Bring out the adventurer inside of you by exploring some of the epic Welsh caves. Big, small, tall, short, wide or narrow, you’ll discover all sorts of caves along the incredible coastline of the county.
There are hundreds, if not thousands, of sea caves in Wales – you just need to know where to look and be careful of tide times. Here are some suggestions on where to start.
Pwll Y Wrach/Witches’ Cauldron, Moylegrove (North West Pembrokeshire)
Hubble, bubble, smashing waves and rubble! The Witches’ Cauldron (Pwll Y Wrach) is a collapsed cave near Moylegrove. It’s a crater in a hill filled with greeny-blue water, formed where sea waters have eroded soft rocks along a fault. The Wales Coast Path here has a walk that goes right to it. Park at Ceibwr Bay, then head south west along the Wales Coast Path that winds along the edges of the sea-neighbouring cliffs. Keep on this path for about 700m and you'll arrive above the dramatic cave formations that form Pwll y Wrach (Witches’ Cauldron). Keep an eye out for daredevil canoeists weaving through the coves, swooping chough and bathing seals.
Porthmynawyd, St Brides Bay (Mid Pembrokeshire)
If you’re keen on combining your cave-finding with a swim, head to Porthmynawyd at St Brides Bay. It sits between Solva (a small harbour) and Newgale (a long, vast beach) in the heart of Pembrokeshire, two beautiful spots in their own right. There's a footpath from Pointz Castle farm, which takes you to the beach via fields (stay right in the first and left in the second) and a deep green valley. When you arrive on the beach, you'll see it is backed by high cliffs. The cave is on the east side, but only head down in low tide.
The quiet beach of Cwmtydu was once the favourite hiding place of brandy and salt smugglers, but now it's the breeding ground for hundreds of seals every year. There are multiple caves and dark holes in the rocks around the beach. Many of them can be explored from the beach when the tide is out.
Dinas Bach and Dinas Fawr, Llyn Peninsula (Gwynedd)
When you look up caves in North Wales, you'll find lots of talk of slate caves and repurposed quarries. However, there are plenty of sea caves to explore in North Wales, too, with these two areas providing perfect examples. At the junction between the Llyn Peninsula's rocky coast and its moorland is a series of coves. A cliff walk to the south of the National Trust café at Porth Oer (Whistling Sands) leads to the island headlands of Dinas Bach and Dinas Fawr. Both of these have small sea caves that can be seen and walked to when the tide is out.
Ogmore-by-Sea, St Brides Major (Vale of Glamorgan)
Ogmore-by-Sea a village in St Brides Major reportedly takes its name from the Welsh word ‘ogof’, meaning ‘cave’, due to the caves that lie near the mouth of the River Ogmore. It makes sense, then, for there to be some cool sea caves of South Wales to explore along the coastline. While there are holes dotted around the rocky reaches, you can see deeper caves and secluded coves if you head below Brig Y Don Hill. Remember to take care with the tide!
Bacon Hole, near Southgate (Gower Peninsula)
This is one of the biggest and best-known caves in the Gower. The entrance is a staggering 20m wide, and brave candidates can walk well into it before it gets too tight. Its name, Bacon Hole comes from the dark streaks of red oxide minerals found on the rocks in an offshoot of the cave, which resembled the colour of bacon. In the winter, it is occupied by horseshoe bats. On a map, it’s west of the headland at the west side of Hunt's Bay. To visit it yourself, find the roundabout in Southgate and head east along the single-track road to the sea, which eventually leads to a steep and narrow descent to the entrance.
And don't forget to keep safe and have fun!
Lydstep Caverns, Manorbier (South East Pembrokeshire)
Weave in and out of rocky doorways at Lydstep Caverns, an area that often plays home to chough, gulls, porpoises and dolphins. The caverns are only accessible at low tide, so check the times before you head off. Park near Lydstep Beach Holiday Village (there’s a patch of dusty land south of it, which is the Lydstep Head car park). On foot, face south and walk to the right-hand corner of the car park, where you will descend roughly 100 steps. Keep going south on this path to get to Lydstep Caverns.