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Hidden Gems

Pembrokeshire offers something for everyone, and quite a few pleasant surprises….once you know the county, you will find all manner of activities and locations tucked away, often well away from the tourist trail.  With a combined family presence in Pembrokeshire of over 300 years and three generations, we’ve established some favourite things to do over the years.  Here we’ve listed some of our very favourite locations and activities for everyone from retired couples to large families:

Beaches

‘The Glen Beach BBQ’ – nestled between the site and Saundersfoot, the Glen is a busy and popular beach.  With lots of sand and more rockpools than your children can get round in a day, it’s a fantastic place for kids.  However, if you time the tide correctly then you can have a very special experience.  In mid summer with a high tide of about 7 o’clock, you’ll find that by 4 most holidaymakers are heading home, and the Western part of the beach is cut off by the tide…and that’s exactly the place to be.  Access is simple from the nearby car park, but you will almost always find yourselves with your own private beach, plenty of afternoon sun remaining and a perfect location to have a barbecue. Sitting in the early evening sun, relaxing and listening to the gentle lapping of the waves on the beach make for a truly memorable experience.

‘The Monkstone day trip’ – There is a local maxim that you have to earn a good beach, and Monkstone is the perfect example of this. There is no vehicle access, and hiking in involves a little bit of effort with a ten minute walk and a steep path, which serves to put a great number of people off.  For those willing to make this effort, Monkstone rewards you with one of the best beaches in the area.  Never crowded, the beach has a wild feel about it that children will love, and with a huge expanse of sand during most of the tide and what we would term ‘proper’ rockpools, there is nothing better than packing a ball, a net, some kindling and a frying pan and making the trek. With the day spent playing games on the beach and foraging, and the early evening cooking your finds using some of the plentiful driftwood, you will often find yourselves with a huge expanse of beach all to yourself and not an ice cream van in sight….if you want to feel connected to nature, this is the way to do it!

Food

Ultracomida – Narberth is fast becoming the cultural capital of Pembrokeshire, with a fantastic selection of shops and cafe’s.  Nestled in the high street is Ultracomida, a Spanish delicatessen. With genuine imported meats and cheeses together with the best of the local produce it is a superb place to buy food.  The best part of the shop however is hidden at the back, a small tapas restaurant where they cook and serve the produce on sale.  Welcoming to children and following the tradition of seating mixed parties around large tables it is a fantastic place to eat and meet people.  The food is superb and the atmosphere incredibly relaxed….for a long, lazy lunch you’ll find it very hard to beat.

Quayside Tearoom, Lawrenny – Situated on the  Daugleddau estuary a 25 minute drive away, the Quayside tearoom is an unobtrusive building on the edge of the water in one of the most serene spots in the county.  Worth a visit just to sit and absorb the tranquility of what is known historically as ‘the secret waterway’, your experience will be immensely enhanced by a visit to what is consistently one of the best places to eat in the area.  Having twice won the best cafe/tearoom in Wales, Quayside prides itself in offering the very best local produce superbly cooked; with six or seven blackboard specials on offer every day using local seasonal produce, it offers some of the best Pembrokeshire food in one of the best locations.

Activities

Skomer, Ramsey and St Davids – Based in St Davids, the smallest city in the UK and well worth a day trip in its own right, the thousand islands expedition offers a fantastic way to see the marine wildlife in Pembrokeshire up close.  Operating in the RSPB nature reserves of Skomer and Ramsey islands, and in some of the most dramatic scenery on offer, you have the choice of either a 500hp jet boat trip or a more sedate fishing boat trip; either way this trip will showcase the scenery and wildlife of the area.  Additionally, the Dale Princess operates from Martins Haven and runs trips to Skomer Island, allowing you to land and see the incredible flora and bird life – half the worlds population of Manx Shearwater live on the island, together with the largest puffin colony in Southern UK.  It is also possible to stay overnight on the island, and although this is limited to 16 people it offers a truly unique experience. 

Get in touch

Our family would love to welcome your family to SWALLOWTREE. Come and enjoy our unique location, superb indoor facilities and high-quality accommodation with delightful sea views. We look forward to seeing you soon.

The Hancock Family