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Wales Coast Path : Mumbles to Three Cliffs Bay (Southgate) Walk

Gower coast path via Mumbles Head, Langland bay, Caswell bay, Brandy Cove and Pwlldu bay.

Length 12.5 miles ( 20 km) with 1,500 ft (450 meters) of ascent. Less in practise as you will be able to use many of the (not high tide) routes. Option to split the walk into 2 stages for winter, or more sunbathing time
Toughness 5/10. Very well maintained paths or firm sand. A long day though.
Map OS Explorer 164 Gower
Features

This coast walk (part of the Gower and Wales Coast Paths) is a mix of cliff paths and beaches. It includes Swansea Bay, Mumbles, a mix of hidden and popular beaches, together with the spectacular Three Cliffs and Oxwich bays. The routes includes low tide (beach) and high tide (cliff path) alternatives, so you'll find it much easier than the high tide figure quoted above. There are many cafes along the way, not to mention places to swim, ruined castles, and photographs to be taken, so there is an option to split the walk in 2 more liesurely stages. There are a couple of extensions as well.

The walk starts in the village of Mumbles (ruined castle, pier, hill with viewpoint) on a regular bus route from Swansea. It follows the promenade (2 km) around the bay to the Mumbles (the 2 small islands silhouetted against the horizon at the end of the bay) and the pier. There's an optional climb of Mumbles hill (77m) for a stunning view of the bay, and across the channel to Somerset and Devon.

Its a gentle path to Bracelet and Limeslade bays, before joining the cliff path proper to Langland (2.5 km) (bus, cafe)

Cross the beach - the 2 bays are joined at low tide, or follow the path around at high tide, around the headland to Caswell Bay (2km) (bus, cafe)

Take a shortcut across the sand (or the cliff path at high tide) to Brandy Cove (1.5 km)

The path is now more remote, next is Pwlldu Bay, which has no road access (2 km).

There is 5 km of gentle cliff top path past Southgate (bus, cafe)

As you round the corner, you can see the spectacular Three Cliffs bay - its a valley which is flooded at high tide. At low tide, walk across the beach, at high tide you have to go inland for the stepping stones

Its a 1.5 km walk inland along the valley to Parkmill - hwere there's a bus stop, and a pub to wait in

To continue, either walk around the headland (low tide), or over it (high tide) to Great Tor bay, and the spectacular Oxwich bay (a long sandy beach backed by sand dunes). Choose your own private sand dune hill for lunch or a sunbathe

At the far end of the beach, it your destination, the Oxwich Bay hotel, and the bus stop back to Swansea.

Optionally, walk out around the headland, and back over the top, past the ruined castle

You don't really need a map for this walk - just follow the coast, but its very useful. The OS Explorer Gower map is highly recommended.

Day Walk

Mumbles to Oxwich

This walk can be combined with the Mummbles - Pennard coast walk to make a longer (12 mile) summer walk from Mummbles all the way to Oxwich. The walk was split in 2 to make it an easy winter walk, and to give you time to swim, sunbathe, or explore

Car driver need to add on a 3 mile extension along a disused railway line path, from Kilay to the coast at Black Pill, then along the seafront to Mummbles to return to their car - making a 15 miles walk. Alternatively, you can circulate via Swansea.

Options

Car drivers can park for free at Black Pill (on the Swansea Bay coast), then walk 2.5km along the sea front path to Mumbles to start the walk. Black Pill is on the Swansea - Southgate bus route.

You can add the extension around Oxwich Head

Car drivers can park at Killay (on the Swansea-Parkmill-Oxwich bus route), and walk down a disused railway path to the coast, then along the sea-front to Mumbles

Mumbles to Blackpill : about 8 miles

Blackpill to Oxwich : about 5 miles

For car drivers, Killay to Mumbles : 3.6 miles, gentle downhill or flat

For long walkers, Oxwich headland : 3.2 miles, great views, 1 small climb

Travel

By bus. Take a bus from Swansea bus station to Mumblea ('Oystermouth' on bus timetables). You can return to Swansea from Langland, Caswell, Southgate, Parkmill, or Oxwich. NB on Mon-Sat, you might have to change buses from Oxwich - its a timetabled connection though.

By car, its a little more complex.

Buses from Langland and Caswell return to Mumbles

Buses from Southgate travel via a different route (the B4436), and join the coast road at Blackpill about 2km north of Mumbles - an easy walk along the sea path

Buses from Oxwich and Blackpill travel along the A4188, passing through Killay. You have 2 choices - go all the way into Swansea, and back out again. Alternatively, you can get of in Killay (at the bottom of the hill), and follow a disused railway line path to Blackpill, then back along the coast - this does make for a long day though

Eat

Before that start, on the optional start in Killay, there is the West Cross Inn on the seafront path, a mile or so before Mumbles. Great bay view, but its more of a food place though

Mumbles has many places, there are 2 small supermarkets in the town centre, and the White Rose pub which has good and bad days. Highly rcommended though, at Knab Rock, about 1km after the town centre, is Verdi's, verdis-cafe.co.uk, a large Italian cafe right on the seafront with outside tables

There is a pub in the amusements complex by the pier

Bracelet Bay has Castellamare, castellamare.co.uk, another large Italian bar restaurant

Langland has the Surfside Cafe (small cafe, on the sea wall)

Caswell has Calcutts, a great Cafe (small, nice spot for breakfast)

Southgate has Threecliff threecliffs.co.uk, a cafe - deli

Inland, Parkmill has The Gower Inn, thegowerinnswansea.co.uk, a great place to wait for your bus

Finally, Oxwich Bay has The Oxwich Bay Hotel, oxwichbayhotel.co.uk, with a fine pub to await your bus.

