West Wales Road Trip: A Spectacular Scenic Adventure

Take the ultimate road trip through West Wales, a journey filled with unforgettable scenery.


West Wales is a spectacular destination that offers visitors the opportunity to explore its natural beauty. A road trip through this part of Wales is a great way to immerse oneself in the scenic countryside, picturesque villages, and rugged coastline. You may never have considered a trip to Wales? Let us help you with your planning, we can guarantee you will fall in love with it.

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Planning a West Wales Road Trip

Timing is everything when planning a road trip to West Wales. The best time to visit is from May to September when the weather is warm, and the days are longer. In our opinion, these roads are best enjoyed from behind the wheel of your own vehicle. Whether car or motorhome.
Packing for a road trip in West Wales requires a mix of clothing. Take items suitable for both warm and cool weather, comfortable shoes, and rain gear. The recommended route for a West Wales road trip includes driving along the coastal road from St. David’s to Cardigan Bay. However, West Wales doesn’t stop at Cardigan Bay. Make time to consider a longer trip. How about doing a 500 mile circular route? Taking in the delights of the Llyn Peninsular in North Wales, the Castles of the North and Anglesey. Then down the centre or ‘Spine’ of Wales. Combining this article with the information provided in our other articles on ShortBreaksaway about Wales, we aim to give you all the tools you need to have a fabulous time on your Road Trip.

Road Trip Wales Guide Book

Road Trip Wales – the ultimate ‘No Fuss’ Wales guidebook by Robbie Roams. Featuring incredible locations, practical tips and stress-saving hacks to ensure your Welsh Road Trip is simply unforgettable. This in-depth guidebook has everything you could possibly need to plan your Wales road trip. From Wales itineraries to budgeting and accommodation. You’ll have an incredible experience on one of the UK’s best-kept secrets!

Best Places to Visit

Pembrokeshire is one of the best places to visit on a trip down the West Coast of Wales. But in your hurry don’t just dash through Carmarthenshire. Often utilised only as a route to get to Pembrokeshire. This is an amazing county with some fantastic coastline and award-winning beaches. Carmarthenshire is also home to the National Botanical Gardens of Wales. The extraordinary domed greenhouse at its centre creates a subtropical garden of non-indigenous plants. Fabulous all year round (free to enter in the winter). It’s also a great option for those days when the sun doesn’t make an appearance. Any short list of locations should also Snowdonia National Park. This is a vast National Park stretching from central Wales to the coast, with its majestic mountains and scenic walks.

Best Beaches to Visit on a West Wales Road Trip

The Coastal Way

There are just too many examples of gorgeous beaches in West Wales. We could probably make a list, but you should make your own discoveries. What we will try and do is ensure that we touch on as many beaches in our Wales articles.

Gems like Barafundle Bay, a secluded beach, known for its crystal-clear waters and golden sand. Whitesands Bay and Freshwater East are both ideal for surfing and other water sports. Just a tiny selection of a huge number! Looking for a hidden gem? Try Mwnt Beach, surrounded by lush greenery, helping an escape from the crowds. Be careful you don’t miss other gems on the way.

Such as Llansteffan with its acres of sand and a castle on the hill.

Visiting Llansteffan: A Coastal Haven of History and Natural Beauty

Situated on the scenic shores of Carmarthen Bay, Llansteffan offers a captivating blend of rich history and breathtaking natural wonders. With its prominent feature, Llansteffan Castle, overlooking the village, and the allure of Llansteffan beach, these hidden gem beckons travellers seeking a unique destination.

Stepping foot into Llansteffan is like stepping back in time. The commanding presence of Llansteffan Castle, perched atop a hill, immediately captures one’s attention. Dating back to the 12th century, this formidable structure, built by the Normans, showcases its medieval grandeur and affords visitors panoramic vistas of the surrounding countryside and the azure waters of the bay. Although a ruin the castle is free to enter, and you can ascend some of the staircases for a stunning view. I have even been to a wedding ceremony in the castle ground.

Wandering along the quaint streets of the village, visitors can soak in the ambience of a bygone era. The charming cottages and the picturesque church exude a sense of timeless tranquillity. One cannot help but be captivated by the village’s unique charm.

Llansteffan Beach, nestled below the castle’s towering presence, unveils a pristine stretch of golden sand kissed by the rolling waves. Nature enthusiasts and leisure seekers alike find solace in the coastal serenity. Whether strolling along the shoreline, building sandcastles, or indulging in a refreshing swim, the beach offers endless opportunities for relaxation and rejuvenation.

Nature enthusiasts will be delighted by the coastal path that winds its way along the rugged cliffs surrounding Llansteffan. The path rewards intrepid hikers with breathtaking vistas of the bay, the lush countryside, and, if fortunate, glimpses of native wildlife.

