Cardigan Bay and the Ceredigion area’s Cambrian Mountains are a real outdoor playground in Wales offering a wealth of activities from surfing and walking to angling and birdwatching. The spectacular coastline features many Blue Flag beaches and the countryside contains the great Pumlumon mountain range, part of the Cambrian Mountains in Mid Wales and pronounced “Pimlimmon” meaning "Five Peaks".
Families, surfers, walkers, birdwatchers, anglers and nature lovers heading to the Dyfi National Nature Reserve at Ynyslas all flock to this favourite activity holiday area. Angling is particularly popular on Cardigan Bay and prepare to be wowed by the landscapes here. The AA describes the B4574 drive winding through Cwmystwyth as one of the Top 10 most scenic drives in the World!
The Cardigan Bay Heritage Coast is a special area of conservation, a Marine Heritage Coast populated by bottlenose dolphins, porpoises and grey seals. Dolphin and seal watching boat trips are popular and widely available from New Quay and Cardigan. Blue Flag beaches can be found at Aberporth, Aberystwyth North and South, surfing hotspot Borth to the north near Ynyslas and New Quay and Tresaith. Many other beaches along Cardigan Bay have UK Seaside Awards or Green Coast Awards. The River Teifi is also popular for white water rafting, especially around Llandysul!
Walking in Ceredigion
The Ceredigion Coast Path stretches for around 50 miles, pushing north to Ynyslas and the Dyfi Estuary National Nature Reserve with plenty of opportunity along the way to admire the Marine Heritage Coast and spot dolphins and seals! Excellent linear walking routes also feature in the area including the Borth to Devil’s Bridge route and Aberaeron to Lampeter.
The Glyndwr’s Way National Trail stretches 132 miles across Mid Wales. Its name derives from Owain Glyndwr, a renowned Welsh warrior who fought for Welsh independence in the early 15th century. Beginning at Knighton on the England border, this path links with Offa’s Dyke as well as weaving west into the Radnorshire Hills, along the Clywedog Reservoir, onwards to Machynlleth.
Ceredigion Nature Reserves
A number of important nature reserves are located in Ceredigion. Cors Caron, just north of Tregaron village, is one of the best examples of raised bog systems in the UK. Ynyslas is part of the Dyfi National Nature Reserve and other wildlife rich sites including the sand dunes at Borth beach with Ynyslas Centre situated in the heart of the dunes! Alongside the River Teifi sits the Welsh Wildlife Centre and Teifi Marshes Nature Reserve. Cycle trails, nature trails, an Otter Gift shop and birdwatching hides are all here.
Best Beaches on Cardigan Bay
Some of the cleanest and best UK beaches can be found on Cardigan Bay. Blue Flag beaches are numerous and many are beautifully remote and away from the crowds. Surfers looking for a stunning quieter beach backed by dunes will love Borth beach. Pretty beaches flanked by picturesque villages and harbours include Aberporth, Tresaith and Llangrannog, plus the stunning National Trust beaches of Mwnt and Penbryn. Each beach has its own unique character ranging from the endless sands of beaches like Penbryn and Borth, to idyllic hidden cove beaches like Cilborth beach at Llangrannog.
Cycling Trails & Mountain Biking
Ceredigion has long been a favourite area with cyclists and keen mountain bikers. There’s a superb choice of cycle trails at Bwlch Nant-yr-Arian Forest Recreation Centre in the heart of Mid Wales which also has an award winning visitor centre and Red Kite Centre. Three areas in Ceredigion have been designated official Wales Cycle Break Centres.
The Rheidol Cycle Trail stretches for 28km between Aberystwyth and Devil’s Bridge, and for dedicated long-distance cyclists checkout the Sustrans National Cycle Route 81, Lon Cambria, running for 113 miles between Shrewsbury and Aberystwyth.
Angling in Ceredigion
It’s not just the Cardigan Bay coast that attracts anglers to this area of Wales, it’s also the rivers here too which include the Teifi, Aeron, Dyfi, Rheidol and Ystwyth. Freshwater angling is prevalent on Ceredigion’s rivers which are well stocked with salmon and trout. Around the seaward reach of the Teifi there’s world renowned Sewin (sea trout) fishing. Coarse angling is also popular, and Cardigan Bay is well known for its ample supplies of bass and black bream. You can charter fishing boats, or take fishing trips from coastal hotspots like Cardigan and New Quay.
Michelle is an experienced travel writer with iknow and has travelled extensively across the UK, Spain, Portugal and the USA. When she’s not busy writing for iknow she enjoys spending time touring museums and art galleries and seeking out the best independent shops in Manchester and Leeds.