Beautiful Pembrokeshire – perfect for a family trip

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We absolutely loved our trip to beautiful Pembrokeshire in Wales, as there was so much to do and everyone was extremely friendly. We would 100 per cent recommend it for a family holiday. We didn’t really want to come home – except to see Jess of course!

 

Watch our video above for Robert’s highlights

Where we stayed (by Robert):

Sands cottage in Pembrokeshire,
Our home for the week!

We stayed in one of the Talbenny Hall Cottages, called Sands Cottage, near Little Haven. Our cottage was comfortable, cosy, and warm and quiet, which was good. It had a bedroom with a double bed, a bedroom with a bunk bed, a bathroom with a shower, and a large living room/dining room with a kitchen. I liked the cottage but my room was quite small. I think that if Jess was in the room with me it wouldn’t have been big enough to keep our stuff in!

I especially liked the hamper we were given on the first day, with cakes, fudge, biscuits, and more.

The cottage was very nice, but it wasn’t close to many shops. This was fine, as we had a car.

Overall, I liked the cottage because it was homely.

Disclosure: We stayed in Sands Cottage, a Coastal Cottages property, which was great for a couple of family of three (Jessica wasn’t with us!). We were given a complimentary stay, but Coastal Cottages had no input at all into this blog post. The prices for the cottage for half-term week at the end of May would normally be £629.

The beaches, by Sarah

Barafundle Bay in Pembrokeshire,
You can see Barafundle Bay just behind Robert!

One of the reasons I wanted to come to Pembrokeshire was because I had heard that it had the most glorious beaches. It was a very good reason – the beaches are wonderful. We spent a long time at two beaches in particular, Barafundle Bay and Marloes. They are both utterly beautiful and would wow anyone.

Barafundle was recently voted by Passport magazine as one of the top beaches in the world.It’s not the most accessible beach (but that’s part of its charm), although not good for visitors with very young children or in wheelchairs. You need to park at Stackpole Bay and walk over the cliffs – a fabulous walk – for around 15 minutes, before you come to the steps which lead down to the bay. When you first see the steps and the beach behind it, it will take your breath away. The sea is gorgeously blue and the expanse of sand is huge. Truly wonderful.Do note that there are no facilities at all on the beach, so bring your own food (and go to the loo beforehand!)

Beautiful Marloes beach in Pembrokeshire
Beautiful Marloes beach

Marloes is also gorgeous, with lots of rock pools and a huge expanses of sand. Scenes from the Hollywood film Snow White and the Huntsman featuring Charlize Theron and Kristen Stewar were filmed here in 2011.

Heatherton World of Activities, by Brian

At Heatherton world of activities
Jumping through trees at Heatherton

We came here mainly so Robert could go on the fantastic Tree Tops Adventure Trail, but Sarah and I also had a great time. The hedge maze was really fun – I completed it without cheating (unlike some other members of the family). We all loved the baseball/softball cages.  I tried baseball, and struggled to touch, never mind hit, the balls coming towards me at 60 mph. I then had a “water war” with Rob, and completely soaked him. We finished our day with a round of adventure golf. There was so much to do, and even though we had stayed over six hours, we really did not want to leave.

Read Robert’s detailed post on Heatherton here

Disclosure: Heatherton is free to enter, and you take part in activities by using credits. We were given a family book of credits to use while we were there, as well as a complimentary session of the Treetops Adventure Trail, which costs £27.50 and is for people aged 10 years upwards.There is also a junior course.

Pembroke Castle, by Brian

Pembroke Castle in Pembrokeshire,I have visited many different castles over my lifetime, but this one is probably the one that I have enjoyed the most. Gareth, a retired history teacher, was a fantastic guide and made the history come alive. The magnificent keep, the huge cave, and the dungeons were all incredible. There was a lot of walking up steps, but it was definitely worth it.

Read our detailed post on Pembroke Castle here.

A boat trip to see puffins, by Robert

The boat which took us to see puffins and seals!
The boat which took us to see puffins and seals!

