If you’re looking for a city-break that’s smog-filled, brightly-lit, busy, bustling, and not in the least bit sleepy, then don’t come to St David’s.
The UK’s tiniest city (in both size and population) lies on a peninsular on the Pembrokeshire coast in west Wales and is about as far away from typical city life as you can get – peaceful, calm, unspoilt and a wildlife lovers wonderland. In reality it’s a village that has the remarkable accolade of housing a beautiful 12th century cathedral and the medieval ruins of a Bishops Palace.
It’s also great bucket and spade country! There are plenty of sweeping beaches within a short drive, including Whitesands, which has lifeguards on duty in high season, a snack bar, toilets and plenty of parking too. Other lesser-known beaches in the area include the smaller Caerfai and Porthmelgan which you can only access via the coastal path – but it has strong currents so best stick to sandcastle making here with little ones.
Our base was a house rented from Coastal Cottages of Pembrokeshire. It was dog-friendly (yay!) located in the centre of St David’s and was large and spacious with a pleasant kitchen/diner, a large living room with wood burner plus a smaller snug with its own tv and fully stocked games, books and DVD cupboard for kids – meaning they can enjoy their own space and telly sessions. There was also a small garden and summer house plus three bedrooms and a large family bathroom upstairs.
We were treated to a Welsh Produce Hamper (just one of the hampers you can order from Coastal Cottages Concierge Service) which included Welsh Cakes, Bara Brith (a type of fruit loaf), local fudge, toffee waffles, chocolate and tea. Other hampers available include Farmhouse Breakfast and Sunday Roast hampers plus picnic and barbeque packs. You can also ask the concierge service to sort out dinner reservations, advice on local activities and attractions, and even a Private Chef.
The house was perfectly placed to enjoy village (or should I say city) life with a small supermarket just a couple of hundred yards away, a fish and chip shop even closer plus a good selection of coffee bars, shops and galleries. We enjoyed a nice evening meal in the atmospheric The Bishops pub in the village (best to book beforehand), meandering home by moonlight the short walk back to our cosy retreat.
As well as an exploration of the Cathedral and Palace at St David’s, it’s also a real treat to take one of the numerous boat trips that sail to Ramsay Island, Grassholm, Skomer and Skokholm where you can get up close to birds like puffins and gannets and maybe even spot a porpoise or dolphin too.
It beats being stuck in the usual rush hour city traffic by a mile.
Find out more about Coastal Cottages of Pembrokeshire here https://www.coastalcottages.co.uk/
Photos courtesy of Coastal Cottages of Pembrokeshire and Visit Pembrokeshire