Sunday, 7 September 2014

Cycling in West Wales

I've been absent for a couple of weeks on Fat Frocks because I've had a little annual leave and been out exploring some of my favourite parts of the UK. I headed back to West Wales where I had been earlier in the Summer with Martyn but this time we took the bikes. Martyn bought me a bike for my birthday but I had only really had a chance to ride it close to my house so I was looking forward to taking it further afield and trying out some new routes.

digital radio

I'm a big camping convert because Martyn has all the kit and the tent feels like a home from home. Camping at festivals can be grim but we've found a lovely campsite with clean facilities and if I've got a cup of tea and a good book then I'm happy. If you think camping isn't for you I definitely suggest trying it for a weekend. You might surprise yourself and you get the best view when you wake up in the morning if you camp on the coastline like we did. 

The day we arrived we just read, drank tea, attempted to fly a kite and relaxed on the site but the next day we cycled from the site down to Saundersfoot and along the coast. 

A picture of my bike on Saundersfoot beach

The ride was nice and leisurely with minimal traffic which is great for a novice like me. There were some lovely views and we stopped off for fish and chips in the harbour before heading back home.


A picture of Sundersfoot beach

Last time we camped was during the super hot weather and it was around 28-30 degrees but it was a much chillier 18 this time which meant nice cosy nights in with lots of blankets and hot drinks.


On day three we headed out to St David's, stopping off at Newgale on the way to take in the sights. We stopped off at the wonderful information centre in St David's where a helpful volunteer suggested some traffic free cycle routes for us and gave us a few booklets suggesting other routes. It's a great centre with a Dylan Thomas exhibition and a nice cafe and toilets so it's a good place to stop off before you explore the area. 

A photo of Newgale beach


We rode through the high street and down behind the Bishop's Palace. If you ride (or push) your bike up a steep hill behind the ruined palace you will see some cycle route signs which you can follow to Whitesands beach like we did. The path was pretty much traffic free, had some wonderful countryside views and loads of butterflies. I highly recommend this route.

This ride was relatively short at only about 3/4 miles so I wanted to take my bike to a disused airfield to get a bit more cycling in and burn off the ice cream I scoffed in St David's. It is one of several small airfields along the Pembrokeshire coast, and was opened in 1943. Today the runways are gone, and the area has been restored to native heathland. It has some lovely wildlife, good flat paths and a huge runway to go wild on. 

We only saw one other cyclist and a dog walker so we pretty much had the place to ourselves. I felt like I didn't have to worry about traffic or bumping into other people which is just what I need as I build my confidence up. I want to do a lot more road cycling in the future and cycle around cities too so becoming more confident it key. I wore my maroon lace up Vans whilst cycling but I'm thinking I would like something a bit more waterproof like these boots because my Vans will be super soggy if I cycle in the rain. 

A photo of St David's airfield

If you don't have a bike and want to explore West Wales like I did there are some amazing coastal paths for walkers too, head to this site for more information.

Gemma
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10 comments:

  1. West Wales looks so pretty, I'm a massive camping fan it's such great fun :-)

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  2. I don't think I've given camping enough of a chance, especially if you get such lovely views like you did! Glad you've been having a lovely break mrs, a holiday away makes so much difference :) <3 Claire @ Jazzpad

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    1. You would love camping, if you can cope on a barge boat you can do anything. It's so cheap too, you can have a lovely weekend away for about £50 with petrol, food and pitch if you budget xx

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  3. You've inspired me to think twice about cycling (I am a bad on a bike and hated the thought of biking anywhere) plus I now want to go camping again. We used to camp all.the.time and haven't for ages. Lovely post, thanks Gem x

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    1. I've not really had one since I was a kid and have really enjoyed it. You can cover so much more ground and there are plenty of traffic and stress free options you can take when you're getting into it. Glad you like it :) xx

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  4. Sounds perfect, camping, books and proper good down time. I haven't been to that part of Wales before. Cycling does make things so much better.

    Buckets & Spades

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  5. Aw, lovely post. This is where I live and I'm ashamed to say that I don't cycle much. This is something I plan to do more of once as the kids get older. x

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  6. Such lovely photos. I'd love to do something like this, but M just laughs every time I suggest anything similar.

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  7. Aaah it looks like you had a lovely trip! Definitely think I need to invest in a bike!
    x

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  8. This looks beautiful, Mark and I will have to try this next year :)

    Maria xxx

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