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Aberystwyth is situated on the West coast of Wales and is a popular destination for people looking for a UK holiday. As you’d expect from a seaside town, Aberystwyth and the surrounding area has their fair share of beaches, and this article will provide all the information you need on them.
1. Aberystwyth North/South Beach
You can’t get closer to Aberystwyth than in Aberystwyth and that’s why our first recommendations are the North and South beaches which run along the length of the promenade. These are pebbly beaches with patches of grainy sand and rockpools, and in some places, there are large boulders which also act as a sea defence.
Entrance fee: Both beaches in Aberystwyth are free of charge.
Accessibility: The best access points are near the bandstand or via south beach as this has ramp access and low-level walls, so it’s easy to get down to the beach. Avoid trying to get down near the pier as there are high walls and the beach is only accessible via steep steps, which can be slippery when wet.
Facilities: As the beach runs alongside the promenade, there are plenty of facilities for people to enjoy all the way along, from cafés and pubs to the pier where you’ll find amusements, an ice-cream parlour, restaurants, pubs public toilets, and children’s rides.
Travel and parking: Free parking is available along the promenade, but this is hard to come by especially during the summer. Alternative car parking is available in local council car parks and retail outlets, all a ten-minute walk to the beach.
Are dogs allowed? Yes, dogs are allowed on Aberystwyth beach all year round on the section between the harbour and the slipway which can be found on the south side. Dogs are not allowed on the other parts of the beach during summer but are welcome for the rest of the year.
2. Tan-y-Bwlch Beach
Also technically in Aberystwyth across the harbour from Aberystwyth south beach is Tan-y-Bwlch beach. This is a long stretch of beach again made up of pebbles, grainy sand and boulders running from the stone jetty to Allt Wen (part of the Wales coastal path. This beach is not as well known to tourists as the Aberystwyth north/south beach but is an excellent place to visit when in Aberystwyth.
This beach is also unusual as it’s only separated by a few hundred meters from the Ystwyth river, which flows directly into Aberystwyth harbour.
Entrance fee: Tan y Bwlch beach near Aberystwyth is free of charge year-round.
Accessibility: At the very beginning, to access this beach you will need to climb up a short bank made up of loose pebbles, so not suitable for those in wheelchairs or using pushchairs. Further access is available by stepping off a bank onto grainy sand, however, there is a short walk across rough and uneven ground to get to this point.
Facilities: There are no facilities whatsoever at this beach, and it is also not patrolled by lifeguards so take care if you are thinking of swimming. If you are planning on spending the day here, especially with children you will need to think about planning regular trips back to the town or your accommodation for toilet facilities.
Travel and parking: Tan-y-Bwlch beach is situated about five minutes away from the town centre of Aberystwyth and there is a small car park available, which is free to use. Please note that this car park is not maintained and the ground is uneven, and there are numerous pot-holes.
Are dogs allowed? Dogs are allowed on Tan Y Bwlch beach all year round.
3. Borth Beach
The seaside town of Borth is situated 7 miles north of Aberystwyth and is an extremely popular destination for holidaymakers during the summer months. Borth beach runs alongside the town and stretches for miles along the coast. The beach is made up of pebbles and large patches of sand, which makes it an ideal destination for those with children.
Entrance fee: £0 The beach is free to anyone who wishes to use it.
Accessibility: from the main car park at the beginning of Borth, you are able to access the beach via a slipway and a short walk over pebbles to the sandy areas. Further north (opposite the train station) there is an opportunity to walk a section of path and numerous opportunities to access the beach via steps.
Facilities: as the beach runs alongside the town, there are plenty of facilities for people to enjoy all the way along, including amusement arcades, local cafés, newsagents, public toilets, pubs and even an animalarium! This beach is also patrolled by lifeguards during the summer months.
Travel and parking: Borth beach is fifteen minutes drive away from Aberystwyth, and you can also get there via bus and train – the train station is in the centre of Borth. Parking is available in pay and display car parks where there is a fee, and alongside the road which is free, but please note that it does get busy during the summer months so please arrive early.
Are dogs allowed? Dogs are not allowed on Borth beach between 1st May to 30th September which coincides with the main holiday season for the area. Although dogs are welcome on the beach for the rest of the year.
4. Ynyslas Beach
Ynyslas is a small village situated 1.5 miles north of Borth, and about twenty-five minutes from Aberystwyth. Ynyslas is home to a cluster of residential properties and several popular caravan parks.
It’s a firm favourite among holidaymakers in the summertime so accommodation gets booked up quickly! Ynyslas has a fantastic beach, which is mostly made up of long stretches of golden sand, with a few pebbly/rocky areas. It is possible to walk from Borth beach to Ynyslas when the tide is low enough.
