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North Pembrokeshire’s best attractions and places to explore

14th July 2018

The latest of our series of Celtic Haven Reviews sees us take a look at the jewels on offer in north Pembrokeshire.

Many of our guests come to Celtic Haven for the opportunity to explore the wealth of beautiful locations and attractions that the county has to offer.

Whilst there is plenty to do near to the resort, many of our guests opt to head off further afield to take in the array of great places in the north of the county.

From St Davids, through to Porthgain and onto Newport, there’s lots to take in across north Pembrokeshire.

With a rugged, diverse landscape that has a proud, rich heritage of ancient history and is a distinctive contrast to the county’s south, we’ve brought you some of our favourite sites for you to enjoy your time at when with friends and family!

Castell Henllys

Situated in North Pembrokeshire, Castell Henllys is a historical reconstruction of an Iron Age Hillfort that sits in 26 acres of woodland on excavated remains that date back to over 2000 years ago.

A great day out for any history buff, the three large replica roundhouses, forge and granary are particularly spectacular and the nearby 4,000-year-old Gors Fawr circle of stones are another great feature to check out.

If you’d like to visit the site then prices vary from £3.50 to £12.75!

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Image courtesy of megalithic.co.uk

Cilgerran Castle

Cilgerran Castle is a beautiful fort in a prime location that overlooks the River Teifi and boasts two massive round towers that have stood strong until this very day.

Impressive, when you consider that this was the first castle to be established in the region by the Normans and is estimated to be around 800 years old.

Entry to the castle is free during the winter months, and is free all year round to National Trust Members and disabled visitors. For anybody else, prices range from £2.65 to £10.50 depending on demography.

If you plan on taking your dogs with you then you’re more than welcome to, but be aware that they must be kept on leads during your visit.

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Image courtesy of visitwales.co.uk

Foel Drygarn

Set in the Eastern Preselis, Foel Drygarn is the remains of a large Iron Age Hill-fort that boasts three defended enclosures, and three large cairns – each of which is three metres in height.

Also known as Foel Trigarn, the site can be only be accessed via a footpath, however there is nearby parking to make the journey easier.

Research conducted by historians into the site’s heritage suggest that it is likely to have once been a heavily populated fortified village, which was built between 650BC and 100AD.

Foel Drygarn

Pentre Ifan

Pentre Ifan is an exceptional example of a cromlech – a megalithic tomb consisting of a large flat stone laid on upright ones and sometimes called a Dolmen – that is topped with a 15 tonne capstone and dates back to the Neolithic era.

The original tomb would have been covered in numerous rocks – though only seven remain in their original position today – and it is believed that the tomb would have often been re-used over years, making it a communal burial location and not an individual one.

Full of history, this area is where the original Stonehenge bluestones are purported to originate from according to some historic research.

Strumble Head Lighthouse

The Strumble lighthouse was erected in 1908 and situated on the small island of Ynsmeicel, which is reachable via a small footbridge.

Strumble head is on the North West tip of Pembrokeshire, situated 5 miles west of the small town of Fishguard – in an area that is famously the last place to be invaded on the British mainland, following an attack by French troops in 1797.

A beautiful porcelain white, circular stone tower is 55 ft high and still contains the original lantern that’s over a century old.

You can learn more here!

Cwm Yr Eglwys

This small village probably isn’t worthy of a day visit as many of the locations on the list are, but it’s well worth stopping off at if you are in the area!

The drawing feature is the slightly bizarre ruins of the Church of St Brynach.

Damaged beyond repair in a storm in the 1850s, its ruins were demolished in the 1880s – apart from the west entrance wall, which remains to this day.

A new sea wall was built to protect what was left of the graveyard and the site has subsequently evolved into a very popular tourist attraction.

Situated between Fishguard and Newport, the hamlet would be a perfect stop off point on a tour of the north coast!
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Cenarth Falls

The Cenarth Falls is a stunning cascade of waterfalls formed by the River Teifi that sits just upstream of the road bridge in the village of Cenarth.

Though technically in Ceredigion and not Pembrokeshire, we felt that this spectacular attraction was worthy of inclusion in our list.