Gower Walks

Clockwise from Swansea - Gower's beaches are exceptional - there really are this many 5 star walk here!

If you want to do the Gower Coast Path

  • Swansea town centre along the promenade to Mumbles is easy enough.
  • Then Mumbles to Three Cliffs and Three Cliffs to Oxwich can be done in 1 go.
  • Next you can combine (Oxwich Bay to) Port Eynon to Rhossili with Rhossili via Llangennith Circular (but finish in Llangennith. There are rare Oxwich - Llangenniith buses.
  • Then choose the Llanmadoc to Llangennith option of the Llanmadoc via Whiteford Sands Circular
  • Finaly, Llanmadoc to Gowerton
Get There

The nearest train station is Swansea.

London Paddington to Swansea : 3 hours, £80 off peak return. 'Advance' tickets (no changes) from £20 single. A good compromise is "Advance" out, and an (Open) "Single" back - about £60.

London Waterloo via Salibury and Bath - £60 off peak return. Much longer. Cheap advance tickets on the few direct trains per day.

Megabus (London to Swansea from £6 single) coach and National Express coach is another option.

Driving to Swansea takes about 3 hours from London. The Seven bridge costs £6.60 to Wales only (free coming back). Its not worth driving around via Gloucester, even if going to the Brecon Beacons. Its a lot longer, and with the extra fuel, you wont save much

Buses

You must check the bus times beforehand - using traveline.cymru/ Why? Because times and routes vary on school days, not school days, weekdays, Saturday, Sunday, summer, winter... It might be efficient, but its confounding for visitors.

Updated Summer 2016

Swansea bus station is about 15 mins walk from the train station. From there, 2 companies run buses to Gower, with a bizarre obfuscated schedule.

There is a 'Go Gower' day pass for £5.40, valid on both companies.

Notes. The Mummbles official name is Oystermouth, they are the same place. Swansea, Black Pill and Mummbles are on Swansea Bay.

Current routes are

#2 / 2B / #2C Swansea - Black Pill (bay) - Mumbles (bay) - Rotherslade (beach) - #2C continues to Caswell (beach)~ 30 mins
#14 / #114 Swansea - Black Pill (bay) - Southgate (for 3 Cliffs Beach)~ 30 mins
#117 / #118 (Mon-Sat)South Gower : Swansea - Killay (for disused railway line) - Parkmill (1km inland from 3 Cliffs beach) - (#117 via Oxwich beach) - Port Eynon (beach) - Rhosilli (south end of the beach)~ 60 mins
#114 (Sunday) South Gower : Swansea - Black Pill (bay) - Southgate (for 3 Cliffs Beach) - Parkmill (1km inland from 3 Cliffs beach) - Oxwich (beach) - Port Eynon (beach) - Rhosilli (south end of the beach)~ 60 mins
#116 North Gower : Swansea - (sometimes via Llanmadoc for Whitford Sands) - Llangennith (north end of Rhosilli beach)~ 60 mins
#115 Llangennith (north end of Rhossili beach) - Port Eynon (beach)i.e. not to/from Swansea
  • On Sunday, the South Gower bus takes a better route via BlackPill (close to Mumbles) and Southgate (Three Cliffs). Apart from that, the routes don't overlap, so its great for 1 way walks, and to/from Swansea, but bad for to/from Mumbles, and long south coast walks.
  • On Mon-Sat, you sometimes have to change bus to/from Oxwich via a timetabled connection.
  • First Choice - Mumbles routes, and Gower routes on Sunday
  • NAT Gower routes Mon-Sat
  • Swansea Bay Without a Car has online bus departure posters for the main places
Stay

Swansea is the best place for public transport users. The city doesn't have many tourist sites except for Wind Street (pronounced Wine Street, loads of mega pubs) and the marina. Many old seafront B&B's, and mega chain hotels.

Mumbles (Oystermouth) is a pretty seaside village, quieter and more upmarket nowadays as the 'Mumbles mile' pubs are no more. Old B&Bs and boutieque hotels. Swansea's 'latin' quarter.

There is a Youth Hostel in Port Eynon, and a large beach campsite on Rhosilli beach near Llangennith. Also campsites at Three Cliffs. Rhosilli itself would be a great place to stay.

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By Car

Start: Mumbles (Oystermouth) Bus Station, SA3 4AR, Swansea | Directions

Finish: NT Pennard Cliffs Car Park / Southgate bus stop, Gower, SA23 2AS | [Directions]

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Start walking Large print Using GPS data

National Rail: 03457 48 49 50 • Travelline SE (bus times): 0871 200 2233 (12p/min) • TFL (London) : 0343 222 1234

Version

Aug-16

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