Entrance fee: There is no entrance fee to Ynyslas beach during autumn and winter, however, during spring and summer, there will be a charge of £2 for car parking.
Accessibility: The beach is completely flat, with the sand being firm enough to drive on. There are numerous different routes to enjoy the beach, you can opt for a fully flat walk, or if you’re feeling more adventurous head out into the big sand dunes and see if you can find your way back!
Facilities: There are minimal facilities at Ynyslas beach, with there only being one set of toilets in the visitor centre, which is located around 10 minutes’ walk away from the car park. In the height of summer there’s normally an ice cream van parked in the car park, but no official cafés or restaurants.
Travel and parking: Head north from Borth for approximately 1.5 miles (a 10-minute car journey) and follow the signs for Ynyslas. Please take car when approaching the beach as the entranceway is narrow.
Parking is available on the sand, around the perimeter of the beach, but please take extreme care not to get caught out by the tide – if in doubt about where to park, try to ask for advice before you go. There are plenty of locals who use Ynyslas, and on occasion, Natural Resources Wales officers will be patrolling the area to give out advice.
Are dogs allowed? Yes, dogs are allowed on Ynyslas beach all year round although there will be occasions when sections are cordoned off because of nesting birds.
5. Llanrhystud Beach
Llanrhystud is a small village near Aberystwyth and is best accessed via car journey which will take approximately twenty minutes.
This area is home to a large number of residential properties and is the first main village south of the Aberystwyth area. There are also a few caravan parks dotted around and a golf club for those who enjoy swinging a nine-iron!
The beach at Llanrhystud is not the most popular in the Ceredigion area and is mainly used by locals rather than tourists. The beach is made up mainly of pebbles, with patches of sand when there is a low tide.
Entrance fee: There is no charge to use Llanrhystud beach.
Accessibility: Llanrhystud beach is flat but made up of pebbles so access with a pushchair or wheelchair will be difficult. At low tide, it is possible to walk along the sand.
Facilities: Except for car parking, there are no other facilities available at Llanrhystud beach. The nearest available toilets are at the Texaco garage opposite where you turn to access the beach. In the village, is a pub and small shop (you will pass these as you go through the village).
Travel and parking: Head south from Aberystwyth for 9 miles along the A487 and you will reach the small village of Llanrhystud. Heading south, take the right hand turning from the main road, opposite the Texaco garage and follow the signs for the beach. There is free parking available for 15 cars.
6. Llangranog Beach
Llangranog is a small village approximately 30 miles south of Aberystwyth and is best accessed via car journey which will take approximately fifty minutes. This area is home to a cluster of residential properties and a couple of tourist attractions, which are the internal museum of firepower, and the Urdd Gobaith Cymru (Wales League of Youth), which offers a range of sports and leisure facilities such as a dry ski slope and a swimming pool.
Entrance fee: There is no charge to use Llangranog beach.
Accessibility: This beach is made up of sand and is classed as a ‘family friendly’ beach. The beach is largely flat and there are good facilities located nearby.
Facilities: There are toilets, cafés and pubs available in close proximity to the beach.
Travel and parking: Head south from Aberystwyth for approximately 30 miles along the A487 and you will reach the small village of Llangranog. When in Llangranog, take a right hand turning in the middle of the village and follow the signs to head west to the beach. Due to the popularity of this beach, and the low amount of available spaces there is a charge for parking.
7. Mwnt Beach
Mwnt is a small parish located just outside of the town of Cardigan and is approximately thirty-nine miles south of Aberystwyth so it’s not as close as the others on this list..
This is a very small area that consists of mainly local dwellings but is an extremely popular destination for holidaymakers due to the fantastic beach.
Entrance fee: There is no charge to use Mwnt beach.
Accessibility: When you arrive in Mwnt, to get to the beach requires you to take a single-track road to the beach, however, there are passing points available should you meet any traffic. There is an approximately ten-minute walk from the car park to the beach itself. The path is made of tarmac and would be suitable for those using pushchairs or wheelchairs.
Facilities: There following facilities are available: National Trust car park, toilets and a kiosk selling ice creams.
Travel and parking: Head south from Aberystwyth for approximately 39 miles along the A487 and you will reach the small village of Mwnt. When you arrive in Mwnt, to get to the beach requires you to take a single-track road to the beach, however, there are passing points available should you meet any traffic. There is a charge for parking and there are no disabled spaces available.
Are dogs allowed? Mwnt beach has dog restrictions between May and September which is peak tourist season, although four-legged friends are welcome throughout the remainder of the year4 (source: Visit Wales).
Mike was born and brought up in Aberystwyth and is passionate about sharing his local knowledge. In his spare time, Mike is an avid cyclist, you'll find him along one of Mid-Wales' cycle routes or mountain bike courses.