We’ve rounded the bend. Wales has suddenly turned a fuller shade of green to signal that summer is near. It’s time to get outdoors…even more.
An extra incentive is that the Big Welsh Walk has kicked off, and the country is also celebrating the second birthday of the Wales Coast Path. To mark the occasion I gathered with eight other Wales ‘perimeteers’ to walk along the Gower peninsula. It’s one of the most stunning places in Wales and I like to think in the UK as well. A fair assessment considering it was the first place to be designated as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
We were an interesting bunch gathered at Oxwich car park. People of different ages and from all over the UK, some beyond. Each of us with our own self appointed title: youngest to have walked the path (yours truly- clutching at straws), first to walk the path, first to run, first Brazilian to walk the path. I think Rosie might hold that title for a while.
We set off from Oxwich Bay on the Gower’s southern coast, to walk down to the peninsula’s point at Worm’s Head, Rhossili. A journey of around 12 miles.
I was tasked with choosing what part of Wales we would head to for the get together and it was easy to decide. Gower has some of the best coastal walking around and on top of that it’s not far from the M4 so it’s very easy to find.
This unusual peninsula is the kind of place that is spectacular whether looking out to sea or looking inland. Although described to be in the Bristol Channel, it’s far enough west to seem like a finger stuck out into the wild Atlantic. As such, the sea is often furious and the coastline rough and torn in places. Further from the water’s edge, rocky outcrops continue inland, at times enclosing you against the sea. Yet despite it’s rugged form it is bright with colour: with grass creeping up the cliffs, the yellow and green of gorse bushes, bluebells and the occasional wild orchid.
The route between Oxwich and Rhossili, is picturesque and fascinating enough, but it is this view, (below) that’s the most awe-inspiring.
The beauty of Rhossili beach is that despite it’s popularity (particularly recently), it still manages to appear empty, wild and untainted. I will admit that behind the camera is a pub….but that doesn’t hurt too much.
Getting to the Gower:
Here’s a handy guide to getting there from various places near and far
Want to explore more of the Welsh coast?
See my six other recommended sections here