A part of the holiday which I really enjoyed was our puffin and seal boat trip which we took with Thousand Island Expeditions. This consisted of getting into a speed boat, sailing off into the sea, and spotting seals, puffins, and more. We also sailed up to Skomer Island which was very big and green. There were loads of birds and puffins – the most birds I’d ever seen in my life, which was really cool.

Puffins near Skomer Island
It was amazing to see the puffins near Skomer Island

It was really exciting going in the boat, and I loved going really fast. I especially loved when our boat seemed to jump above the water for a few seconds! The woman sailing the boat knew a lot about birds, and mum and dad found the facts she told us really interesting. We all really enjoyed it. I personally found the boat ride more exciting than the puffins, but I know that mum and dad would disagree…

St David’s, by Sarah

St David's Cathedral in Pembrokeshire,
Stunning St David’s Cathedral

We took the boat trip from the coast just by St David’s, which is the smallest city in the UK. It is chocolate box pretty and well worth a visit, even if it’s more like a village! The 12th century cathedral is a marvel – even if you don’t enter and walk around – and looks like something from a film set, while the Oriel y Parc Gallery often has beautiful displays. The main shopping throughfare gets very busy, but there is an abundance of small shops and eateries, including some really good ice-cream and chocolate shops. A short drive away you can take a boat to see puffins, seals and more.

Folly Farm

At Folly Farm in Pembrokeshire, We all loved Folly Farm, which is a brilliant day out for families. Somehow it managed to appeal to the thrill-seeking Robert and also the nostalgia-seeking Sarah! Folly Farm calls itself an adventure park and zoo, and it has a lot of space for both. It’s clean and well set-up, with animals ranging from lions to penguins, meerkats to the most adorable sloth, as well as farm animals (which may appeal more to younger children, who will also like the soft play barn). There are also outside play areas and a range of old fashioned fairground rides, which we really loved (you need to pay for these by changing modern money into tokens). These have been painstakingly restored and are all under cover, which was lucky as it was raining when we arrived. I particularly loved the old fashioned arcade games, many of which are paid for by using 2ps and 10ps – we had to pull Robert away from trying again and again to win!

At Folly farm in Pembrokeshire

Folly Farm costs £13.95 for adults and £11.95 for kids. We were given free entry as arranged by Coastal Cottages as part of their wonderful concierge service. However, neither Coastal Cottages or Folly Farm had any input into this blog post.

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17 Responses

  1. We love this area too Sarah. We’ve stayed at Stackpole a couple of times, and would definitely recommend it.

  2. I absolutely love Pembrokeshire too, and have had some stunning holidays there. I’m sure it must rain (it’s Wales after all) but my memories are all of sunny walks and beaches. I can recommend landing on Skomer island if you ever go back, I spent a week there counting puffins as part of my Duke of Edinburgh award many years ago….

    PS -What have you done with Jess?!

  3. Your post has put a smile on my face. What a lovely trip you’ve had. Those rock pools look amazing. The castle looks lovely. It’s one I’ve never visited before.

  4. Having visited North Wales last year and loved it, I should really investigate a bit further south. We really are lucky with our British beaches – these looks glorious.

  5. Wow, what a beautiful place… Those beaches AND you got to see Puffins. Putting it very firmly on our introducing our children to the UK list! 🙂

  6. This looks like so much fun! I would love to go and visit!

  7. This place looks like a great destination for a weekend gateway. Although the castle is not huge, it’s really beautiful. I’ll definitely check it out!

  8. aaaaw… your boy’s smile is contagious!!! Looks like you guys had a blast!!!

  9. Sounds like an incredible family trip. What surprised me is the puffin watching- excited because we leave for Faroe Islands in few weeks and puffin watching is so high on our list!

  10. Pembrokeshire looks like a lovely getaway! I also love to explore a destination by boat, so the boat ride tour would be on the top on my list! Thanks for sharing your tips!

  11. I wanted to do the boat trip to see the puffins but sadly it was too windy. We adored Folly Farm!!

  12. We love Tenby and try to visit each year – just such a beautiful and fun place for families. That cottage looks like a lovely base for adventures

    Laura x

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