Things to do in Gower http://www.explore-gower.co.uk/gower-activities Sat, 25 Mar 2017 20:11:23 +0000 Joomla! - Open Source Content Management en-gb Cycling in Gower http://www.explore-gower.co.uk/gower-activities/cycling-in-gower http://www.explore-gower.co.uk/gower-activities/cycling-in-gower

The Gower Peninsula is an undulating countryside of hills and valleys, making much of it quite unsuitable for younger cyclists. The south Gower roads are also crowded with summer traffic during the more popular cycling months which really dictate its suitability to the more experienced bicycle rider only.

That noted, Swansea Council has fully appreciated the desirability of creating a network of cycle paths through the region and, traffic free (except for pedestrians who share all these routes), they offer as rich a variety of routes as available anywhere else in the country.

Cycling on Oxwich Beach

Crofty to Llanrhidian

Another favoured cycle route follows the Burry Estuary, Gower from Crofty to Llanrhidian. Although not a cycle path per se, this is a very quiet, gently curving route taking in a very wide expanse of National Trust managed estuary.

The road is suitable for the whole family to enjoy a day's cycling, though caution should be exercised towards the close of the route at Llanrhidian. Here, the road climbs away from the estuary through a short tract of winding country lane where oncoming traffic should be watched for.

The track offers excellent views towards Llanelli and Carmarthen, the rugged northern coastline of the Gower Peninsula, the distant enigmatic ruins of Weobley Castle and the infinite variety of wildlife associated with this region - particularly heron, stickleback, frog, toad, rabbit and the occasional fox.

The estuary is marked with a myriad of small pools, which, after a retreating tide (which closes the road at high spring tides), contains numerous tiny dog fish and flat fish. Ponies graze the marshland here also and will readily take any food that might be offered to them.

An extended route can also be continued from the top of Llanrhidian by taking the road right from the crossroads. Here you will find the quintessential quiet countryside of north Gower - complete with rural villages and churches and also a couple of castles.

Clyne Valley

Cycling in Clyne Valley

Clyne Valley cycle path can be found about half way around Swansea Bay. The route dissects the quiet woodland of Clyne Valley and continues through Dunvant to the large conurbation of Gowerton. A return journey is approximately 16 km.

Penclawdd

Another fine cycle path can be explored along Penclawdd that tracks the easterly approach of the Burry Estuary and dips through a fine mini woodland. Excellent for very young children.

Cycle Shops near Gower

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stella.elphick@gmail.com (Stella Elphick) Activities Sat, 23 Feb 2013 11:47:58 +0000
Fishing in Gower http://www.explore-gower.co.uk/gower-activities/fishing-in-gower http://www.explore-gower.co.uk/gower-activities/fishing-in-gower

Mumbles

Late summer evenings around high tide, with a bait of crab, sand-eel or rag worm, will often yield good catches of flatfish, mackerel and bass around Knab Rock (an earlier dig along Swansea Bay will result in a plentiful supply of rag-worm for the twilight fish).

Mumbles Pier is another popular fishing haunt, but access here is dependent upon a fee (per rod). The fish here, which include bass and cod, as well as mullet, often group around the pillars of the pier and can sometimes be seen prior to the catch! Rag-worms or simple bread often provide the best lure here.

Fishing in Mumbles

The two Mumbles' islets are yet another popular fishing venue here. Access can be difficult in this area, however, and a keen eye should be kept on the tide. If stranded on the islets, do not attempt to wade back to the mainland as the currents here can be truly treacherous. The best bet is to wait a few hours after high tide and then follow the tide out to the islets. This will allow a good couple of hours of good fishing. Pollack, wrasse, bass and mackerel of decent size can be caught from the islets with a bait of soft crab.

Langland

Langland is a good spot with easy access. The usual catch here is bass.

Caswell

Caswell is a good beach and rock fishing from here to Pwlldu, with peeler crab usually netting ample mackerel, garfish and bass.

Three Cliffs

Bass and mackerel are the easiest catches here and can be fished from Three Cliffs beach itself or from the rocks around here, Pobbles and Tor Bay.

Oxwich

Oxwich is a very popular beach for angling with a very expansive stretch of sand and good parking facilities. Although the beach is well used by anglers, a better catch can usually be gained from the rocks immediately to the fore of Oxwich Church and, especially Oxwich Point. Mackerel, lug-worm or peeler crab should bag you some good sized bass here.

Port Eynon

Bass and mackerel are the usual catch here and are best fished for on the rocks past the ruins of the Port Eynon Salthouse. Peeler crab will probably offer your best chance of a good catch here.

