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10 things to do in Swansea Bay this summer

With its captivating coastline, rugged landscape and fascinating history, Swansea Bay can offer relaxing seaside breaks, cultural weekends or the opportunity to try a new activity like stand-up paddleboarding.

A view of Rhossili Bay near Swansea
A view of Rhossili Bay near Swansea: the first place in the UK to be designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty

Whether you’re an avid walker, keen to try glamping for the first time, live for surfing or are simply a sucker for relaxing on the beach, you can do it all in Swansea Bay. Here are eight things you can do in Swansea Bay, Mumbles and Gower this summer and why you should make it your next staycation destination.

1. Discover one of Britain's best beaches, Rhossili Bay

Build a sandcastle, try your hand at kayaking or coasteering, or just sit, relax and take in the breath-taking views of Rhossili Bay. With three miles of unspoilt sand and sea, you’ll quickly understand why Rhossili Bay has been included within Britain’s top ten beaches round-up for six consecutive years (as voted for in the TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice Awards). Rhossili sits at the westernmost point of the Gower Peninsula, which was itself the first place in the UK to be designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

2. Try glamping in Gower

Perfect for first-timers and seasoned glamping pros, Seren Retreat’s luxury yurts offer the ultimate glamping experience to get you back to nature. Set in a private meadow surrounded by an ancient oak forest in serene surroundings, Seren Retreat’s yurts include a wood burning stove, kitchenette and pure spring water on tap from a nearby stream source.

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3. Hit the waves

Swansea Bay is known for its abundance of beautiful beaches, perfect for donning a wetsuit and trying your hand at surfing. Head to Caswell Bay to find Gower Surfing, a fully licensed surf school in Swansea Bay, which offers group lessons, family experiences or one-to-one teaching, to suit all levels of abilities. Of course, if surfing isn’t for you then Swansea Bay is well-equipped with a variety of other activities including stand-up paddle boarding, sea kayaking and kitesurfing.

Gower Surfing opens all year-round subject to weather conditions. Surf lessons start from £35pp.

A beginner surfer rides the waves at Swansea Bay

4. Walk the Welsh coastline

With a path that wraps around the entire coastal border of Wales, it’s fair to say the walking routes in Gower and Swansea Bay are not to be missed. With a range of distances and a mix of terrains, Swansea Bay walking routes offer a little bit of everything from clifftops, sandy beaches, waterfront and woodland. For a variety of sceneries, try the Oxwich Point walk which will take you along one of Gower’s most dramatic headlands, through sunlight dappled woods and across wild open cliffs, ranging between 3.5 miles to 4.5 miles in distance…depending on how energetic you’re feeling!

5. Make a day of it in Mumbles

Mumbles is a cosy and cosmopolitan coastal town, recognised as one of Dylan Thomas’ many stomping grounds and considered the gateway to Gower. There is so much to see and do in Mumbles it’s easy to spend a day exploring here – you’ll find independent boutiques and quirky galleries, picturesque walking and cycling routes along the promenade and lots of great places for a bite to eat including Bistrot Pierre.

Coastal view of Mumbles in Swansea Bay

6. Indulge in a world-class ice cream

Swansea Bay has a reputation for founding incredible ice cream producers, one of which being Verdi’s, located at the end of the Mumbles promenade overlooking Swansea Bay. Try one of their ice cream sundaes – you won’t regret it.

7. Take a tour of Oystermouth Castle

Oystermouth Castle sits majestically on a hill in Mumbles, boasting sweeping and spectacular views of Swansea Bay. With an exciting history, Oystermouth Castle includes ancient graffiti art from the 14th century, a medieval maze of deep vaults and secret staircases, as well as a 30-foot-high glass bridge.

Oystermouth Castle is open now until Sunday 30 September 2018, from 11am – 5pm. Standard entry £3.50. Family ticket (two adults, two children) £9.50.

Oystermouth Castle at Mumbles, Swansea

8. Go on a foodie tour of Swansea Bay

Visitors to Swansea Bay will quite simply be spoilt for choice when it comes to eating out in the area. Swansea Bay boasts a range of historical pubs such as Reynoldston’s King Arthur Hotel and Llangennith’s Kings’ Head, both serving classic and seasonal dishes with produce sourced locally. But for restaurant food with a side of 360-degree views of Swansea Bay, head to the Grape & Olive which can be found at the top of the Meridian Tower in Swansea. With floor to ceiling glass windows, this restaurant offers much more than great food and on a clear day you’ll have views right across the bay.

9. Experience Wales' largest waterpark

If the weather isn’t on your side (let’s face it, we can’t always rely on British weather even in the summer) or you’re looking for a day out with family, Wales’ largest waterpark LC2 based in the heart of Swansea features an exciting network of pools, rides and slides under one roof. From wave pools, rollercoaster slides to surf simulators, the LC2 is guaranteed to keep the family entertained for hours. Of course, if it’s relaxation you’re after, head to the luxury spa to unwind in the sauna and steam room.

Entry during summer months is £7 for adults and £5.50 for juniors (4-15 yrs).

Girl surfs a wave at LC2 indoor waterpark in Swansea Bay

10. Step into the life and times of Swansea’s most famous son, Dylan Thomas

You haven’t experienced the cultural offering of Swansea Bay until you’ve learnt about playwright and poet Dylan Thomas, arguably the region’s most famous export. Have a tour and stay overnight in Dylan’s birthplace, 5 Cwmdonkin Drive, fully restored to its 1914 condition. Immerse yourself in Dylan’s early life in the house where one of the most celebrated poets and writers of the 20th century was born, spent the first 23 years of his life and first put pen to paper.

Guided tours £8 per adult, £6 concession. Overnight stay starts at £150 for two people.

For more information on Swansea Bay, Mumbles and Gower go to #SeaSwanseaBay


The opinions expressed are those of the author and are not held by Saga unless specifically stated. The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal, medical or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Always obtain independent, professional advice for your own particular situation.