Llansteffan is a destination that weaves history, nature, and tranquillity into a tapestry of unforgettable experiences. Whether exploring the ancient walls of Llansteffan Castle, basking in the sun-kissed splendour of Llansteffan beach, or devouring fish and chips or ice cream, this coastal haven offers an idyllic retreat for those seeking respite from the modern world.

It also happens to be one of our favourite beaches for exercising the dog!

There’s just so much choice so planning is key.

Best Hikes and Walks

One of the most popular walks in West Wales is the Pembrokeshire Coast Path. Stretching 186 miles along the coast. (There is a very helpful bus which helps!) The Preseli Hills Walk boasts a range of landscapes, from open moorland to forested valleys. There are ideas to help you get started here

Best Castles and Historical Sites on a West Wales Road Trip

One of the Largest Castles in Wales Pembroke Castle

A West Wales road trip wouldn’t be complete without a visit to some of the region’s magnificent castles and historical sites. From Pembroke Castle, in the South (one of the most famous castles in West Wales, the birthplace of Henry VII). To Caernarfon Castle, in the North (a UNESCO World Heritage site. The site of the Crowning of King Charles when he was the younger Prince of Wales). Raglan Castle, Laugharne Castle, and Cilgerran Castle are also must-visit locations for history buffs.

Best Towns and Villages to Visit

West Wales is home to many charming towns and villages, each with its unique character and attractions.

Tenby is a picturesque seaside town, famous for its colourful houses, sandy beaches, and charming harbour. It is however always bustling in the Summer.

If heaving crowds are not your thing, then on the South Coast try Laugharne, Stackpole or Solva instead.

Three Cliffs Bay

In the Gower Peninsular, you could easily spend a week exploring. This small spit of land with its wonderful villages and beaches is often missed as adventurers rush down the M4.

St. David’s is a small city home to Wales’s oldest cathedral and a range of boutique shops and cafes. See Things to do in St Davids: Britain’s Smallest City. Heading north from St Davids there is also no shortage of wonderful villages. We have tried to capture the essence of what to visit in our article on the Coastal Way.

Best Food and Drink

Welsh Cider on the West Wales Road Trip

You will find some traditional Welsh foods on your travels – give them a try!

  • Welsh cakes are traditional scone-like cake/pastry that is made from butter, sugar, and flour and served with jam and cream.
  • Bara brith is a fruitcake that is soaked in tea and served with butter.
  • Cockles and laverbread is a popular Welsh dish that consists of cockles and seaweed that are cooked together.
  • Welsh rarebit is a classic Welsh dish. It is made from melted cheese and beer and served on toasted bread.
  • Welsh whisky is a must-try for whiskey lovers, with its smooth taste and unique flavour.

Best Adventure Activities

West Wales is a playground for adventure enthusiasts, and there’s no shortage of thrilling activities to enjoy.

Coasteering is popular along the rugged coastline of West Wales. Climbing, swimming, jumping off cliffs and exploring sea caves along the coast.
Surfing is another popular activity that can be enjoyed, with Pembrokeshire offering some of the best waves in the UK.

Kayaking, rock climbing, and zip-lining are other adventure activities that visitors can enjoy. Try the range of activities offered Here

Walking the Preseli Hills Walk is very rewarding. A must-do hike on a West Wales road trip. This walk takes you through the rugged terrain of the Preseli Hills. Offering stunning panoramic views, the walk is approximately 8 miles long and moderately challenging. BBC Wales’ own Weatherman has a whole website dedicated to local works – try looking here for inspiration.

Best Places for Wildlife Spotting on a West Wales Road Trip

West Wales is home to an abundance of wildlife; with several spots for you to get up close and personal with nature. Skomer Island is a must-visit for bird watchers, with puffins being the main attraction. The Pembrokeshire Coast is also a great place to spot seals, dolphins, and porpoises. Snowdonia National Park is another popular spot for wildlife spotting, with red kites and otters being some of the highlights.

Best Places for Stargazing on a West Wales Road Trip

This area has some of the darkest skies in the UK, making it an ideal destination for stargazing. The Pembrokeshire and Snowdonia National Parks are both designated Dark Sky Reserves. Offering excellent opportunities for stargazing. On clear nights expect to see the Milky Way, shooting stars, and even the Northern Lights.


A West Wales road trip offers an unforgettable adventure, with stunning scenery, charming towns, delicious food, and thrilling activities. From hiking in the Preseli Hills to exploring ancient castles, there’s something for everyone on a West Wales road trip. Plan your trip today and experience the magic of this beautiful region for yourself.

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