Worm's Head, Rhossili

Worm's Head in Rhossili is a great location for the angler with several good spots for setting up rod. Again, do not attempt to return to the mainland if you are caught out by the incoming tide! For bass, fish towards the south facing side of the Worm.

The north facing aspect of the islet is best fished for mackerel and the occasional bull huss. For bait, try gathering locally from the causeway immediately prior to your session on the Worm.

Fishing at Fall Bay

Llangennith

A very popular beach during the summer evenings but also a good locale for the serious angler. A ready supply of razorfish, crab or lug-worm can bag some decent sized bass and flatfish here.

For mackerel or mullet, the islet of Burry Holmes is the best bet at Llangennith. Watch the tide though! Here soft bait such as crab or mussel is the preferred lure.

Note that the Hillend gates that provide main access here are locked at midnight.

Whiteford Sands

The large expanse of quiet sands at Whiteford offer a multitude of locations to set up rod and line. Flatfish and bass are the usual catches here using lug or rag-worm (which can be dug for locally). At low tide, fishing at the disused lighthouse can result in a good catch of flatfish.

Angling Shops near Gower


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stella.elphick@gmail.com (Stella Elphick) Activities Sat, 23 Feb 2013 12:29:26 +0000
Gower Golf Courses http://www.explore-gower.co.uk/gower-activities/gower-golf-courses http://www.explore-gower.co.uk/gower-activities/gower-golf-courses

Set amongst some of the most awe-inspiring landscapes in the country, it is no suprise that Gower's golf courses are rapidly establishing themselves as firm favourites amongst the UK's golfing fraternity.

Most clubs here will accept visitors as long as they hold membership to their homebased golf club. It is always advisable though to telephone the club you intend to visit before setting off to make sure that they have a space available for you.

Not all of Gower's courses are aimed at the experts, however. The peninsula also has courses for the as yet uninitiated to the sport and for young children also.

Blackpill Golf Course

Narrow and long 9 hole course, sandwiched between Swansea bay and Oystermouth Road. Equipment for hire, no handicap certificate required, ideal for beginners and first-timers.

Clyne Golf Club

Moorland course rising to 600 feet above sea level. 18 holes distancing a total of 6,322 yards. Clubs and trolleys available for hire. Full catering. Handicap certificate required.

Gower Golf Club

Parkland course with views of the Burry Estuary. 18 holes distancing a total of 6,441 yards. Full catering. Handicap certificate required.

Gowerton Golf Range

Excellent for beginners and first-timers with 9 hole crazy golf course, 9 hole par 3 course and an 18 hole pitch and putt course. Perfect family day out.

Langland Bay Golf Course

Parkland course with spectacular coastal views. 18 holes distancing a total of 5,857 yards. Clubs and trolleys available for hire. Full catering. Handicap certificate required.

Pennard Golf Course

A links course with spectular views over Three Cliffs and Oxwich Bay. The ruins of Pennard Castle and church are also sited on this course. 18 holes covering 6,329 yards. Trolleys available for hire. Catering by arrangement. Handicap certificate required.

Singleton Boating Lake

Small crazy golf course amidst other family entertainment, eg boating lake and public house.

Southend Park

Crazy golf fo all the family.

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stella.elphick@gmail.com (Stella Elphick) Activities Sat, 23 Feb 2013 11:17:45 +0000
Gower Rock Climbing http://www.explore-gower.co.uk/gower-activities/rock-climbing http://www.explore-gower.co.uk/gower-activities/rock-climbing

Rock climbing on the Gower Peninsula remains a very sensitive issue. Whilst the rough limestone coast here is a natural draw to climbers, the practice of bolting the rock they climb has been the cause of some very serious consternation. Whilst many bolts have been removed, this does leave the rocks looking very scarred.

There is also the issue of damaging cliff vegetation and of disturbing nesting seabirds in the area, all of which are legitimate worries and ones that often bring climbers and conservation groups to heated debate. Whether this sport causes as much environmental damage as the building of sports fields or cycle paths, or even footpaths, is a question that could be argued by climbers to support an argument that theirs is a pastime which is unfairly treated.

The controversy of bolting notwithstanding, the peninsula does afford the climber with some breathtaking assaults. Please ensure that permission from the relevant landowner is gained before attempting any of these climbs, however, and be respectful of all indigenous life.

Pennard Cliffs

Pennard Cliffs offers rich pickings to the rock climber. Its three main sites are:

  • Pennard Buttress - 23 climbing routes ranging from difficult to extremely severe.
  • High Pennard - offering some truly awesome climbs.
  • Gravesend Wall - situated above High Pennard with nearly 30 more climbing routes.

