As more UK holidaymakers choose to ‘staycation’ rather than fly overseas for their summer holidays this year, the stunning beaches along the Mid Wales coastline are perfectly placed to welcome thousands of visitors.
Wales is absolutely stunning, so of course you’d book a staycation here.
But once you’ve booked your Airbnb, caravan or hotel what’s next on the agenda when planning the holiday that you’ve longed for during lockdown?
Now that outdoor attractions can reopen and cafes and restaurants with outdoor space can reopen from July 13, you won’t be at a loss for things to do and, not forgetting the copious amounts of natural beauty to take advantage of.
But please remember, check individual destinations to make sure they are open or if they have given a date for reopening.
From beaches and mountains, high-octane activities to feeding farm animals, here’s how to make your staycation memories count.
Some of the beaches are unmissable, too. Of course there’s the popular Sourth Beach in Tenby but if you’re after something a bit less populated Marloes Sands and St Bride’s in the west of the county are worth a visit and so are Manorbier. Nearby you’ll find the spectacular view of the Church Doors.
To highlight what a fantastic holiday option Mid Wales offers, Keep Wales Tidy has just announced that 17 beaches along the coastal regions of Ceredigion and the Meirionnydd district of Gwynedd have won awards for 2019.
The beaches have met the high standards needed to receive the prestigious Blue Flag, Green Coast and Seaside Awards.
Blue flags are generally considered the ‘gold standard’ for beaches across the world. Beaches must meet a list of 33 minimum criteria, including water quality, environmental management, safety and services.
Across Wales as a whole, 44 Blue Flags are flying at 40 beaches, including five in Ceredigion and three in Meirionnydd. This means that Wales has more Blue Flags per mile than anywhere else in the UK.
The great news for this year’s tourism prospects in Mid Wales comes as holiday giant Thomas Cook has reported a £1.5 billion half-year loss, citing ‘staycationing’ by UK holidaymakers as one of the prime causes.
Three of the 18 beaches across Wales that have gained the Green Coast Award, recognising ‘hidden gems’ along the coastline, are in Ceredigion.
The award recognises the excellent water quality and unspoiled environment, but unlike a Blue Flag Award beach, these sites won’t have the infrastructure and intensive management generally associated with more traditional seaside resorts.
This award encourages people to ‘adopt’ areas of the coast, helping contribute towards the sustainability of the area while promoting volunteering.
A further 40 beaches – including 11 in Ceredigion and one in Meirionnydd – have achieved the Seaside Award for their standard of water quality and facilities.
Rowland Rees-Evans, chairman of MWT Cymru, the independent organisation that represents 600 tourism and hospitality businesses across Mid Wales, said: “We are really proud that 17 of our fantastic beaches in Ceredigion and South Gwynedd have won these awards from Keep Wales Tidy.
“It’s very important for the tourism industry, at a time when staycationing is becoming increasingly popular, that we promote these awards to show off the excellent water quality and unspoiled environment that we have here in Mid Wales.
“Following the work of David Attenborough, both local residents and visitors are taking a lot more interest in removing discarded plastic from our beaches and seas, which has got to be good for the environment.”
The Blue Flag beaches in Mid Wales:
- Ceredigion: Aberystwyth North, Borth, Llangrannog, New Quay Harbour and Tresaith.
- Meirionnydd district of Gwynedd: Barmouth, Criccieth Traethy Promenade,
- Morfa Bychan (Black Rock Sands).
- Green Coast Award winners: Ceredigion: Cilborth, Llanrhystud and Mwnt.
Seaside Award winners: Ceredigion: Aberporth, Aberystwyth North and Aberystwyth South, Borth, Llangrannog, New Quay Harbour, Tresaith, Cilborth, Clarach, Llanrhystud, Mwnt, Penbryn and Traeth y Dolau. Meirionnydd district of Gwynedd: Tywyn.
And don’t forget the cracking castles and St Davids Cathedral. Pembrokeshire has a swathe of cool crumbly castles like Manorbier, Pembroke Carew, Cilgerran and more.
Take a trip to Stackpole Court, too and explore Bosherton Lakes and the beach.