A wet weekend on the Gower

It is one of life’s ironies that during the coronavirus lockdown, we have had some glorious weather. Spring has produced plenty of sunshine and blue skies, but provided only a very limited ability to get out and enjoy it. So while I’m working from home and undertaking caring responsibilities, I can look back with fondness to a time when the weather was grey and the rain was pouring, but we were allowed to travel freely and enjoy the coast and countryside.

Last Autumn, we had to take our daughter F to a guide camp on the Gower Peninsula in South Wales. It’s a beautiful area, being the UK’s first designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB), so we decided to take the opportunity to stay the weekend ourselves – at a nearby bed and breakfast that is, not the guide camp. So after dropping off F, S and I made our way to Mumbles, a little coastal town near Swansea that acts as a gateway to the Gower.

We woke up Saturday morning to see the sun disappearing behind grey cloud. The forecast was for rain, so we decided to go to Southgate straight after breakfast, to get in a walk before the downpour.

Southgate is a small village with a National Trust car park, which overlooks the sea and gives easy access to the Wales Coast Path. We began our walk heading in the direction of Three Cliffs Bay. After a short ramble, S and I arrived at a viewpoint overlooking the bay.

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We could have proceeded to view the ruins of Pennard Castle on the sand dunes and then to Oxwich Bay, but those storm clouds were looming on the horizon and we remembered the village shop at Southgate also had a cosy café. It was no contest, so we looped back on ourselves and headed to the village. It was just starting to rain as we arrived at the café and it was bucketing down by the time our well-earned cuppas were brought to the table. We enjoyed our drinks while congratulating ourselves on avoiding the deluge.

The rain continued for some time, so we decided to get in the car and drive the length of the peninsula to Llangennith. The theory was that the skies might have cleared by the time we got there. This didn’t turn out to be the case. Undeterred, we drove to the car park at the camp site and walked down to Rhossili beach.

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As you can see, we had lovely views! The surfers were undeterred though. If you want to see what the bay looks like in clear weather, have a look at the next picture.

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Unfortunately, it wasn’t like that on this occasion, so after a stroll to the water’s edge, we walked to the campsite café for a late lunch. After making the most of our cooked breakfast, we hadn’t really been hungry till now, but we enjoyed a sandwich alongside a group of surfers who had done their morning shift in the sea.

As we drove away from Llangennith, visibility improved. We returned to Mumbles via the north Gower road and a pub stop in Llanrhidian. Saturday evening provided an opportunity for a proper drink.

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On Sunday morning, we had to pick up F from camp and as luck would have it, the blue sky and sunshine re-emerged after their 24 hour sabbatical. Before resuming parental duties, S and I found time for a pleasant stroll along the Mumbles waterfront and a visit to the lifeboat station at the end of the pier.

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After another cuppa, our childless break was over and we made our way to camp. Despite the weather, it was a lovely weekend of freedom.

Factfile:
Location
Mumbles is at the entrance to the Gower Peninsula, 5 miles from Swansea, Wales, UK

Transport
The nearest train station is at Swansea. Regular bus services are available from Swansea bus station and a cycle path runs along the seafront from the city. Car travellers should exit the M4 for Swansea, drive through the city and along the A4067 coast road to Mumbles

Information
Mumbles has a variety of accommodation, restaurants and cafes. B & Bs, campsites and small hotels can be found elsewhere on the Gower. For information on the Gower, click here

If you liked this, you may wish to read my post on Rhossili and Worm’s Head

7 thoughts on “A wet weekend on the Gower

  1. A lovely journey via your blog to a very scenic place. I’ve never been to the region, but I now see what I have been missing. Thanks for the excellent photos and conversational tone.

    And thanks for following our blog, Oh, the Places We See. It’s a pleasure to have you on board! Rusha Sams

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ah so I’m not the only one with this idea hahaha. I was thinking that when my younger kid goes on a school trip, I’d also book a hotel nearby.

    I like the pictures actually. Gloomy. Dramatic. Similar to the weather here right now in Singapore. Non-stop rain for days. As if it’s not enough that people had to stay at home. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I actually quite like that shot of Rhossili Beach. 😉 There is a certain something about it. Makes me think of an intensely grey watercolour, sky and earth bound in togetherness by the grey. Great that you are getting out and have started taking mini steps towards travelling again.

    Liked by 1 person

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