a half to the west of New Quay and around five miles from Aberaeron Harbour. The beach is sheltered and generally quiet, and you can enjoy the views over the sea and out to the Cardigan Bay. Many visitors come here for the sunsets which are said to be spectacular and if you like wildlife then you won’t be disappointed here.
When the tide is low you can walk all the way to New Quay Harbour which takes around 20 minutes. The pretty village here has lots of amenities such as bars, restaurants, and cafes. You can also take a boat trip from here which will take you out to look for seals and dolphins.
Beside the river Teifi, above the small town of Tregaron, is this excellent walk through the heart of the Bog on a timber decked walkway. The fully accessible boardwalk goes over the south-east bog and to the large observation building where you can enjoy a peaceful view of the landscape and wildlife.
Follow the footsteps of author Dylan Thomas. Although he only lived for a short time during the second world war in New Quay, it is widely believed that many locations and residents in the town became the basis of the characters in 'Under Milk Wood'.
There is an excellent walk from the centre of New Quay taking visitors high above the town where the sounds of the community can be heard from a considerable distance. From the beach front along the coast to Bird Rock and return to New Quay through Penrhyn Farm.
A walk from the car park of the Crown Inn at Llwyndafydd - once the meeting place of the Cilie poets - children of Jeremiah and Mary Jones. After you’ve explored the caves and pebble beach of Cwmtydu, follow the Wales Coast Path with the sea to your left to climb up the cliffs. You’ll pass the clifftop remains of Castell Bach Iron Age fort before dropping down into Cwm Silio at the mouth of the River Soden.
A relaxing walk offering some fine views of New Quay and Llanina Point. Best taken when the tide is low enough to return along the beach.
Beach information obtained from: Wales & Somerset Beach Guide | The Ultimate Guide to Every Beach and Cove in Wales and Somerset