Situated in beautiful woodlands, autumn sees the falls become the home of ‘leaping’ salmon as they seek to migrate ahead of spawning season.
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St Davids Cathedral

Founded in 589, the cathedral sits at the most westerly point of Wales and dominates the picturesque city that bears its name and is famously the smallest city in the UK with a population of under 2000 people.

The cathedral is named after founder Saint David, the patron saint of Wales who is believed to have been born in Pembrokeshire between the years of 462 and 512.

Home to beautiful artwork, stained glass windows, woodwork and artefacts that have been procured over the centuries, the cathedral’s rich history has seen the architecture become eclectic in nature but with a distinctively Gothic influence. and is a must visit.

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Learn more: Explore St Davids Cathedral – the heritage site that has defined a nation

North Pembrokeshire coastal spots

Though the north of the county is brimming with ancient history, it is also home to some beautiful coastal locations that are well worth a visit!

More rugged and rockier than many of the idyllic spots situated in the south of Pembrokeshire, here are some of the best locations for you to go and explore when you next come to Pembrokeshire.

Trefin Village

Although small, Trefin is a historical village with links to the poets as Edgar Phillips and Archdruid Crwys (born William Williams) who was born there in 1889 – the town’s mill at Aberfelin being the subject of the latter’s poem Melin Trefin.

Trefin’s name comes from the Welsh Trefaen meaning ‘village on the rock outcrop’, and offers beautiful views of the county’s north coast whilst a stone circle sits out to the west coast and situated.

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Newport

Newport is a stunning village that sits in ancient port of Parrog at the mouth of the River Nevern and offers some of the best coastal walks in the north of the county, with the estuary leading onto a beautiful beach.

A short journey on from the town of Fishguard, Newport also has a quaint harbour and a number of great pubs and restaurants, including the Golden Lion, for you to enjoy as you refuel on any north Pembrokeshire excursion you undertake!

Travelling up to Newport directly from the south of the county also affords you the opportunity to explore the beautiful Preseli Hills that offer you breathtaking country views that are a match for anything that Pembrokeshire has to offer.

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Porthgain

Porthgain is a small village located between St David’s and Goodwick with a history firmly rooted in the slate and fishery trades.

The harbour, still home to local fishermen, can get very busy in the summer with recreational boaters, offering a wonderful spectacle for those looking to enjoy a drink in the sun when they visit.

Despite it’s small size, Porthgain is home to a number of restaurants including the Shed, a small bistro situated by the Quay, and the Sloop.

Visitors can also take in the Harbour Lights Gallery and enjoy excellent walks either side of the village!

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Abereiddy

Abereiddy is a small blue flag beach that is home to one of Pembrokeshire’s most unique spots – the blue lagoon.

Formerly an old slate quarry, the lagoon is a beautiful poolthat has stunning turquoise waters that are genuinely stunning.

A number of ledges make it an opportune location to go jumping into the sea, with its reputation so profound that it even hosted the Red Bull Cliff Diving series in 2012, 2013 and 2016!

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Solva

Solva’s crescent-shaped tidal creek boasts a south-facing entrance that is towered over by beautiful rural headlands, that offers a variety of enjoyable leisure activities to enjoy.

Head down the beach towards the mouth of the inlet and you will find a large stretch of sand with plenty of rock pools and caves to explore.

The water here is relatively shallow, whilst there is very shallow and very good for small children to go and have some fun, whilst the high tide offers the opportunity for others to enjoy jumping off the harbour wall.

A number of paths lead up to The Gribbin, which offers superb views whilst the ridge opposite to Solva ends up at an idyllic little pebble beach – exemplifying the fact that whilst the village may be small, there’s sufficient diversity to suit all tastes and groups!

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We hope you’ve enjoyed this guide to the treasures of north Pembrokeshire, if you would like to learn more about what the Celtic Haven Resort or the Pembrokeshire has to offer then feel free to reach out to the team via 01834 870000 or email us at welcome@celtichaven.co.uk!

Learn  more about Pembrokeshire through other articles from the team!

Your best photos of Pembrokeshire’s wildlife

What’s on Pembrokeshire July 2018