The large Pembrokeshire town of Milford Haven is at the South of the A4076 from Haverfordwest, surrounded by the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park (defined as a National Park because of its spectacular coastline). Milford Haven has grown as a port town (the largest in Wales), owing to its position on the North of the Milford Haven Waterway – a natural estuary harbour, and has been a thriving port since the middle ages.
Founded as a whaling centre by 18th century Quakers, and built up around a grid pattern, the area has been settled both for port and shelter by settlers and Vikings. Ideally situated for travel to Ireland and for building warships and royal vessels, as well as a lookout for military security, it was even used as a Second World War base for US troops.
Nowadays, the Commercial dock (with the 4th largest volume of all UK dock traffic) and the oil and gas industries predominate, but its past as a fishing and agricultural area should not be forgotten. The coastline is beautiful, with rugged cliffs, clear beaches, and coastal islands.
The Milford Haven Museum situated in the 1797 custom house (which was originally used to store whale oil, and has also been used as a mine sweeping assembly point), concentrates mainly on maritime history. The harbour and port are crucial to Milford Haven – indeed, Lord Nelson is quoted as saying it possessed one of the finest harbours he’d ever seen. And the sea front is geared up for tourism too – the stunning marina area has been recently renovated for retail/dining purposes.
The Tall Ships Trust organises the Festival of the Milford Haven Waterway – a biennial festival of long boat rowing and classic seagoing vessels, celebrating this waterway’s success.
In the town
Many of the town’s buildings are of Georgian and Victorian origin, and visitors will note that Milford Haven centre isn’t inundated with a huge number of ancient historical buildings, though it does possess a seventeenth century beacon chapel, and the medieval Pill Priory. The Torch Theatre in the town is an entertainment hub with cinema, theatre and galleries.
How to get there
Milford Haven is accessible via the A4076 on the South Western tip of Pembrokeshire, the A48 and A40 from the East, or the A40 from Fishguard. There is also a well-used railway station in the town.
Where to stay
We can offer some delightful river and waterfront estuary properties in the Milford Haven area. Largely self-catering holiday cottages, we are also proud to offer our guest houses, hotels and inns. Whatever the reason for your break in this area – to soak up the town’s history, explore the local bays and scenery of the Pembrokeshire Coast path, or whether you’re exploring the Pembrokeshire area in general, our varied selection of accommodation is full of inspiration, so do take a look at our lists below.