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Pembrokeshire is very well known for its award-winning beaches and coastline and there are 50 beaches in Pembrokeshire!
With so many beaches to choose from it’s hard to know which beach in Pembrokeshire to visit but in this Wales travel post I’m giving you 5 of the Best Beaches in Pembrokeshire that you can visit in one day as they are pretty close together when driving, and walking if you wish!
Best Beaches in Pembrokeshire
I fully recommend following the itinerary I have detailed below in order to visit these best beaches in Pembrokeshire as my day flowed really smoothly and to help you plan your trip to Pembrokeshire I’ve added things like postcodes to help you find out where to park at the beaches too!
I started my day in Saundersfoot which is on the edge of Pembrokeshire. I had been staying in Carmarthen the night before which is a perfect base town in Wales as it’s pretty central to everywhere in South Wales – Swansea, Pembrokeshire, the Brecon Beacons.
There are 2 main car parks for Saundersfoot, the main one in the harbour and another one the other side of the beach by the Crown Beach Restaurant. I just happened to come across the Crown Carpark first so pulled in and I’m glad I did as it enabled me to walk right along the beach to the town and I didn’t have the stress of driving through the small roads of the town.
The postcode for this carpark is SA69 9AJ and the parking cost at Saundersfoot was £4.00 for the whole day which I’m glad about I did as I didn’t return until 5 hours later.
The tide was quite far out when I arrived in Saundersfoot mid-morning so I was able to walk right along the beach and breathe in the fresh sea air.
I headed into the town to have a look around and was greeted by the British sea-side smell of doughnuts and chips! I checked out the harbour which had no water in it due to how far the tide was.
Next I started my Coastal Walk to Tenby from Saundersfoot because Tenby is the next beach town along the coast to the West and it’s possible to walk from Saundersfoot to Tenby on a beautiful, but sweaty coastal walk!
Read here how to do the Saundersfoot to Tenby Walk!
Tenby is a very popular Welsh seaside town, even more so than Saundersfoot as it is a bit bigger and more well known for its colourful buildings. It’s often highly rated as one of the best beaches in Pembrokeshire and the most visited!
Tenby is home to a harbour, a castle and 2 beaches either side.
Fish and Chip shops are everywhere, as are shops where you can get the good old bucket and spade. Boat trips are offered to find nearby wildlife, there is a good-sized high street packed full of pubs and cafes with tables spilling out onto the streets and generally it is a very pretty, quaint and happy place to be.
There is a main car park in Tenby so whether you drive there or walk there I would highly recommend going!
Of course seen as I had left my car a 3+ mile walk away in Saundersfoot, I had to go back and get it. All in all I spent about 5 hours walking from Saundersfoot to Tenby and back along with spending some time in each town, so make sure you do give yourself enough time.
Freshwater East Beach
The next beach on my list was Freshwater East. I did get a bit confused with Freshwater East and West thinking that East was where Harry Potter was filmed, however Harry Potter was filmed on Freshwater West Beach in Pembrokeshire but more on that later.
It took me about 25 minutes to drive from Saundersfoot to Freshwater East Beach. I used postcode SA71 5LZ to find the car park which I found easily enough and paid £1.00 to stay there for an hour.
Freshwater East is a really nice beach. I felt a bit out of place in my gym/walking gear as at the time the beach was full of families playing in the sea and sand and there aren’t many places to walk apart from on the beach however it was nice to visit a beach with no town attached, no shops, no food carts, just a beautiful, quiet Pembrokeshire beach.
I had a walk along the top of the small-sized sand dunes but due to timing, I was back in my car and on my way to the next stop when looking for the best beaches in Pembrokeshire in one day!
The next stop being Barafundle Bay! When researching the best beaches in Pembrokeshire I came across Barafundle Bay as it has recently been voted as one of the most beautiful beaches in the world, so obviously it had to go on my list of beaches to visit in one day in Pembrokeshire.
Barafundle Bay is a secluded beach and doesn’t have a car park or road leading to it. Therefore to get to Barafundle Bay you need to drive to Stackpole Quay. I used postcode SA71 5LS to find the car park.
Be sure to note that before arriving at the car park you pass by a building with a car park and need to follow the road right around the U bend until you reach the main car park (this way you won’t go back and forth 3 times like I did thinking I had missed it!).
Here are the full details of how to get to Barafundle Bay!
Due to the cloud the beach wasn’t presented in the best of ways when I got there but I could understand the buzz of it being so beautiful as it really is secluded. The water was a lovely colour and I can imagine on a sunny day its amazing.
It seems like this is a popular place for surfers and kayakers too as there were a lot of people donning their wetsuits and heading up the woodland track towards the beach as I got back down to the car park.
I had booked a guest house in Pembroke Town for the night- High Noon Guest House. I booked it just the day before on Booking.com and got a single room for just £31.50 inc breakfast. It was a cheaper option than staying in the likes of Tenby and it was a mere 15 minute drive from Stackpole Quay so it worked perfectly when exploring the best beaches in Pembrokeshire!
The town of Pembroke was very quiet when I arrived at 6:30pm despite it being a Saturday night. The sky had cleared though and I was still debating whether I could fit in visiting another beach and hopefully a sunset or wondering whether I should leave Freshwater West until tomorrow morning?
Freshwater West Beach
I used postcode SA71 5AH to find the car park, this is for the main car park however due to the direction I came in I came across a different one situated behind some huge sand dunes. I got out the car with my chips in hand and headed straight for the beach and wow, was I blown away!
Freshwater West is the film location in Wales where The Harry Potter Deathly Hallows film was filmed in 2010. It’s a huge beach and it’s very exposed with some pretty big waves and it has to be of the very top best beaches in Pembrokeshire!
The top half of the beach was covered in coloured stones whereas the bottom was all sand. I ate my chips and then had a walk along the rest of the beach.
The beach isn’t perfectly West facing and instead the sun was setting behind the cliff but it was still good enough for me. The sun was due to set at 9:26pm and I must have been on the beach from about 8:15 for a good hour and the whole time the sky turned different colours, the sun appeared and then went behind the clouds creating even more beautiful colours.
It was really quiet and calm too, a few people were walking their dogs, one person was surfing, another was fishing and I just felt so happy! It really was the best way to end an already amazing day!
I drove 15 minutes back to Pembroke whilst the sky was turning a beautiful pink colour and I was full of happiness and contentment from my one day in Wales by the ocean and therefore I would highly recommend copying this day and doing it yourself when you visit Pembrokeshire!
Pembrokeshire is a pretty big area and I did only see a small section of it in a day however I think the best way to visit is to focus on an area of coastline with multiple beaches close together rather than trying to jump around the County too much!
- For more posts on my Wales see:
- 7 Tips for Road Tripping around Wales
- Hiking Pen Y Fan in the Brecon Beacons
- How to Spend the Perfect 48 Hours in North Wales.
- 10 Things To Do In And Around Broad Haven, South Wales.
- Highlights of Wales Day Tour From Cardiff, with Real Wales Tours