Three Cliffs and Tor Bay

This stretch of limestone coast offers some of Gower's more splendid vistas for the climber.  

Three Cliffs is Gower's second greatest natural feature, after Worm's Head. With well over 20 separate climbs available on this rock it is also one of the most popular climbing regions on the peninsula. Climbs here are rated difficult and higher.

Three Cliffs' most popular climbing route called Scavenger, rated as very severe, is one of the few routes in Gower whose rocks have become quite polished from overuse.

Tor Bay has a variety of crags, the more important ones being Great Tor and Little Tor. Most of these climbs range from very difficult and higher.

Port Eynon

The cliffs west of Port Eynon offer the best coastline scenery in Gower and the climber with a great range of routes.

Boiler Slab is perhaps the best known crag of this limestone region as it hosts up to 15 separate climbs. These range from one of Gower's easiest climbs, called Classic, to an extremely severe route, named Middle Age Dread.

Rhossili and Fall Bay

There are several good climbs at Rhossili.

  • Trial Wall, Rhossili Bay - a number of climbs ranging from very severe to extremely severe.
  • Sheepbone Wall - accessible for only 2 hours each side of low tide, has a range of climbs from difficult to extremely severe.
  • Fall Bay Buttress, Fall Bay - a couple of very severe climbs.
  • Lewes Castle East, Fall Bay - some very popular severe climbs.
  • King Wall - a large slab of rock beneath Lewes Castle East, has numerous climbing routes that are very popular with new and advanced climbers alike.
  • Giant's Caves Crag, east of Fall Bay - some extremely severe routes.
  • Yellow Wall Crag, further east again - by far the most difficult crag of the area.  Yellow Wall Crag' must not be climbed between March 1st and August 14th of each year because of nesting Choughs.
  • Great Deirdre - probably Rhossili's best location with climbs rated extremely severe.

Paviland Cliffs

Paviland offers good, if rather difficult, climbing. These rate from a minimum of hard, severe and get a lot, lot harder.

  • Paviland Main Cliff - close to Paviland Cave, mostly slabby but with an abrupt overhang at 2/3 height.
  • Juniper Wall - has a good climb titled Assassin, rated hard, very severe.

North Gower

Not the richest pickings for the adventurous climber, north Gower does, however, possess a few noteworthy challenges. The crag at Whiteford Sands and Nottle Hill Tor (overlooking the Burry Estuary at Llanmadoc) are the two main climbing opportunities here and both are worthy of an afternoon's endeavour.

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stella.elphick@gmail.com (Stella Elphick) Activities Sat, 23 Feb 2013 13:33:10 +0000
Surfing and Windsurfing http://www.explore-gower.co.uk/gower-activities/surfing-and-windsurfing http://www.explore-gower.co.uk/gower-activities/surfing-and-windsurfing

With its numerous beaches and secret reefs, Gower is considered to be the base for surfing in Wales.

Surf the Atlantic rollers at Rhossili

  • Swansea Bay is an excellent place for the experienced windsurfer and the beginner alike.
  • Langland is best surfed at low to mid tide but can become crowded, especially during winter months. Popular amongst enthusiasts here is the Crab Island wave.
  • Caswell is another crowded bay and, because of its smaller waves than Langland is more ideally suited for beginners. Here, mid to high tides produce the best conditions for the sport. The sea at Caswell also produces ideal conditions for windsurfing.
  • Oxwich is another favoured locale for the windsurfer as it is suitable to sail here at most tides. At high tide, the bay produces quite a large swell for surfboarding.
  • Port Eynon (and Horton) are not the ideal spots for the beginner as the area has some of the most challenging waves on the peninsula. Windsurfing is also popular here, but is again only advisable for the more adept at the sport.
  • Heading west from Port Eynon, the coast from here to Rhossili has numerous reef breaks. None of these are suitable for beginners, however.
  • There are two further reef breaks at Mewslade. This bay can only be surfed at low tide though.
  • Rhossili is only really surfable at high tide, but the northern half of the bay, known as Llangennith Sands, is the best known area for surfing in Wales. Surfable at all stages of the tide, Llangennith is the first place on the peninsula to pick up the swell. Although very popular, the size of this bay ensures that the waves never get too crowded.
  • Broughton Bay is the last bay in Gower that is suitable for surfing. The sea here is only for the more experienced however, as the bay produces the longest waves in the whole of Wales.

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Gower Surf Shops and Schools


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stella.elphick@gmail.com (Stella Elphick) Activities Sat, 23 Feb 2013 10:05:08 +0000